Energy Minister Ed Davey admitted that the uptake of the Green Deal scheme to date had been disappointing, but said he hoped new incentives would change that.
Amongst the changes are more manageable arrangements for private landlords looking to adopt the scheme, which will see tenants covering the expenses via savings achieved on their energy bills.
The Green Deal scheme is an initiative aimed at helping households become more energy efficient and provides loans to cover energy efficiency improvements.
Low uptake does not tell the whole story
Speaking at today’s Ecobuild Conference, Davey said: “The good news is that we have a lot of assessments to go on. But when it comes to converting green deal assessments into finance plans, the story so far has been, let’s face it, disappointing.”
“What we have learned is that the green deal assessment is a bigger part of the green deal than I think we had recognised,” he added.
At present close to 150,000 assessments have been carried out in the UK, as part of the Green Deal.
‘Consumers need all the help they can get to make their homes more energy efficient’
Director of Consumer Policy at uSwitch Ann Robinson said: “We welcome Ed Davey’s proposals today to simplify the Green Deal scheme and make it easier for consumers to take advantage of its benefits. Consumers need all the help they can get to make their homes more energy efficient and keep them warm.
“It is also good to see more encouragement for private landlords to use the scheme, with tenants covering the repayments through their energy bills – but only on the proviso that the tenants’ costs will never be greater than their energy bill savings.”
A less complex proposition
Robinson added that she pleased with the financial backing the initiative would receive: “There is also some good news about the financial incentives package being developed and we look forward to hearing more about this.
“The key point is that Green Deal will be less complex. It should be easier for consumers to engage with it and take advantage of it. If the new measures help people protect themselves against skyrocketing energy bills, they should be encouraged.”