Back in August, the Green Home Grant was a no-brainer to me.
This will create thousands of jobs. It will reduce the bills for tenants. Will reduce our carbon footprint. And will also benefit landlords who can look to reduce maintenance costs.
My previous thinking can be found in https://duffmoney.com/2020/08/07/energy-efficiency-measures/.
Although it does sound good, getting the grants is not easy. “Anyone planning to apply should be prepared for delays, however,” according to Ruth Jackson-Kirby in Moneyweek.
How to Apply
It might not be easy to get the green grant but 100% give it a go. Go to https://www.gov.uk/apply-green-homes-grant to see if you are eligible.
You go through the application and you are asked a series of questions. This will determine your eligibility.
If you can apply, you are told what improvements you can make under the scheme. The next step is to get quotes from https://www.trustmark.org.uk/.
When you have quotes from a Trustmark tradesman, you can then complete the application. Hopefully, you can complete the application and benefit from the green grant.
How the Vouchers can be used
In most cases, the voucher will be a maximum of £5000. If you receive certain benefits, you can receive up to £10,000.
Whatever the cost of the home improvements, the vouchers will cover two thirds of the cost. For example, if the total cost is £3000, you would have to pay £1000 and the voucher would cover £2000.
The Government will issue £2bn worth of vouchers and the work must be done before 31st March 2021. This time limit complicates things.
To complicate things further, the jobs required are split into two parts. The two parts are Primary Jobs and Secondary Jobs.
First of all, you have to get any Primary jobs done like cavity wall insulation, loft insulation, biomass pellet boilers etc.
If you have had one of the Primary jobs done, you can then look to get a Secondary job done. Secondary jobs like triple glazing, new doors, thermostats, heating controls etc.
There will be a lot of demand for the vouchers as we all like something for nothing. This will mean there will be limited tradesmen available.
All of this means it will be difficult to achieve within the next 6 months.
My Experience with the Process
Despite my early optimism, my attempt at getting the Green Grants failed miserably.
An example is an old terraced house that I rent out. It needs loft insulation, cavity wall insulation and new windows and doors.
I answered all of the questions and the form indicated that I was eligible. The next step was to get quotes from a Trustmark tradesman in my local area.
This is when my attempts ended.
I contacted 15 Trustmark companies within a 15-mile radius. None of them wanted anything to do with the Green Grant scheme. And they all indicated that it was just a Government PR scheme.
They said the timescale wasn’t achievable given the conditions explained above. Most of them were unavailable until early 2021 without the added complications.
A builder almost came to the terraced house to give me a quote but never made it. He called later in the week and said it wasn’t worth the hassle.
“The Green Homes Grant scheme is one every English homeowner should check out. It may provide serious free cash that should both improve the energy efficiency of your home and your home’s value. However, that’s far from saying everyone can benefit, and the scheme isn’t flawless,” says Martin Lewis (Money Saving Expert).
For more information visit https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/utilities/green-homes-grant/.
From my experience, it is far from flawless.
Don’t take my word for it, do your own research. Look into it yourself and hopefully you can benefit from the vouchers.