DECC cuts Green Deal Home Improvement Fund incentive after £50m of applications

The Government is to cut the amount of cash available under the Green Deal Home Improvement Fund by £2,000 per household after 12,200 applications with a value of more than £50m were received in the first six weeks of the scheme, DECC announced yesterday (22 July).

More than £43m worth of vouchers for the fund have been issued with 7,925 households in England and Wales so far receiving vouchers under the scheme. The Home Improvement Fund has been seen as a boon for small businesses and contractors in the energy efficiency sector.

The £120m Home Improvement Fund was launched in June to drive participation in the Green Deal after the scheme was criticised for poor uptake earlier this year. The incentive fund offered households cashback payments worth up to £7,600 if they undertook home efficiency measures, with up to £6,000 available for solid wall insulation alone.

DECC had said it would review the Home Improvement Fund once it has passed a £50m application threshold. Yesterday’s announcement reduces the maximum grants on offer to households by £2,000.

The total cashback for efficiency improvements now available per household is £5,600.

The maximum payment of £7,600 was guaranteed for the first £50m worth of applications, however, as of Friday 25 July, the money available for installing solid wall insulation will be reduced from £6,000 to £4,000 and flue gas heat recovery units will be removed from the list of approved energy efficiency applications as of 5 August.

DECC confirmed that once the latest changes have taken place households will still be able to apply for vouchers worth up to £1,000 for installing two energy efficiency measures from the approved list, and up to £500 cashback if they apply within 12 months of buying a home. There is also £100 available to repay the cost of having a Green Deal assessment.

Under secretary of state for climate change Amber Rudd said: “Green Deal Home Improvement Fund vouchers have been flying out of the door. We’re delighted that so many families are already making the most of this very generous offer.

“Changes announced today ensure even more households can benefit from warmer homes using less energy. There’s up to £120 million in the pot this year, but it won’t be around forever so act now.”

Matt Field

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