The existing British property stock is amongst the oldest and leakiest in the Western world and with energy prices soaring, the Government have stepped in to help with the launch of the Green Deal.
The Green Deal aims to transform the UK's building stock to make all properties warmer and cheaper to run, without having to pay all of the upfront costs.
From February 2013, all householders (including homeowners, tenants and landlords) will be able to benefit from energy advice and 'pay-as-you-save' loans for energy efficiency improvements to their property. Covering everything from loft insulation and double glazing through to energy efficient boilers and renewable energy technologies, the cost of the installations are repaid through the savings on your utility bills.
New Energy Company Obligation grants (ECO) will also be available for disadvantaged groups and hard-to-treat homes (including properties with solid walls or non-standard cavities) and will integrate with the Green Deal, allowing an energy supplier subsidy for qualifying properties. This means that for some households, these new installations may be completely free of charge.
All homeowners and tenants will benefit from a comprehensive and impartial Green Deal Assessment of their property, and will be able to shop around between different offers in the market place. Customers can use the new Green Deal finance to pay for the energy efficiency measure up to the limit of the "golden rule" or the can use it alongside their own investment where they want other improvement measures which are not expected to generate savings on their energy bill.
Green Deal Assessments
An independently approved Green Deal Assessor will assess your home to help you decide if the Green Deal is right for you. If it is, they will make recommendations for improvements.
You will then receive a Green Deal Assessment pack confirming what is being recommended and how much you could save on your energy bills. You can request a quote from any approved Green Deal Provider.
Green Deal Quotes
Using the quotes you receive (derived from your Green Deal Assessment); you can compare the cost of the improvements and the repayments. You can then decide which, if any, improvements you want and which approved Green Deal Provider you want to install them.
Your chosen Green Deal Provider will arrange for the measures to be installed by an approved Green Deal Installer. This work will be quality assured and carry a warranty.
Then, enjoy a more comfortable home! Your Green Deal Plan charge repayments will be added automatically to your electricity bill. For tips on how to maximise your energy savings, visit greendealadvice.org.
The "Golden Rule", set out in legislation, specifies that any charge attached to a householder's electricity bill through the installation of Green Deal products must be less than the expected savings from the improvement (over its full lifetime, which can sometimes be up to 25 years).
Of course, not every measure will necessarily pay for itself over its lifetime. In such cases the building owner will be able to contribute to some of the cost to ensure that the Golden Rule can be met. However, some homes, such as low income and vulnerable households and hard-to-treat buildings, may be able to get ECO funding to substitute any shortfall, or fund the retrofits entirely.
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