Considering an upgrade to your loft insulation or your boiler as we head into the colder months is a sensible idea, but the reality for many is that green energy upgrades can be very expensive and often take years to pay for themselves.
But what you might not know is that there are government grants available to help pay for making your home more energy-efficient, environmentally friendly and cheaper to run. And companies like Stonehouse-based Cotswold Energy Group, which specialise in supplying and installing solar panels and heat pumps, can help and advise Gloucestershire homeowners on accessing government grants and securing new and efficient heating systems, just in time for winter.
The Boiler Upgrade Scheme
Whether you live in an old Cotswold farmhouse, a listed property or a new build, a specialist survey team and in-house design team at a company such as Cotswold Energy Group will design a heating system that is tailored to the exact requirements of your home, be that underfloor heating or traditional radiators.
Cotswold Energy Group also offers help with securing money from The Boiler Upgrade Scheme, which forms part of the government's plan to phase out fossil fuel heating and reduce each property’s carbon footprint.
Under the Boiler Upgrade Scheme, every homeowner in Gloucestershire is eligible to apply and can be awarded £7,500 to replace an existing boiler with an air source heat pump or a ground source heat pump. The money is paid up front, is not financially means tested and anyone who has an existing boiler (or is self-building a home) will be eligible.
The Energy Company Obligation Scheme
The Energy Company Obligation scheme, or ECO scheme, is another government-backed initiative to help tackle fuel poverty and reduce carbon emissions.
The scheme works by directing energy suppliers towards helping households on low incomes, those in fuel-poor areas or vulnerable households to heat their homes by, for example, installing insulation and upgrading heating systems — essentially, measures that reduce a household's energy usage. If a household qualifies for help under this scheme, it could get free insulation, heat pumps and solar panels.
The Warm and Well Service
The Warm and Well service offers grants to homeowners and landlords in Gloucestershire, who don't have mains gas heating in the house, to enable them to upgrade heating systems and improve their property's overall energy-efficiency.
Grants are offered by the Warm and Well Home Upgrade fund, providing that your total household income is under £31,000 per year, and can pay for home improvements such as air source heat pumps, solar panels and cavity wall and loft insulation
The Great British Insulation Scheme
This scheme offers free insulation improvements to those in receipt of benefits or on low incomes, and to those who own their own home which has a low-efficiency rating and a council tax band of A to D. Subject to an assessment, residents may be offered cavity wall and loft insulation upgrades, which could both save in the region of £200 to £700 a year in gas and electricity bills.
To find out more about any of these schemes and to discuss the upgrades that could benefit your home, call Cotswold Energy Group on (0333) 444 5444 or visit cotswold.energy.