Kent County Council Flexible Energy Rules for Energy Company Obligation grants

Kent County Council Flexible Energy (LA Flex)

Kent County Council has a set of rules that will allow you to apply for ECO grants if you’re interested in installing insulation or upgrading your heating.

It allows residents who are considering investing in eco-friendly upgrades such as adding insulation and/or replacing old systems with new ones the opportunity to do so by applying for an Energy Company Obligation (ECO) grant from one of our local energy companies.

1. What is Local Authority Flexible Energy or LA Flex?

The Energy Company Obligation is a government mandate that forces gas and electricity suppliers to help provide funding for low-income households who are struggling in the cold but do not receive benefits. With LA Flex, these families can access grants through ECO funds as well as up insulation measures which reduce heat loss so they don’t have difficulty keeping their homes warm during the winter months- it’s been a source of tremendous relief!
 
The Kent County Council wants nothing more than to help you save money at home by providing assistance through grants. They start with covering insulation or boiler costs, but if this sounds like something up your alley then read on!

2. What grants are available?

The types of grants available to residents living in the Kent County Council area include:

3. Who is eligible for grants?

As a renter, homeowner or tenant and your income qualifies for funding then read more! The easiest way to see if you are eligible is to use our eligibility checker here.

eco scheme eligibility rules for pensioners

Eligibility

There are 6 ways to qualify for a grant:

1. Receiving a qualifying benefit
2. Receiving Child Benefit and meeting income rules
3. Income-based eligibility (for households that earn less than £31,000 per year)
4. Vulnerable eligibility
5. Health-related eligibility
6. Bespoke targeting

This route to eligibility applies where a member of the household receives or has received a 'qualifying benefit'. If the benefit isn't a current claim (for example for households where they have gone back to work after the pandemic) providing the benefit has been claimed at some point within the last 12 months, the household will still be eligible for a grant.

Qualifying benefits include:

- Child Tax Credit

- Employment & Support Allowance (Income Based) - Income Support

- Housing Benefit

- Jobseekers Allowance (Income Based)

- Pension Credit Guarantee Credit

- Pension Credit Savings Credit

- Universal Credit

- Working Tax Credit

Note if you receive any of the following benefits you could qualify later in the scheme (or through the ECO4 Flex routes). We advise anyone claiming the following benefits to register for updates so you are the first to know when these benefits are accepted.

- Armed Forces Independence Payment

- Attendance Allowance

- Carer's Allowance

- Constant Attendance Allowance

- Disability Living Allowance (DLA)

- Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit

- Personal Independence Payment (PIP)

- War Pensions Mobility Supplement

If you receive Child Benefit you could be eligible for the scheme but unlike the qualifying benefits above they would need to meet an additional income criteria.

The Child Benefit income criteria depends on the number of children in the household and also whether the claim is a single or joint claim.

The income limits are as follows:

Single parents

1 Child – £19,900
2 Children – £24,800
3 Children – £29,600
4+ Children – £34,500

Parents in a couple

1 Child – £27,500
2 Children – £32,300
3 Children – £37,200
4+ Children – £42,000

(figures updated to Ofgem’s Administration Consultation released on 13 June 2022)

If you are eligible through the Child Benefit route you should apply as soon as you can. The Government's Green Homes Grant excluded Child Benefit recipients so potentially this eligibility route could be removed later in the the scheme.

To be eligible through the income-based route your annual household income will need to be under £31,000. You will need to provide evidence such as bank statements and income information to confirm eligibility.

This is an ECO4 Flex route so it requires the applicants council to have published a Statement of Intent and to issue eligibility declarations.

Vulnerable people can access grants if they meet two of the following criteria (1 & 3 can’t be used together):

1. Lives in a Lower Super Output Area

2. Receives Council Tax Rebate (excluding for single person discounts)

3. Householder has a disability, mental health condition, is over 65, school children or under 16 and pregnant women.

4. Receives free school meals due to a low income

5. Supported by a Council scheme described in a Statement of Intent

6. Households referred by a Citizen’s advice as struggling to pay gas and electricity bills

7. Households in energy debt

A medical practitioner will need to complete a referral form to confirm eligibility.

This is an ECO4 Flex route so it requires the applicants council to have published a Statement of Intent and to issue eligibility declarations.

People with health conditions that are made worse by living in a cold home qualify.

These include:

- Cardiovascular diseases

- Immunosuppressed

- Mobility issues

- Respiratory conditions

A medical practitioner will need to complete a referral form to confirm eligibility.

This is an ECO4 Flex route so it requires the applicants council to have published a Statement of Intent and to issue eligibility declarations.

Installers can target specific groups of people living in fuel poverty. Installers will approach you if your property is eligible through this route.

Kent County Council

If you DON'T claim benefits, the criteria for identifying households in fuel poverty in Kent County Council are as follows:

Criteria for Kent County Council eligible households

1. Fuel Poverty 

See eligibility threshold in the table

 

2. Vulnerable to Cold

• Older people (aged over 60 and particularly those over 75)
• Young children (under 5)

• People with Respiratory conditions (e.g. Chronic obstructive pulmonary
disease (COPD) and childhood asthma)
• People with Cardiovascular conditions (e.g. ischaemic heart disease,
cerebrovascular disease)
• People with mental health conditions (e.g. schizophrenia, bipolar disorder)
• Pregnant women
• People with addictions (e.g. substance misusers)
• People who have attended hospital due to a fall
• People with dementia
• People with neurobiological and related conditions (e.g. fibromyalgia, ME)
• People with a terminal illness
• People with autoimmune & immune deficiency diseases (e.g. from cancer
treatment, HIV, MS)
• People with disabilities
• Haemoglobinopathies (sickle cell disease, thalassaemia)
• People with severe learning disabilities
• People who move in and out of homelessness
• Recent immigrants, asylum seekers and refugees (if living in private tenure) 

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5. How much could you get?

The amount of the grant you get can depend on a lot. The Ofgem rules place an emphasis on your heating, and they use existing or previous heaters to calculate their lifetime savings calculation which will give installers funding values for installing new boilers in homes where there is no current heating system installed already. This value could also be dependent upon what area you live in as well.

The grants are currently available as follows (subject to survey and meeting eligibility rules):

Download your EPC

We know that our customers are sometimes put off by the idea of installing heating and insulation, and it’s never easy to make a big investment in something. That’s why we’re here for you! We’ll help figure out what your options are before anything else happens with an absolutely free survey – so there isn’t any guesswork involved when going through this process.

Kent County Council flexible energy (LA Flex) rules are detailed in this Statement of Intent

A full list of all local authority flexible energy rules can be found on the gov.uk website

Apply for a grant

Check eligibility for grants

Fill in the short form to see if you are eligible for Government grants.