A nationwide insulation funding scheme aimed at middle income householders living in energy inefficient properties has been welcomed by insulation specialist Actis – and is set to see merchants being busy when it launches in 2023.
The £1 billion ECO+ scheme, which launches in the spring and will run for up to three years, builds on the existing ECO (Energy Company Obligation) schemes, which have been running since 2013.
Actis UK and Ireland sales director Mark Cooper welcomed the move, which covers home owners not eligible for the existing funding, whose target audience is people on benefits or in fuel poverty.
“More than 25% of the UK’s traditional housing stock is more than a century old, much of it very leaky when it comes to keeping heat in,” he said.
“Research shows that more than 12 million homes had EPCs of D or worse in 2020. In fact, we have some of the least energy efficient housing stock in Europe. Installing insulation is the most cost-effective way of stemming the flow of heat escaping from these homes.
“With energy prices affecting everyone, not to mention the impact on the environment, it makes sense to ensure that the existing building fabric is as energy efficient as possible. Hopefully this new scheme will encourage people who have been considering improving the energy efficiency of their homes to go for it.”
The original ECO schemes have so far seen energy efficiency measures installed in 2.4 million homes nationwide.
The new initiative is aimed at those whose homes are in council tax bands A to D in England, A to E in Scotland and A to C in Wales – and which have EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) ratings of D or lower.
Eligible households will be able to receive grants of up to £1,500 for insulation, which the government estimates will save them around £310 a year on their heating bills.
Details are yet to be announced, and householders are being advised to contact their local council or energy supplier to find out whether they are participating.
The news follows an announcement in the autumn statement that the government is to invest an additional £6bn between 2025 and 2028 to support its ‘energy demand reduction target’ to reduce demand by 15% by 2030.