Pensioner checking eligibility for eco grants

Do pensioners qualify for boiler, heating and insulation grants?

Many pensioners find themselves struggling with the cost of living, and yet they are often overlooked when it comes to financial assistance. In fact, many pensioners are missing out on free energy saving grants and many don’t know that they may qualify for the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) Scheme! In this blog post we’ll explore what you need to qualify for a free energy saving grant and how to apply.

1. Do pensioners qualify for free energy saving grants?

This is a question people who are retired should ask themselves. Many pensioners find themselves struggling to make ends meet on their pensions alone. In fact, the average UK state retirement age has been increasing steadily over the years. Energy costs are rising and especially when pensioners are spending more time at home, these costs can be difficult to manage.
 
So do pensioners qualify for free energy saving grants? Yes they do! Pensioners, whether they are a home owner or a renter, are eligible for home improvement grants through government-backed, funded scheme called the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) scheme. The scheme includes grants for home insulation such as loft, underfloor or wall insulation. It also provides grants for repairing, replacing or installing energy-efficient heating.
 
The scheme is designed to cut energy bills for the lowest income homes in England, Scotland and Wales through upgrading heating systems or through the installation of insulation. It also reduces carbon emissions which helps tackle climate change too!

The types of grants available to pensioners include:

For more information on the different types of grants, see our page on the energy company obligation scheme. Our website also has lots of other useful advice regarding home improvement and saving money on your bills and reducing carbon emissions.
 

2. How do you qualify for free energy saving measures as a pensioner?

Home owners and private or social housing tenants qualify for these grants. You will need to live in a home that is in need of energy saving improvements like a boiler upgrade or loft insulation. 
 
Additionally, you (or a member of your household) will need to either receive benefits or meet income and eligibility rules set by your local authority. 
eco scheme eligibility rules for pensioners

If you receive any of the following benefits you will be eligible for the ECO scheme, regardless of household income and the assets that you own:

Child Benefit Eligibility Criteria ECO scheme

If you receive Child Benefit and it is the only benefit you receive, your annual household income must not exceed the income limits below.

Single Person Child Benefit Income Thresholds

Number of childrenMaximum income
1£18,500
2£23,000
3£27,500
4+£32,000
The table shows the income limits for eligibility for the Energy Company Obligation Scheme for a single person. Income from all sources must not exceed the threshold detailed in the table.

Couple Child Benefit Income Thresholds

Number of childrenMaximum income
1£25,500
2£30,000
3£34,500
4+£39,000
The table shows the income limits for eligibility for the Energy Company Obligation Scheme for couples. Income from all sources must not exceed the threshold detailed in the table.

The Child Benefit income requirements for eligibility for the Energy Company Obligation can be found on the Ofgem site.

LA Flex Council Rules for ECO Scheme
When calculating your household income you should include all income such as your state pension, pension income, state benefits, guarantee credit, pension credit or savings credit but you don’t need to include other grants such as the winter fuel payment or cold weather payment.
 
Please bear in mind that the rules that apply where you don’t claim benefits are not rigid. They are set by the local authority as part of their flexible energy rules, sometimes referred to as LA Flex.
 
So if you don’t claim benefits but if your household has an income of less than £25,000 a year, you might qualify for grants. You can use the eligibility checker to find out.
 
Whether you need a new boiler, to upgrade your electric room heaters or electric storage heaters, insulation or draught proofing, there will hopefully be something to suit your needs.
Lookup your EPC Rating

If you don’t know what rating your property has:

The EPC for your property will contain:

3. What grants are available to pensioners?

There are many grants for pensioners. They depend on what you have in your home now and what is needed to make your home more efficient and reduce your energy bills.
First Time Central Heating Grant

To be eligible for the central heating grant the heating at your property would need to be one of the following:

* The scheme rules place an emphasis on existing heating so if this is the main heating at your property you might have to pay towards the installation, but it is still likely to be subsidised.

First time central heating grants are available in areas both with, and without gas. If your property doesn’t have a gas line or gas meter, there are funding schemes that will pay for that and we can help you apply for the funded gas line. If there isn’t gas in your area, central heating can still be installed at your property; however rather than being connected to mains gas, the heating system will be connected to a tank, such as a calor gas tank, that will need to be refilled every so often.

