Unsure how well insulated your home is? As of 30th September 2020, the Government is offering UK homeowners to make energy-saving changes to their homes with the Green Homes Grant. There are only 600,000 vouchers available to get your home going green, so if you’re interested, now’s the time to apply and make sure you can make the most of free benefits.
Each government-funded voucher will allow you to make green improvements to your home, with the government supplying ? of the overall costs. The scheme is available to most homeowners in England, covering landlords too. You can apply for up to £5000 in vouchers if you fit the following criteria;
- You’re the owner of your own home
- You’re a private or social landlord
Because the Green Homes Grant is designed to help bring outdated homes up to a high energy saving standard, the owners of new builds that haven’t been lived in yet and non-domestic properties aren’t eligible to apply. If you’re a tenant, you can ask your landlord to look into the scheme on your behalf.
It’s also worth noting that if you’re currently eligible for government benefits, the Green Home Grant will cover you up to £10,000, so you can make the home improvements you need, fully subsidised.
To take part in the Green Homes Grant, you first need to start looking into trusted tradespeople. As the scheme is only open for six months, TrustMark tradespeople are likely going to be very busy, very quickly. Getting in early with your research will make sure you can get work carried out on your home quickly, safely and at a decent price. The government recommends that you collect 2 or 3 quotes from tradespeople on the site to make sure your vouchers go as far as possible. Once you’ve got an idea of the improvements you want to make, head to the Government website to apply.
Saving Money At Home
Whether you’re a homeowner or renter, there are plenty of ways to save money around the home on a day to day basis. As well as making the most of schemes like the Green Homes Grant, you could try simple tips and tricks to put a pin in the amount of energy you’re using.
Cutting Down on Your Daily Usage
While the vouchers should go a long way towards shoring up your home against unexpected energy costs, there are plenty of other steps you could take to keep your bills down this winter too. Some of these will be covered by secondary measures within the grant – if you have enough budget left over – but others you can take simply and cheaply. A great place to start is with making the most of the resources already available to you; when it’s sunny, open up your curtains to make the most of natural light and heat, use draught excluders to stop any heat escaping, and keep a pair of extra socks and a jumper close by if you find yourself getting chilly while you’re at home.
Keeping an Eye On Other Available Grants
If you’re not eligible for the Green Homes Grant, or your home needs more work carrying out, it’s worth looking into other grants or schemes you could apply for. Simple Energy Advice, the official government endorsed site, has lots of information about the kinds of grants you could apply for, as well as a tool to find tradespeople that can help you get going with your green home improvements.
The most common grants available are those for those over 65, or those receiving benefits from the Government. These include the Winter Fuel Payments, Cold Weather Payments for when the temperature drops below 0° for 7 days in a row and the Warm Home Discount. Checking in on the grants potentially available to you and your family means you’ll stay in the know, and helps you save on your bills, even on a one-off basis.