Even with the Green Deal and the removal of a number of grants aimed at those on low incomes, it is still possible to get free or very cheap insulation. Despite this, many people are still reluctant to go through the process – possibly fearing that it might be very complicated, that they won’t qualify or that they may end up paying more than they expected. The following tips should show you how easy it is to apply and what great deals are still available.
Do I qualify?
Your first step will be finding out if you will qualify for free loft insulation or free cavity wall insulation. In most cases free insulation is offered to people who claim state benefits including income support, disability living allowance, housing benefits and pension credits. If you get child tax credits or working tax credits and your income is under £15,592 you are also eligible.
Even if you do not qualify for these discounts you may still be able to get a significant discount through other means. These may include money off offers from energy companies under their Energy Company Obligation (ECO) scheme. Sometimes these are aimed at those on low incomes – but not always.
It will also be necessary to make sure your home qualifies. You need to be privately renting or be a homeowner and have the right type of home. Flats are harder to insulate and certain construction methods cannot be insulated.
How do I apply?
- By far the easiest method to find out if you are able to claim free insulation is to use this web site to find government grants for energy installations. You will be asked a few questions regarding your eligibility and will get a list of the grants which are best suited to your needs. It is then entirely up to you if you use the website to make your online application. It couldn’t be easier.
- You can also approach various energy companies directly. Under the ECO scheme they are obliged to offer discounts by the government. Many are currently offering some good deals such as Eon who have free insulation for those on benefits. You will simply need to fill in an online form or call them and they will send out an assessor to make sure your home qualifies.
- Your council, Citizens Advice and other agencies will also be able to apply for the insulation schemes on your behalf. Simply visit them or give them a call and they will help you to fill in the forms.
What happens next?
An assessor will be sent out to your home and they will make sure that your home is suitable. They will determine which type of insulation is right for you (loft, wall cavity or both) and they will then arrange a time to do the work.
Should I be careful about anything?
If you have been offered free or cheap insulation – read the small print. The installation may not include loft clearance or other extras. Make sure that you will not be charged for anything you were not expecting. You also need to be sure the installer is fully insured and reputable. Do your homework and consider other quotes as well.