How will the Chancellor’s Green Plan affect landlords?

green homes grant for landlords

Back in July, Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced a Green Homes Grant Scheme as part of the government’s £3 billion energy efficiency plan. The scheme, open from 30th September 2020, provides partial funding for landlords and homeowners to improve the energy efficiency of their properties.

What is the Green Homes Grant Scheme?

The Green Home Grant scheme encourages landlords and homeowners to invest in energy efficiency improvements for their property.

The £2 billion scheme covers all kinds of home improvements, including insulation of walls and roofs, double or triple glazing and low-carbon heating.

Why have the government introduced the Green Homes Grant Scheme?

The grant was introduced back in July as part of the chancellor’s wider £3 billion plan to cut emissions and prioritise energy-efficiency across the country. Sunak states that the scheme will improve the energy efficiency of 600,000 homes across the UK and help households save on annual bills.

The remaining £1 billion will be spent on making public buildings, such as schools and hospitals, more environmentally friendly – as well as £50 million being put into the retrofitting of social housing.

Business and Energy Secretary, Alok Sharma, has said: “Green Homes Grants are a key part of our plans to build back greener, helping make 600,000 homes more energy efficient with government vouchers while supporting 100,000 skilled jobs and supporting our transition to net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.”

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How can I find out what improvements I can make to my property?

Government advice and suggested improvements are available to landlords and homeowners via the Simple Energy Advice website.

The website offers a 5-minute survey, requiring a few details about your property (address, number of rooms, occupiers) and things that will impact your energy efficiency (such as flooring, window glazing and type of boiler).

Once completed, you will then received a personalised list of recommended energy efficiency improvements that you can make.

What works are covered by the Green Homes Grant for landlords?

The improvements available under the Green Homes Grant are split into primary and secondary measures.

Primary measures cover insulation and low carbon heat (where the home is suitably insulated):

  • Insulation
    • Solid walls
    • Cavity walls
    • Under-floor insulation (solid floors and suspended floors)
    • Lofts
    • Flat roofs
    • Room in roofs
    • Park home insulation
  • Low carbon heat
    • Air source heat pump
    • Ground source heat pump
    • Solar thermal panels
    • Biomass pellet boilers

Secondary measures are as follows:

  • Windows and doors
    • Draught proofing
    • Double or triple glazing (when replacing single glazing)
    • Secondary glazing (in addition to single glazing)
    • Energy-efficient replacement doors
  • Heating controls and insulation
    • Hot water tank thermostats
    • Hot water tank insulation
    • Heating controls (such as smart heating controls and intelligent delayed-start thermostats)

Further details on all of these improvements can be found on the Simple Energy Advice website.

How much will the landlord Green Homes Grant cover?

Landlords and homeowners can apply for vouchers to cover up to two-thirds of the costs of any energy-saving measures identified. The vouchers can cover two-thirds of costs of up to £5,000, meaning the maximum grant you could receive is £3,333. Larger grants may be available for lower-income households.

The vouchers must be used to install at least one primary home insulation or low carbon heating measure. If you install at least one primary measure, you can use your voucher to help cover the cost of secondary measures.

The subsidy for the secondary measure is capped at the amount of the primary measure: for example, if you receive £500 for cavity wall insulation (primary measure), you will be able to receive a maximum of £500 for any secondary measure.

How can landlords apply for the Green Homes Grant?

The Green Homes Grant is open for applications from 30th September 202 via the Simple Energy Advice website.

Landlords and homeowners can visit the website to check their eligibility, see what improvements can be made to their property, get an estimated cost and find accredited tradespeople to carry out the work.

Who can carry out the energy efficiency improvements?

After completing the Saving Energy Advice survey, landlords and homeowners have access to a list of fully accredited tradespeople in their area that can provide a quote and carry out the work needed.

Can I apply for the Green Homes Grant on multiple properties?

At the moment, it is unclear as to whether landlords can get a grant for more than one property.

No specific guidance has been provided by the government on this, but Simple Energy Advice expect that the government will release more information for landlords soon.

Once this information is available, we’ll be sure to keep our landlords in the loop. Sign up to our landlord newsletter to receive updates directly to your inbox.

What about my Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)?

All rental properties must have a valid Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) before they are let.

This involves a qualified assessor coming to the property and assessing the energy efficiency of the property. The assessor will grade the property: ‘A’ being the most efficient and ‘G’ being the least. All rental properties must be ‘E’ or above in order to be let.

The assessor will also provide a list of suggested works that will improve the energy performance rating of your property. If any of these fall under the primary measures listed earlier, you could apply for the Green Homes Grant to help cover costs at or below £5,000.

It’s important to note that costs of improvements recommended by an EPC assessor may go beyond this amount and some work will not fall under the measures covered by the scheme.

Book your Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) here and save up to 20% off with all other landlord services.

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