Hundreds of households in Buckinghamshire are set to benefit from new funding to make their homes more energy efficient as part of a joint project paid for by Central Government funding.
The news will be welcomed by households across the county, many of whom are at risk of being pushed into fuel poverty due to rising fuel costs.
The grants are for households with a gross annual income of less than £30,000 or who are receiving eligible benefits, and properties must have an energy rating of D, E, F or G.
The scheme will benefit both homeowners and those who rent privately. The new grant funding will potentially help more than 400 households in the county and includes properties that are ‘off grid’, currently using an alternative energy supply, such as oil.
For owner occupiers, the work will be carried out for free. However, for rental properties (whether private or social), the landlord will be expected to pay at least one third of the cost towards the work.
Applications are open now to eligible households at: buckinghamshire-applications.co.uk
The BEIS (Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy) Sustainable Warmth Competition which ran last year invited bids from local authorities for a share of the available funding. Buckinghamshire Council partnered with the Greater South East Net Zero Hub – who applied for funding on the council’s behalf, securing just under £5m of capital funding. This will be allocated as follows:
- £3.2 million to support low-income households in Bucks on the gas grid with energy efficiency and low carbon heating measures such as external wall insulation, underfloor insulation and air source heat pumps.
- £1.7 million to support low-income households in Bucks with energy efficiency and low carbon heating measures such as cavity wall insulation, solar PV and loft insulation.
The Hub has since contracted with City Energy who will be the delivery partner for the schemes across Buckinghamshire.
Gareth Williams, Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Environment, said:
“This is great news for hundreds of households in the county. Improving your home’s energy efficiency will lower heating bills and reduce carbon emissions, but not all households have the capital available to finance such upgrades without support through schemes such as Sustainable Warmth. This underlines the council’s commitment to tackling climate change and is a great example of the co-benefits to society of many mitigation and adaption measures.”
Steve Bowles, Cabinet Member for Communities, commented:
“This new funding comes at a critical time when many householders are struggling with rising bills. As well as residents being able to apply directly for the grants at buckinghamshire-applications.co.uk – our housing and climate change teams will work together with colleagues at the Hub to ensure all those who are eligible know about the scheme are given the opportunity to benefit.”
For more information on the funding visit the GSENZH website.
Anyone worried about their energy bills can access free advice and information via the Big Energy Saving campaign being run jointly by Citizen’s Advice and the Energy Saving Trust. It includes ideas on how to save energy at home.
Bucks residents struggling to pay bills or afford food and essential goods can also apply for grants via the council’s Helping Hand team.