7 financial support schemes for EPC upgrades
As the world becomes more conscious of the impact of climate change, there has been a significant drive towards reducing carbon emissions in every sector. One of the ways the government is encouraging homeowners to reduce their carbon footprint is by implementing Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) upgrades. EPC upgrades are aimed at making homes more energy-efficient, thereby reducing carbon emissions. However, the cost of upgrading can be quite high, making it difficult for many homeowners to make the necessary changes. This is where financial support schemes come in.
In this blog, we will look at seven financial support schemes available to homeowners to help with the cost of EPC upgrades.
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1. Green Homes Grant Scheme
The Green Homes Grant Scheme is a government initiative that provides vouchers to homeowners in England to make energy-efficient upgrades to their homes. The scheme covers up to two-thirds of the cost of eligible upgrades, up to a maximum of £5,000 per household. For low-income households, the scheme covers the full cost of eligible upgrades, up to a maximum of £10,000. The scheme covers a wide range of upgrades, including insulation, heating, and double-glazed windows. The benefits of the Green Homes Grant Scheme are that it can help you save money on your energy bills, make your home more comfortable, and reduce your carbon footprint.
To be eligible, you must own your own home in England. You must also install at least one primary measure, such as insulation or low-carbon heating. To apply for the scheme, you can check your eligibility on the government’s website and find a registered installer to carry out the work.
2. Energy Company Obligation (ECO) Scheme
The ECO Scheme is a government initiative that obliges large energy companies to provide energy-efficient upgrades to homes in England, Scotland, and Wales. The scheme covers the cost of upgrades such as insulation, heating, and double-glazed windows for low-income households and those in fuel poverty. To be eligible, you must meet certain criteria based on your income and the energy efficiency of your home. To apply for the scheme, you can contact your energy supplier or a registered installer.
3. Local Authority Grants
Many local authorities offer grants to homeowners to make energy-efficient upgrades to their homes. The grants vary depending on where you live, but they typically cover the cost of upgrades such as insulation, heating, and double-glazed windows. To be eligible for a local authority grant, you must meet certain criteria based on your income and the energy efficiency of your home. To apply for a local authority grant, you can contact your local council or a registered installer.
4. Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI)
The Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) is a government initiative that provides payments to homeowners who install renewable heating systems in their homes. The scheme covers the cost of systems such as air source heat pumps, ground source heat pumps, and biomass boilers. To be eligible you must install a renewable heating system in your home. To apply for the scheme, you can check your eligibility on the government’s website and find a registered installer to carry out the work. The benefits of the RHI are that it can help you save money on your energy bills, make your home more comfortable, and reduce your carbon footprint.
5. Feed-In Tariffs (FITs)
Feed-In Tariffs (FITs) are a financial support scheme designed to encourage the uptake of renewable energy technologies. If you install an eligible technology, such as solar panels or wind turbines, you can receive payments for the electricity you generate, as well as any surplus electricity you export to the grid. This can provide a valuable source of income and help to offset the upfront costs of installation.
Applying for FITs is relatively straightforward. You’ll need to provide evidence of your installation, such as an MCS certificate, and submit a FIT application to your chosen energy supplier. Once your application is approved, you’ll start receiving payments for the electricity you generate. To be eligible for FITs, you must own or occupy the property where the technology is installed, and the installation must meet certain criteria. You’ll also need to apply to an energy supplier that offers FITs, and you’ll need to have an EPC with a rating of D or higher.
The benefits of FITs are numerous. In addition to providing a source of income, they can help you to reduce your energy bills and cut your carbon footprint. They can also make your property more attractive to potential buyers, as it will have a source of renewable energy.
6. Home Improvement Loans
Home Improvement Loans are a type of loan designed to help homeowners make improvements to their property. They can be used to fund a wide range of upgrades, including EPC improvements such as insulation or double glazing.
Applying for a Home Improvement Loan is similar to applying for any other type of loan. You’ll need to provide evidence of your income and outgoings, as well as details of the work you plan to carry out. You’ll also need to have a clear repayment plan in place. To be eligible for a Home Improvement Loan, you’ll need to own the property and have a good credit history. The loan will be secured against your property, so it’s important to consider the risks before you apply.
The benefits of Home Improvement Loans are that they can provide a flexible source of funding for your EPC upgrades. They can also help you to spread the cost over a longer period, making the upgrades more affordable.
7. Green Deal Scheme
The Green Deal Scheme was a government initiative designed to help homeowners make energy-efficient improvements to their property. The scheme has now closed to new applications, but if you already have a Green Deal Plan in place, you can still access the funding.
The Green Deal Scheme worked by providing a loan to fund the EPC upgrades, which was repaid through the energy bills. This meant that homeowners could make the upgrades without having to pay anything upfront.
To be eligible for the Green Deal Scheme, you needed to have an EPC assessment carried out and then choose a Green Deal Provider to carry out the work. The scheme covered a wide range of improvements, including insulation, heating, and lighting.
The benefits of the Green Deal Scheme were that it provided a low-cost way to make energy-efficient improvements to your property. The repayments were based on the savings made, so you were never out of pocket.
EPC upgrades are an essential step towards reducing carbon emissions and creating a more energy-efficient home. However, the cost of these upgrades can be daunting. Fortunately, there are various financial support schemes available to help homeowners with the cost of EPC upgrades. By taking advantage of these schemes, homeowners can make the necessary changes without breaking the bank. So, if you are thinking of upgrading your home’s energy performance, be sure to explore these financial support schemes and find the one that is right for you.
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