The Green Homes Grant and where it went wrong
The Green Homes Grant looked good on paper, but it was full of holes. Read on to find out more.
Climate change is making itself felt throughout the world. We all have to play a part in shaping the future of our planet, and one of the ways we can take positive steps towards keeping a rise in temperatures a bay is by saving energy in our homes. Not only does investing in energy saving, home-improvements help to lower our emissions, but it also helps to lower our bills, which is definitely a win-win situation.
Unfortunately, a green home, however, is an expensive endeavour. Most of us can’t afford to make the improvements to our homes that will truly make an effective difference. We could take out a loan from a financial institution, but with high-interest rates and large monthly repayment, we won’t see any of those ‘lower bills’ savings for a very long time. We could also try and find an online casino real money jackpot, but let’s face it, the odds of winning one are not in our favour.
Green Home Jackpot
But funnily enough, when the UK government launched the Green Homes Grant, it did feel a bit like a jackpot win. The Green Homes Grant was a scheme that aimed to help homeowners make the necessary improvements to their homes to increase energy efficiency. 600,000 homes were meant to be improved by this scheme, with homeowners receiving vouchers worth up to £5,000 each to put towards primary measure improvements. Primary measures refer to insulation and low carbon heating, such as solid wall insulation, flat roof insulation, an air source heat pump, or a biomass boiler.
Beset with Issues
The Green Homes Grant was launched in September 2020, and it was meant to be available to the public until March 2022. Unfortunately, in March 2021 the scheme was scrapped. Only 10% of the estimated 600,000 homes actually ended up benefiting from the scheme. The problem, it seems, is that the whole concept of the Green Homes Grant was rushed into being. The design of the scheme simply did not take into account the number of tradespeople that would be needed to do the works in order to meet the strict deadlines imposed by the scheme.
A homeowner, for example, would need to have the works completed within three months from the date that the voucher was issued. The works could only be carried out by tradespeople that are registered with TrustMark or the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS). This meant that many skilled and reputable tradespeople were unable to take part in the scheme. There were also plenty of reports concerning the application process, delays in receiving vouchers, and tradespeople being made to wait over 40 days for payments.
There is talk that the scheme will be relaunched with the October spending review. Conscientious homeowners and landlords, as well as environmentalists are certainly eager to see a much stronger initiative take the place of the Green Homes. The hope is that the government will go with a more long-term solution, such as the National Retrofit Strategy, which would see up to 28 million UK homes get a green makeover. A long-term strategy would encourage tradespeople to foot the expenses related to the extra accreditation needed to be eligible to do the works, and to employ the extra staff needed to meet demands.
A long-term strategy would also encourage more people to get involved in making the energy efficient changes to their home that are needed to reduce emissions. There are still more people than we realise who are on the fence when it comes to climate change, people who were simply not willing to rush into a scheme where they would still be expected to foot one-third of the bill. People who easily get put off by a difficult application process, or convoluted requirements. Let’s home that whatever comes next actually makes it easy for people to step up and be the change.
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