High Street retailers such as Marks and Spencers and John Lewis will soon be helping homeowners with insulation, double glazing, solar panels and a range of other improvements.
The initiative is being led by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC). It aims to help reduce the energy use from homes and meet the government’s carbon reduction target of 34% by 2020 and 80% by 2050.
The scheme will be called the Green Deal and is planned to operate on a pay as you save basis. It works by the government lending money to make home improvements that will lower running costs. The occupants will continue to pay energy bills at their old rate while the savings accumulate and repay the funding.
The financial responsibility for paying back the funding stays with the property rather than with the owner and any new occupants continue the arrangement which will eventually lead to an annual profit from energy savings. The scheme is expected to be launched in the autumn.
Consumers are likely to be able to access loans of up to £10,000 to pay for 23 different types of improvements and the process starts with a survey by an accredited energy assessor who produces an EPC showing the improvements that are relevant. Things continue with a Green Deal advisor and on to a provider (Like Marks and Spenser, John Lewis, B&Q, etc).
But unlike other home improvements, the provider will only use certified installers to carry out the work. These people will be trained and monitored and will have processes in place to take responsibility for the work they have carried out and for issues such as complaints and safety. When works are complete a final EPC will confirm the property’s new efficiency.
The Government are describing the scheme as the largest change to British Housing since the Second World War.
Which measures will your home or buy to let portfolio benefit from? Click here to book your energy survey and find out!
(The Green Deal will be for commercial properties too – watch this space!)