Government Green Deal cashback scheme announced

Ed Davey
Ed Davey
Government Green Deal ‘cashback’ scheme announced. It’s ‘first come, first served’, so apply now.

Property assessments are currently being booked for December onwards. Register your interest now to help ensure measures are carried out as early as possible.

Households taking up the offer should be saving money on their energy bills within two years, as new government policies come into force, Chris Huhne pledged. According to government estimates, the average household will pay £94 a year less for energy than they would without the introduction of these policies.

The Green Deal is set to improve the energy efficiency of British properties, both domestic and commercial, and involves the establishment of a framework enabling private firms to offer consumers energy efficiency improvements to their homes, community spaces and businesses with no upfront cost. The scheme is funded in part by the energy companies who are expected to contribute around £1.3bn in the first year and up to £14bn by the end of the decade. Whilst the scheme is subsidised by the taxpayer, payments are to be recouped in instalments on the consumer’s energy bill.

This means consumers will see the Green Deal charge alongside the reductions in energy use which generate overall savings on their bill. It also means that if they move out and cease to be the bill-payer at that property, the financial obligation moves to the next bill payer: the charge is only paid whilst the benefits are enjoyed. The new bill payer should see lower energy bills and have the benefit of a property improved by the various measures initiated by the previous occupier.

Up to £120million in government cash back for those who opt for the Green Deal has been announced, with early adopters getting higher levels of support. The amount of cash back offered will depend on what measures are taken but could be worth over £1000 per household.

“The green deal is about putting energy consumers back in control of their bills and banishing Britain’s draughty homes to the history books,” Huhne said. “By stimulating billions of pounds of private-sector investment, the green deal will revolutionise the way that we keep our homes warm, making them cosier, more efficient and all at no upfront cost.”

Home owners are free to finance the improvements in any way that they decide. They can opt to pay for the work upfront, in whole or in part. In this way, the Green Deal differs from existing lending – it is not the same as a conventional loan since the bill-payer is not liable for the full capital cost of the improvements, only the charges due whilst they are the bill-payer. This is a market mechanism, funded mainly by private capital, which the government believes will deliver far more to consumers than any sort of top-down Government programme.

Significant consumer protections will be built into the framework to protect both the original occupier and any who follow after. The scheme will open for applications at the end of January 2013 at the same time as the Green Deal becomes available.

£120million in government cashback for adopters of Green Deal has been announced, with early adopters getting higher levels. Cashback levels will depend on the measures taken and the number of measures and could be worth up to £1000 per household.

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