Major Increase in Energy Efficiency Grants to Householders

Minister for Energy, Alex White T.D., today announced a boost in the level of grants available to householders who want to undertake energy efficiency improvements. The cash value of every grant available to householders under the Better Energy Homes Scheme has been increased by between 25-50%. In addition, a bonus payment has been introduced which will see householders receive bonus payments if they complete three or more energy efficiency improvements.

The new grant levels are effective immediately and will apply to everyone who has applied for a grant that has not yet been paid. The previous minimum grant threshold of €400 has been abolished and a bonus payment of €300 for householders who undertake three efficiency measures has been introduced, with an additional bonus payment of €100 available to householders who undertake four measures. The bonus payments are available to new applicants and to householders who have already availed of the scheme who wish to undertake further upgrades.

Major Increase in Energy Efficiency Grants to Householders

The changes in grant levels, effective from today

The Better Energy Homes Scheme provides grants to homeowners to undertake energy efficiency measures such as insulating walls or attics and installing new heating systems. Since the scheme was launched in 2009 more than 165,000 homes have undertaken energy efficiency upgrades with a total Government investment of €172m.

Under the revised scheme, a family in a semi-detached house could benefit from a grant payment of up to €4700 for external wall insulation, a boiler and heating control upgrade, and cavity and attic insulation. A couple in an apartment could receive €3400 towards internal wall insulation, a boiler and heating control upgrade and the installation of solar thermal heating.

Major Increase in Energy Efficiency Grants to Householders

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The Better Energy Warmer Homes scheme (BEWH), administered by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland, funds energy efficiency improvements in the homes of the elderly and vulnerable, making the homes more comfortable, healthier and more cost effective to run. The Better Energy Warmer Homes services are provided by a panel of SEAI appointed non-profit community based organisations (CBO’s) and a panel of SEAI appointed private contractors. The Installers are assigned to a household depending on their geographic location. CBO’s and contractors deliver the BEWH to the highest quality assurance standards. Inspections are carried out on a sample of homes completed to ensure the standards are maintained.

The scheme is available to non-Local Authority owner occupied homes constructed before 2006. The owner of the property has also to be in receipt of one of the following:

  • Fuel Allowance as part of the National Fuel Scheme
  • Job Seekers allowance for over six months and with children under 7 years of age
  • Family income support

The service involves the installation of standard energy efficiency measures appropriate to the eligible household subject to SEAI survey, budget allocation and available capacity. The service is provided at no cost to the household and the measures currently available under this scheme are:

  • Attic insulation.
  • Draught proofing.
  • Lagging jackets.
  • Low energy light bulbs.
  • Cavity wall insulation.
  • Energy advice.

Landlords can avail of grants from Better Energy Homes if they have tenants in, or at risk of, energy poverty.

The Better Energy Homes scheme provides assistance to homeowners to reduce energy use, costs and greenhouse gas emissions and improve the comfort levels within their home. It is a national scheme therefore all homeowners of dwelling built before 2006 may apply. Landlords and owners of multiple properties may also apply, however they must submit a separate application form for each property.  Grants are available for eligible applicants for under taking energy efficient  upgrades.

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Better Energy Homes Scheme – New Grant Amounts

The Better Energy Homes scheme temporarily closed for new applications following Budget 2012 and a subsequent announcement by the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources reopened for new homeowner applications on December 8th 2011.

A number of scheme revisions have been agreed and the two key changes to the scheme are:

  • Revised grant amounts for all wall insulation types and Building Energy Rating (BER)
  • Internal and external wall insulation grants will no longer be one single amount, but rather be based upon the house type.

Grants for attic insulation and all heating system upgrades including solar remain unchanged.

A summary of the new grant levels, and how they relate to house type, is shown below:

A Building Energy Rating (BER) is an integral part of all grant applications under the Better Energy Homes scheme, whereby homeowners must undertake a BER on their home after grant aided works have been completed. A homeowner is entitled to BER funding of €50 once per home. This funding will be applied to your grant application automatically provided you have never applied previously for BER funding. You will be informed during the online grant application process if BER funding is available for your home or as part of your Letter of Grant Offer if you have applied through the post. It is advisable that you apply for and undertake all planned grant aided works at the same time to minimise the costs of multiple BER assessments.

Please note the minimum grant amount for the first application must be €400. A BER grant, where applicable, does not count towards the €400 minimum.

Further information on the Better Energy Home Scheme Grants can be found at www.seai.ie