To be eligible for a storage heater grant the heating at your property would need to be one of the following:

The scheme rules place an emphasis on existing heating so if this is the main heating at your property you might have to pay towards the installation but it is still likely to be subsidised.

To be eligible for a boiler grant your existing needs to be one of the following:

The scheme rules place an emphasis on existing heating and rarely are boilers free. If your existing heating is a back boiler you will need to pay significant contributions towards the cost of the back boiler conversion.

To be eligible for a cavity wall insulation grant your existing needs to be one of the following:

To be eligible for an internal wall insulation grant your existing heating needs to be one of the following:

The scheme rules place an emphasis on existing heating. Properties with electric or no heating can be fully-funded.

To be eligible for a boiler grant your existing needs to be one of the following:

The scheme rules place an emphasis on existing heating. There is funding for loft insulation for all electric heated properties. In some cases gas and other types of heated properties can get loft insulation.

To be eligible for a roof or room in roof insulation grant your existing heating. needs to be one of the following:

* The scheme rules place an emphasis on existing heating. There is funding for roof insulation for all electric heated properties. In some cases gas and other types of heated properties can get roof insulation.

To be eligible for underfloor insulation:

The scheme rules place an emphasis on existing heating. Electric heated properties receive the highest funding for underfloor insulation. If your property is heated by a mains gas boiler or gas room heaters underfloor insulation is usually on funded when installed alongside a boiler (sometimes called a dual measure).

These grants are available to home owners, private renters and social housing tenants. Landlords can benefit from them too, but the tenant needs to apply for the grant and meet the income rules or receive the benefits. The exception is boiler grants, as boiler grants are only available to pensioners who own their home.
 

3. How much money could pensioners save by upgrading heating systems or by installing insulation?

A lot of pensioners are suffering in cold homes around the UK because they can’t afford to upgrade their heating systems or install insulation. These grants are available for these upgrades, but not everyone knows how much it costs and what grants might be available.
 
It depends on a number of factors including:
 
– the size of the property
– the construction of the property
– existing heating at the property
– insulation at the property
 
When you submit your application for a grant you’ll be given a rough estimate of savings that can be achieved. You can also check the EPC for your property for average energy savings estimates. Installers are often very knowledgeable on what the impact of upgrades will be.

4. How much money could pensioners get if they apply for a grant?

The amount of money you could get depends on a few factors:
 
* The size of your property
* How well insulated it is
* Whether you have any heating already installed and if you do, what type of heating there is at the property.
 
The best way to find out how much you could get is to see if you qualify. If you do, you can submit your application. When submitting an application for a grant, the installer will assess the property and give you an indication of what grants you could get and what they would cost with, and without, the grant. Installers will offer you a free no obligation on site survey to assess the options and they should explain them to you fully. In some cases installers are carrying out virtual surveys. If you’d prefer that option be sure to mention it to the installer when you apply.

5. Why is it important to take advantage of these grants before they expire?

It’s important to take advantage of these grants as soon as you can as they won’t be around forever. If you miss the deadline, or if the rules change, there is no guarantee that you will get another opportunity to apply for them.
 
– The grant scheme is being administered by Ofgem on behalf of the government and has been designed to improve energy efficiency of homes in the UK and reduce carbon emissions.
 
– The scheme is due to run until 31 March 2022 but the funding rules can change at any time.
 
– There are no restrictions on the number of grants that you can apply for, or how many times your home qualifies, but you can’t apply for the same measure twice. 
 
– The application process is really easy and takes just a few minutes to see if you meet the eligibility criteria for these government grants. 

Don’t wait to apply for these grants as the rules can change at any time. There is currently over £1 billion up for grabs and, if you qualify, you could be eligible for thousands of pounds of free home improvements.

The money you save by upgrading your heating system or installing insulation could make all the difference in paying off that new appliance or making sure you have enough on hand when winter comes around again – so don’t wait any longer. See if you qualify today!

ELIGIBILITY

Check eligibility

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