If you live in one of the thousands of properties around the UK that is less than energy efficient, then perhaps it’s time to look into the government’s Green Deal scheme, which has been launched in order to encourage home owners to utilise more green measures.
This is especially true for those that own a property that was built before the 1920s, examples of which are to be found prolifically around the country. Drafty windows, no real insulation to speak of, gaps around door frames, all of these things conspire to allow a significant amount of wasted energy (and cash) each year.
Green Deal for tenants and businesses
It’s not just home owners that can apply for the maximum of £10,000 that is offered as a part of the Green Deal scheme, businesses and tenants can too. With regard to the latter, they must of course have the landlord’s permission.
However, considering that the Department of Energy & Climate Change say: “the private rental sector has the highest proportion of least energy efficient homes – 5.8% of G rated properties compared with 3.4% in owner-occupier,” it would seem in the interests of landlords to agree.
Of course, the cash to make improvements is a low-interest loan, rather than an outright hand-out. However, the loan can be taken out over 25 years and this will have been offset by utility costs in this time. If you move house in that time, the new owners take on the debt as it’s paid for through utility bills.
What improvements can I make?
Under the Green Deal, there are plenty of home improvements you can make in order to make the property more energy efficient.
- Double glazing
- Energy saving devices such as boilers
- Green lighting
- Solar panels
- Heat pumps
This is not an exhaustive list by any means, there are many improvements that you can make, depending on the needs of your home and family.
Start with the simple stuff
If your home needs a lot of work to become energy efficient, then the first issue to look at should be the doors, windows and insulation. These days, even if your home is in a listed area, there are double glazing solutions to suit you and Anglian Home Improvements is a good place to start your research.
In the first instance, when you apply for the scheme, an approved assessor will visit your home to help you figure out your best options. If the expected savings you can make by improving the home will outweigh the cost of the improvements, then you will be approved for the scheme.
It’s thought that around 26 million homes around the UK could benefit from the Green Deal and as such, if you’re not sure then it’s certainly worth checking. Not only because of the benefits to you and your family, but to help reduce carbon emissions. It’s thought that the scheme could contribute significantly to reducing emissions by as much as 80% by 2050.
You can apply for the scheme through an approved assessor or provider, or contact the Green Deal Initiative for more information about the application process. It’s worth looking into, as the cost savings to your energy bills can be significant in the long term, not to mention the aesthetic improvements that you can make to your home.