The government has finally revealed more details of its Green Homes Grant scheme, which will give landlords and home owners significant public funds to improve their properties.
Announced on 9th July by Chancellor Rishi Sunak, the £2 billion scheme will fund up to two-thirds of the cost of home improvements for some 600,000 properties with a cap of £5,000.
The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government has now revealed how the scheme will work, and what sort of improvements are included within it.
It says tradespeople must register for TrustMark accreditation to take part in the scheme, which will cover green home improvements ranging from insulation of walls, floors and roofs, to the installation of low-carbon heating, like heat pumps or solar thermal.
In addition, households can use the remainder of their voucher, up to the value of the spend on the primary measure/s, for further secondary energy saving measures:
- double or triple glazing/secondary glazing, when replacing single glazing
- upgrading to energy efficient doors
- hot water tank/appliance tank thermostats/heating controls
To access the voucher scheme, it is expected that landlords will need to access the Simple Energy Advice (SEA) service and follow a process which will suggest appropriate home improvements and offer a list of approved TrustMark and MCS registered tradespeople.
MHCLG says these measures could help landlords save up to £600 a year on their energy bills.
Households on low income will receive vouchers covering 100% of the cost of the improvements, up to a maximum of £10,000.
“Green home improvements will save people money on their energy bills, help to cut carbon emissions, and create new work for many thousands of builders, plumbers and other tradespeople,” says Business and Energy Secretary Rt Hon Alok Sharma.
“Our TrustMark scheme will guarantee that building work is completed to a high standard by accredited tradespeople, ensuring consumers are fully protected.”
The scheme has its critics. Generation Rent says: “Landlords have been allowed to get away with letting out poorly insulated homes and as a result too many private renters cannot afford to heat their homes properly.
“The Green Homes Grant is a huge opportunity to rectify this, but nothing will happen unless the government makes it easy for renters to benefit and tells them about it.
“If renters are shut out of the process we’ll miss this chance to improve the quality of rented homes and reduce renters’ bills.”
The Government has previously indicated that residential rental properties should be achieving an Energy Performance Certificate rating of D or better by 2025 and C or better by 2030.
The MHCLG announcement was made today within details of a new £1.3 billion infrastructure scheme to build 45,000 homes and create up to 85,000 jobs including for ‘shovel ready’ schemes and new homes on brownfield sites.
Ben Beadle, Chief Executive for the NRLA said: “Today’s announcement is good news for landlords and tenants, and demonstrates what can be achieved when the Government works constructively with landlords.
“Energy efficient homes are clearly important to improving health, reducing household bills and meeting the Government’s ambitions around carbon reduction. We welcome the clarity around what measures will be included as part of the Green Homes Grant scheme and encourage landlords to make use of this important initiative when it opens.”