The government has announced the launch of the Great British Insulation Scheme – a £1 billion drive to help those most in need heat their home for less.
Under the scheme, households in lower council tax bands with less energy-efficient homes will be offered upgrades to their homes – such as roof, loft or cavity wall insulation – which could cut their annual energy bill by an average of between £300 to £400.
The scheme extends support to a wider range of households compared to other existing government-funded initiatives. Those eligible for support under the Great British Insulation Scheme include families in council tax bands A-D in England, A-E in Scotland and Wales, with an Energy Performance Certificate rating of D or below.
This support will run alongside the existing Energy Company Obligation scheme, which offers free home energy efficiency improvements, such as insulation, heat pumps, and solar panels to families on low incomes.
The 300,000 homes set to benefit come on top of the 2.4 million ones that have so far received energy efficiency measures under existing support schemes.
People can find out if they are eligible by using an online checker tool. The tool asks a series of questions - including how they heat their home, whether their home has solid or cavity walls, and if they are receiving any benefits.
A separate checker has also been launched for the Home Upgrade Grant, which could help as many as 25,000 off-the-gas-grid homes that have an EPC rating of D to G. People can find out if they qualify for energy efficiency support - ranging from insulation and draft proofing to new windows and doors, as well as heat pumps and solar panels.
Customers using the online tools will then be referred to either their energy supplier, for support from the ECO programme and Great British Insulation Scheme, or their local council for the Home Upgrade Grant, to take the next step in making their home more energy efficient.
Claire Coutinho, the newly appointed Energy Security Secretary, said: “We are determined to help families keep their homes warm through the winter months and save on their energy costs.
“Our Great British Insulation Scheme will help hundreds of thousands of people, including some of the most vulnerable in society, get the upgrades their homes need, while cutting their energy bills.”
Mike Thornton, Chief Executive, Energy Saving Trust, said: “Improving the energy efficiency of our homes is a vital part of addressing both the energy crisis and climate emergency.
“By reducing demand for fossil fuels it provides a triple win long-term solution for cutting energy bills, decreasing carbon emissions and improving energy security.
“The launch of the Great British Insulation Scheme is therefore a welcome development as it will mean more households are eligible for financial support for insulation measures and comes at a crucial time as we approach the colder winter months.”