The new Government scheme the green deal should help you make energy/saving improvements to your home and find the best way to pay for them. The improvements could save even the most energy dependent home.
What is the Green Homes Grant?
Landlords can apply for a voucher towards the cost of installing energy efficient and low carbon heating improvement homes which could save up to £600.00 on energy bills.
The Government has decided to provide people with a voucher that covers up to two thirds of the cost of qualifying improvements to your home. The greatest value of the voucher is £5,000.00. There is a potential to receive a higher level of subsidy if you are a home owner and either you or a member of your household receives one of the qualifying benefits. Covering 100% of the cost of the improvement. The value of these vouchers are £10,000.00.Yetr landlords cannot apply for the low income part of the scheme. So if you rent out your property it won’t refer to you.
The local authorities will be making support available for low income households via the local area through the Green Homes Grant local authority delivery.
What improvements will I get and how can I do this?
These vouchers of up to £5,000.00 are to install at least one primary home installation or low carbing heating measure.
In effect you have to have a primary measure installed before anything else. If you choose to install one of the primary measures, you can use the voucher and it will also help your cost towards secondary measures. The subsidy for the secondary measure are capped to the value of the subsidy provided for the primary measure. So for instance if you receive £400.00 for the primary measure of something such as cavity wall installation then you can receive up to £400.00 for the secondary measure such as energy replacement door.
This may seem complicated but in effect you have to ensure that primary items come first.
What are the primary items/measures?
These are under constant review so the list below is not an exhaustive list. You should check with the Government websites for any amendments. These are as follows:-
1. Solid wall insulation
Insulation can be added to the inside or outside surface of your walls to help keep you wall and cut down heating bills. If your house was built before the 1920s then it is likely to have solid walls. Some newer houses are built without cavity wall in which case solid wall insulation would be the best option. Before 1920 most houses in the United Kingdom were all built with solid walls. After this date it became increasingly common to build houses with an inner and outer leaf with an air gap in between. This is known as cavity wall.
For solid walls the insulation layer of material is fixed to the inside surface of the wall or the outside.
2. Cavity wall insulation
You will find that most houses are built up with two layers of brickwork being an outer and inner leaf. The gap between them is often known as cavity and can be filled with insulation to make the house more efficient. If your home has cavity walls and they are suitable for insulation then you will need a specialist company to insulate them. This is normally done by drilling holes in the mortar joints of the outside walls and injection insulation through the holes so the cavity can be filled. The holes can then be refilled with the mortar to match the original.
The most common materials are mineral wool such as loft insulation rolls, or chopped up and blown into the cavity or alternatively polystyrene beads which are small spheres of expanding polystyrene bonding agent so that the beads will stay in place.
Some homes are not built with standard brick, stone or concrete and cavity wall insulation is not always suitable for these. They often have uninsulated cavities and are not suitable for standard insulation such as very narrow or uneven cavities, area of high exposure to driving rain and areas of a high risk of flood.
Some of these houses may be suitable for a more expensive foam injection or alternatively not at all. You should always try and find a specialist who deals with this.
3. Under floor insulation (solid floor or suspended floor)
Adding insulation to an existing solid floor cannot be always straightforward but it can keep the heat in.
If your house has a solid floor then it can be done in two different ways. It may be able to potentially add a rigid insulation board on top of the existing concrete with a layer of boarding on top of the concrete for a new floor level. You might lose some head room and you might have to adjust the skirting doors, fitted cupboards and the electrical socket or plumbing.
The alternative is to dig out the existing concrete further and add a new damp proof membrane or a layer of rigid insulation and new concrete screed. These are not always cost effective and can often be expensive and very intrusive.
This is the most common. If you have an unheated loft with less than 200mm of insulation at top floor level then it is possibly worth adding another layer to help keep the heat in. This is often done by laying rolls of flexible insulation material. If you already have some insulation then this can be added to as well.
Flat roof insulation
This is not always easy. If you have a flat roof then sometimes you can put insulation underneath it to keep it warm. However, if the house was built before the year 2000 then it is unlikely to have it and can prove expensive.
Room in the roof insulation
If you have your house converted with a room in the roof then it should already have some form of insulation. However, if it was done some considerable time ago then these can be generally insulated with mineral wall in a standard loft but you may need a firm to blow the material into areas that may have limited access.
There is also Park Home insulation that can be added.
Low carbon heat (where the home is suitably insulated) the following items can be included:-
- Air source heat pump
- Ground source heat pump
- Solar thermal
- Bio mass pellet boilers
These are all very specialist items and you should contact a contractor that does this.
All of the above are primary measures and as such you have to have one of these carried out before you can apply any form of secondary measures with a voucher to it.
The secondary measures are windows on doors.
Draught proofing. This is normally sealing the unwanted gaps around doors and windows to keep the heat in. It will cut down cold draughts throughout your home. This can be done by using draught proofing.
Double/triple glazing – replacing old single glazed windows with double glazing will make your home more comfortable and easy to heat. However, you need to ensure that there are no planning issues in you doing this. Also that it is not in a conservation area and/or in a listed building.
Secondary glazing – this is normally in addition to the exiting glazing and is placed behind the window. Again you need to ensure that there are planning regulations required.
Energy efficient replacement doors – this is replacing single glazed or solid doors previously installed.
Heating control insulations
Hot water tank thermostats
Hot water tank insulations
Heating controls such as smart heating, zone controls, intelligent delayed start thermostat and thermostatic radiator valves
Please click here to read our article on keeping a property safe during the winter time.
How do you apply for the above?
You will be able to apply from approximately the 20th September onwards. The best way to do this is to go on to the Government website being simpleenergyadvice.org.uk. Whereby you will be able to go through the Green Home Grant. It will ask you various questions about your property to see whether you are eligible for it or not. There are various questions that you will need to answer. The vouchers will be available until the 31st March 2021. You will need a quote from an accredited insulator before you can have the voucher approved.
The Government website outlines various approved contractors who will be able to help you in your area.
Please see the link below on the website you require:
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