Many households across the UK are struggling with rising energy bills and the cost of living crisis. To help alleviate this burden, the government has announced an expansion of its existing support for energy-efficiency home improvements. This scheme aims to help those most in need better insulate their homes and install renewable heating systems, reducing energy usage and bills.
The announcement made by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy builds upon the existing Home Upgrade Grant programme. Under the expanded scheme, 89,000 lower-income households in England and Wales will receive vouchers worth up to £10,000 towards installing improvements like insulation, double glazing, and heat pumps. To qualify, households must have an income of £30,000 or less.
Making homes more energy efficient is a key part of the government’s strategy to help families manage costs while also working towards net zero emissions targets. Properly insulating homes can reduce heating bills by hundreds of pounds per year. Switching to renewable heat sources like heat pumps also lowers reliance on expensive fossil fuels. Support will be focused on those most likely to benefit, including those living in the least energy-efficient homes.
The announcement has been welcomed by consumer champions like Martin Lewis as a positive step in supporting those struggling most with energy costs. Lewis stated the grants could make a real difference in cutting bills for low-income families. Others cautioned that more significant government intervention is still needed for those facing the squeeze in living standards.
With the energy price guarantee set to rise in April 2023, and the cost of living crisis expected to continue biting, helping households improve efficiency remains a priority. This scheme aims to provide concrete financial support where it is most needed. The government hopes it will reduce costs for families while also contributing to climate goals.