Extension to Green Homes Grant
- Published: Tuesday 24 November, 2020
- By: Commercial Trust
On the 18th of November, the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson announced that the Green Homes Grant will be extended in England until the end of March 2022.
This means that homeowners and landlords will have a year longer to complete energy-efficient upgrades to their homes, with the government covering two-thirds of the cost up to £5,000.
What is the Green Homes Grant?
The Green Homes Grant forms part of the plan aimed at the UK’s key target for net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.
The scheme covers a variety of benefits, including; insulation, upgrading glazing, and installing low-carbon heating systems. To find out more about the work which the grant covers, read our last story on the grant here.
The extension has been welcomed in the community, as many landlords were concerned that the timeframe would mean that projects would have been left incomplete before the original deadline of March 2021.
Tradespeople need to be TrustMark registered and have a Microgeneration Scheme Certification or Publicly Accessible Standards certification, to carry out these home improvements as part of the scheme.
The reason for the extension?
Some are questioning as to whether the extension has been implemented to make up for the delay in work due to COVID-19.
The government has made it clear that as long as the installers follow the COVID-secure guidelines, the work for the Green Homes Grant can continue to take place.
The grant extension is also welcomed by the landlord community, as the Government plan to raise the minimum EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) standard for rental homes from grade D to C in April 2025.
The changes that are made with the Green Homes Grant often provide significant increases to the EPC, at the benefit of a lowered cost.
The announcement followed criticism from tradespeople, landlords, and industry experts, that the deadline could be oversubscribed, with 300,000 homeowners prospectively missing out due to demand.
Climate change minister Lord Callanan shared:
“The Green Homes Grant scheme gives homeowners and landlords right across the country a cheaper way to make their homes more energy-efficient and cut their bills – all while making their contribution to tackling climate change”
“Today’s announcement means an extra year to take advantage of this new scheme, helping households and tradespeople who can plan their workload and create new jobs in their communities.”
Find out if you're eligible for the grant by using the Simple Energy Advice (SEA) service, and to check which energy-saving or low carbon measures can be added to your home.
Concerns around the scheme
Some landlords are facing barriers when it comes to their voucher application, as work cannot begin until the voucher has been received.
The application process is reportedly very slow and causing some projects to be placed on hold over the winter.
Even when the eligibility has been assessed, and the voucher attained, others still are having issues booking a qualified tradesperson.
This may be down to the lack of qualified tradespeople in their local area, or the application process to qualify for the TrustMark recommendation which appears to have further hurdles.
There have been reports that landlords are facing overinflated quotes when applying for improvements covered by the grant, so much so that a Green Homes Grant Fraud Team has been created.
Overall it appears that it is very much down to luck and location as to whether the Green Home Grants improvements will be implemented in time.
The Rest of the UK
The Green Homes Grant is only available in England, however, Scotland has access to funding via Home Energy Scotland and Wales are supported via Nest, both follow a similar structure to the Green Homes Grant.
Read more about the Green Homes Grant extension on the government website.
This information should not be interpreted as financial advice. Mortgage and loan rates are subject to change.