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Government Energy Grants: Green Homes Grant

Fiona Leake
Fiona Leake
  | Edited by Tom Church
Updated 9th March 2021

The Green Homes Grant allows homeowners to use up to £5,000 in vouchers to make their home more energy-efficient. However, there are rumours that the scheme could be ending this year, so it’s important to take advantage of the Green Homes Grant while you still can!

What is the Green Homes Grant?

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The Green Homes Grant is a government scheme that provides homeowners in England with a voucher up to £5,000 to pay for energy-efficient home improvements. This includes things such as double glazing and insulation. 

How does the Green Homes Grant scheme work?

The Green Homes Grant scheme works by providing homeowners with a voucher that covers up to two-thirds of the cost of their energy efficiency home improvements. This is a maximum of £5,000 per household. 

This means that you’ll still have to pay something towards your energy efficiency home improvement, the government will just help out.

For example, if you installed insulation that cost £3,000, the Green Homes Grant would give you £2,000 and you’d have to pay the remaining £1,000.

If you’re on low income or receive benefits, then the Green Homes Grant scheme can cover the entire cost of your energy-efficient improvements - up to £10,000!

Who is eligible for the Green Homes Grant?

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If you’re a homeowner in England then you can apply for the Green Homes Grant for up to £5,000.

The government has confirmed that flat owners can take advantage of the scheme too. 

If you rent your home, you won’t be eligible for the Green Homes Grant scheme but your landlord will be. So, you could always discuss it with them.

Who is eligible for the £10,000 Green Homes Grant?

The £10,000 Green Homes Grant will pay for the entire cost of your energy-efficient home improvements. This grant isn’t available to landlords as the home must be owner-occupied. 

You must be on at least one benefit to qualify for the £10,000 grant. Find out if you qualify here.

What can I use the Green Homes Grant for?

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Unfortunately, you can’t pick and choose which home improvements the Green Homes Grant pays for, there are certain restrictions. 

To receive Green Homes Grant vouchers, you must install a primary improvement. These are:

  • Insulation - this includes wall, floor, roof or loft insulation.
  • Low carbon heating - this includes solar thermal and biomass boilers.

You can then receive the same funding for secondary improvements. Once you’ve installed one of the primary improvements, you can then use the vouchers to install further secondary improvements.

You’ll only receive vouchers for secondary improvements up to the amount you received for primary improvements. For example, you might have received £2,000 for a biomass boiler. This means that you won’t receive any more than £2,000 for any secondary improvements you make. 

There’s a maximum of £5,000 per household for energy efficiency improvements. So, if you received more than £2,500 for primary improvements, you’ll receive less for secondary ones. 

Secondary improvements include: 

  • Draught proofing.
  • Double or triple glazing (when replacing single glazing). 
  • Hot water tank insulation. 

A full list of primary and secondary improvements covered by the Green Homes Grant can be found on the government website.

Remember - the primary work MUST be finished before you can receive vouchers for secondary improvements.

Can the Green Homes Grant be used for solar panels? 

Solar panels are covered by the Green Homes Grant and are considered a primary improvement. Read our guide on solar panels to find out whether they are right for you.

Does the Green Homes Grant include boilers? 

The Green Homes Grant won’t provide you with vouchers for boilers. However, you can get vouchers for installing low carbon heating. This includes hybrid heat pumps, solar thermal and biomass boilers.

Is the Green Homes Grant for double glazing? 

Yes, you can receive a Green Homes Grant voucher towards your double glazing but certain conditions do apply:

  • You must have installed a ‘primary’ improvement first. Double glazing is a ‘secondary improvement’.
  • You’ll only receive vouchers if you’re replacing single glazing. If you already have double glazing that you’re replacing, you won’t qualify. 

Can I choose any trader to do Green Homes Grant improvements? 

You can only use traders who are TrustMark approved or MCS registered to carry out work in your home under the Green Homes Grant scheme. 

You can find a list of TrustMark approved traders here and a list of MCS registered traders here. The government also has an approved trader list here.

How do I apply to the Green Homes Grant?

Rumours suggest that the Green Homes Grant scheme could end in April 2021. Whilst this hasn’t been confirmed yet,if you’re thinking of taking advantage of the scheme, now is the right time! Here’s how to apply:

Step 1: Check what grants you can get

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The first step before you apply is to use the government’s eligibility checker.

This will give you an idea of what you could be eligible for but it doesn’t guarantee you the Green Homes Grant vouchers. So, don’t go ahead and book any work to be done until you have been officially granted a voucher. 

Step 2: Find approved traders and get quotes

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You can find government-approved traders in your area by using this installer search tool. The government suggests getting three different quotes, so, if you have time, this is a good idea to find the cheapest option. 

When you apply, it’ll ask you for one quote, so pick the cheapest one! 

Remember, you can only use traders who are TrustMark approved or MCS registered.

Step 3: Apply for the vouchers and wait for approval

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You can now go ahead and apply for the Green Homes Grant vouchers. 

Make sure you wait for approval before going ahead, or you could end up paying for the whole improvement!

You can apply for a voucher here on the government website. You’ll need the following:

If your application’s successful then you’ll be emailed the voucher(s). You’ll receive more than one voucher if you’ve applied for different improvements.

It’s crucial that you only start work once the voucher has been issued. Any work that’s carried out before the voucher has been approved won’t be paid for. 

Once the energy efficiency home improvements have been made, the tradesperson will issue you with an invoice with what you need to pay. You’ll pay this directly to the tradesperson.

Step 4: Redeem your Green Homes Grant voucher

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The email with your voucher will explain how you can go about redeeming it. You must redeem the voucher within 90 days.

You can redeem your voucher on the government website. You’ll need to provide the following:

  • Green Homes Grant reference number (you can find this in the voucher email).
  • Voucher number (find it in the email).
  • The postcode and email address you applied with.
  • E-copy of the tradesperson’s invoice (provide one for each improvement you’ve had done).

You should then receive confirmation that you’ve redeemed your voucher. The grant will be paid to the installer for you.  

How long does it take to get a Green Homes Grant? 

There hasn’t been an official timescale released by the government and it can vary. It can take weeks but in some cases, it takes longer, potentially months. This is because sometimes you’ll be asked to provide additional information to prevent fraud.

The most common reasons why you might be asked for more information include: 

  • Quotes higher than expected.
  • No paperwork.
  • Incorrect paperwork.
  • The type of work isn’t covered by the Green Homes Grant scheme.

Make sure you double-check your application before applying. This will ensure that there are no delays.

When is the Green Homes Grant scheme ending?

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Newspapers have been reporting that the Green Homes Grant could be completely pulled at the end of the tax year - 5th April 2021. However, the government has not yet confirmed this so it’s not guaranteed that the scheme will be ending soon. 

However, if you’re planning to get energy-efficient home improvements done soon, it’s worth applying now. Just in case the scheme does come to an abrupt end soon.

We’ll be monitoring the situation and will update this guide as soon as the government has supplied more information.

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