Government Green Homes Grant Scheme: How will it work? Vouchers worth up to £5,000 will be issued to homeowners in England to make their homes more energy efficient under a new Government scheme that launches in September. We don't yet have full details about how the new scheme will work however some of the details can be seen below.
As part of the Green Homes Grant scheme, eligible homeowners will be able to use the vouchers to help pay for environmentally friendly improvements such as installing loft, floor and wall insulation or double-glazing.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak outlined the plans, which will see the Government put aside £2 billion for green home upgrades.
How will the Green Homes Grant work? The idea is that the Government will give homeowners in England vouchers towards the cost of energy efficient improvements, which should cover much – and in some cases all – of the cost. You'll have to apply for a voucher once the scheme is up and running in September. You'll then be able to spend it to improve your home.
The aim of the scheme is to help homeowners and promote energy efficiency, but also to help boost the economy during the coronavirus pandemic by creating jobs. The Green Homes Grant applies to England only – so unfortunately won't cover homes in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.
What will the vouchers cover? The Treasury says the vouchers can pay for "green improvements such as loft, wall and floor insulation", while Business Secretary Alok Sharma has indicated that double-glazing will also be included.
The Government hasn't yet given a complete list, so other improvements may also be covered.
How much will the vouchers be worth? For most homeowners, the vouchers will be worth about two-thirds of the cost of the energy efficient improvements, up to a maximum of £5,000 per household. For example, the Treasury says a homeowner installing cavity wall and floor insulation costing £4,000 would only pay about £1,320, with the Government contributing the remaining £2,680 through the voucher scheme.
But those on low incomes will be able to get more – in that case the Government will cover the full cost of the energy efficient improvements, so you won't have to pay anything, and the vouchers could be worth up to £10,000 per household.
Of course, green improvements such as insulation can also help cut your energy bills, with the Government saying families could be able to save hundreds of pounds a year as a result.
Will anyone be able to get these vouchers? That was the impression given by the Chancellor in his speech, but details are still scant. The Treasury has said it hopes the scheme will help pay for improvements in over 600,000 homes across England – so the vouchers should be fairly widely available.
The boosted £10,000 vouchers, where households won't need to pay anything towards improvement costs, will be for those on the lowest incomes – but again, we don't know what the threshold or exact eligibility criteria are at the moment.
How can I apply for a voucher? The scheme is set to be launched at some point in September, and homeowners will be able to apply online at this point.
Homeowners will be shown energy efficiency measures which the vouchers can be used for and recommended accredited suppliers. Once a supplier has provided a quote and the work has been approved, a voucher will be issued. The Government hasn't said how long it could take for an application to be approved and a voucher issued, however.
The Government has said households will be able to spend the vouchers with "local accredited suppliers",but hasn't yet given details on which firms could be part of the scheme or what the criteria would be.
How will the scheme affect DEAs? Any fabric improvements to a home would make the old EPC incorrect therefore we may expect homeowners to request a new EPC on completion of the installs, this isn’t set in stone but would make sense this will drive another the demand for more updated EPCs on the register, Landlords wanting to comply with MEES may also a request an updated EPC to comply with current MEES regulations again feeding demand for DEAs.