Residents on low income encouraged to apply for Government Green Homes Grants
To help people save on their heating bills and reduce carbon emissions, the Government are funding retrofit improvements to homes with low-income householders. In the South Somerset District Council area, procured by the SW Energy Hub, Happy Energy are delivering this work in partnership with E.ON Energy.
Endorsed by SSDC, under the Green Homes Grants Scheme, owner-occupiers will benefit from energy efficiency installations up to the value of £10,000 with nothing for them to pay towards the costs of works. Tenants of rented properties can also access grants of up to £5,000 for energy efficiency upgrades, but the landlord will be expected to contribute at least one third towards the cost of works.
Who is eligible?
To be eligible for the grants the residents of the property must have a low income (receive benefits or have the household income below £30,000 per annum) and the EPC for the property must be rated D, E, F or G. If there is no EPC for your property, you can still apply and it does not matter who your energy supplier is. To find out if your property has an EPC, see https://find-energy-certificate.digital.communities.gov.uk/
What do I do if I think I qualify?
If you are struggling to keep your home warm and you think you might be eligible for some help, you can submit an application at the following website https://www.heatsomerset.co.uk/.
How long is the scheme running for?
The scheme is expected to run until March 2022, but will operate on a first-come, first-served basis.
What will happen if I do qualify?
If you qualify, Happy Energy Solutions will survey your home to assess which energy efficiency measures could be installed.
The options will then be discussed with you for a final decision to be reached.
78 year old Mr K was the first to benefit from the scheme. In receipt of Pension Credits and with health problems made worse by the cold, he lived in a well-insulated bungalow, but the only form of heating was electric panel heaters that were very expensive to run. Mr K’s energy bills were £126 per month, despite only heating one room in his home. Paying his energy bills had become totally unaffordable.
Happy Energy Solutions, managers of HEAT Project, arranged for the installation of an Air Source Heat Pump central heating system and Solar PV, all of which were covered by the grants! The heat pump was grant funded under the Government’s Green Homes Grants Local Authority Delivery programme and the Solar PV was funded with a grant through the Energy Company Obligation (ECO).
The EPC rating of the property has now improved from an F to a B to reflect the significant reduction in the household energy bills. Mr K’s energy bills have reduced by an estimated £472 per year and a total of 3.1 tonnes of CO2 have been saved each year.
SSDC Portfolio Holder for Environment Councillor, Sarah Dyke, said: “SSDC are pleased to endorse this energy saving initiative to help our residents stay warm, save money and help the environment. As part of our Environment Strategy, we pledged to signpost people to available grants to help them decarbonise their homes. This scheme offers resources to help our residents improve their homes to be energy efficient, and we encourage those who think they are eligible to apply.”
Nigel Dewbery, Director of Residential Solutions at E.ON, said: “We’re really pleased to be working with the South West Energy Hub to give eligible residents the opportunity to install a range of energy efficiency measures on their properties.
“This demonstrates E.ON’s commitment to helping improve the energy efficiency of housing across the UK and reducing individual homeowners’ impact on the environment, all helping to support our net-zero targets.”