Green Deal is a UK scheme that was intended to get households moving quickly on a green home overhaul. Home owners have been reluctant and at times confused about how to use green technologies to reduce their energy bills. In order to push things along, the government has now structured a limited time offer with cashback returned for approved Green Deal home improvements commenced soon.
The hope is that the home owners will take the leap on to the green bandwagon if they know that the cost of improvements can be repaid over many years and that there is a cashback offer that pays in under a month following completion.
The Cashback program can be applied for once a home owner has followed a couple of steps first. They will need to make a booking for an inspection with a Green Deal assessor who will inspect the property for what green improvements will be economic to install. This report is then provided to a Green Deal provider who ultimately will provide the loan to pay for the improvements. The provider will send out their Green Deal plan which will cover all the agreed improvements, the quote for the costs of the improvements, the interest rate on the loan, early repayment penalities and other details about the financing.
Once this contract is signed, the home owner can then apply to the Green Deal Scheme for a cashback voucher. This voucher has an expiry date for when the Green Deal improvements must be completed in order to qualify for a cashback. The first £40 million of the total of £125 million will be paid at a higher cashback rate than the remainder of the cashback funds. This is to encourage early sign-ups. It is entirely possible that cashback payments could top £1,000 if a full range of improvements are given the go ahead, but payments will decline as government-supplied cashback funds dwindle.
With families on a low income, it may be possible to seek assistance with paying for Green Deal from the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) program. This has been set-up by the largest energy companies in the UK with over a billion dollars of funding available. It is intended to provide for Green Deal home improvements for home owners who are unlikely to take up the Green Deal because they feel they can never afford it. Homes that are more difficult improvement projects can also seek support from the ECO for the added costs involved.
If accepted by the ECO program, it is unlikely that participation in the Cashback scheme will also be permitted, especially if the home owner has not paid for any of the improvements themselves.
Green Deal is a good scheme for owners of older homes that are badly in need of improvement. The possible improvements run the gamut from improved insulation to renewable energy, low-energy light bulbs to biomass boilers. An assessor can run through all the possible improvements and provide guidance as to the current level of energy efficiency is for the home and what it could be if their recommendations are followed.