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Guide to making energy improvements

Guide to making energy improvements

Where to start?

If you’re having works done in the property it is important you use a qualified and accredited person or company. If you’re paying for the works we advise you get at least 3 quotes as prices can vary significantly. The works you have done in your property should be covered by a guarantee or warranty. To make sure your works are eligible, use only accredited installers. Check on the Trade Accreditation Schemes list so you know what to look for.

Each type of improvement works is listed below. There are details and links under each section to show the benefit of the works and savings they will make, as well as help finding an installer and relevant Trade Accreditation Schemes. The web links direct people to the Energy Saving Trust website, a charitable organisation offering independent advice, at www.energysavingtrust.co.uk or phone 0300 123 1234.

Check out the energy saving quick wins to help you save more money on your energy bills.

Doing works yourself?

If you are looking to do some energy efficiency improvements and/or buy the materials yourself, check with your local building suppliers and merchants for any discounts they may have available for local landlords.

There are also helpful tutorial videos on the Energy Saving Trust website showing how to carry out different works effectively.

Home insulation

Cavity wall and loft insulation is worth around £700 and can slice about £300 off energy bills each year. Some energy firms are offering them free to certain groups.

Some providers give insulation away to suitable homes regardless of income, while some require you to be receiving certain benefits such as pension credit. There are also schemes available for other types of insulation such as solid wall and draught proofing so it’s worth finding out what is available.

To find out the latest schemes and eligibility criteria either ring the Energy Saving Advice Service on 0300 123 1234 (England and Wales) and answer a few quick questions or use this link to check the Money Saving Expert website.

Click on each of the links below to find out more about each of the types of works, the benefits and savings they will make. You can also see how to find an installer and the relevant Trade Accreditation Schemes and warranty guarantees to look out for. Types of energy efficiency insulation options:

Heating and Hot Water

The Energy Saving Trust says boilers account for about 55% of what people spend each year on energy bills, so an efficient boiler makes a big difference. Depending on your boiler's age, a shiny new efficient one could save you up to £260/year. Together with the right heating controls you can save money and feel warm.

Some providers are offering free replacement boilers and other grants and schemes. To find out the latest schemes and eligibility criteria either ring the Energy Saving Advice Service on 0300 123 1234 (England and Wales) and answer a few quick questions or use this link to check the Money Saving Expert website.

Types of energy efficiency heating and hot water system options:

Don’t use gas for heating?

If you use heating oil, have you considered joining an oil bulk buying scheme? For further information visit Community Lincs Community Oil Buying Scheme.

Windows

Energy Efficient windows

Lighting

Energy Efficient lighting

Smart meters and prepayment meters

Smart Meters

Guide to prepayment meters

Other energy schemes and grants

Some residents may be able to get £140 towards energy bills next winter

The Warm Home Discount requires the big suppliers, by law, to help vulnerable customers pay for energy. Those who are eligible are able to get a £140 rebate on energy bills this winter.

Energy fund schemes

Some providers offer an energy fund scheme – this can include both grants to help cover energy arrears, and (sometimes) Further Assistance Payments to contribute towards things like white goods, boiler repairs or funeral costs. Apply via these links: British Gas Energy Trust / EDF Energy Trust / E.on Energy Fund / Npower Energy Fund / Scottish Power Hardship Fund.

Also see the Cheap Gas & Electricity guide.

Check out the energy saving quick wins to help you save more money on your energy bills.

Water

The Water UKwebsite has info on all the water company schemes.