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What's this Green Deal thing then?

We are all trying to be energy efficient and keep our homes warm, dry and draft free. Most of us will have double or triple glazing, insulation in our lofts and wall cavities, temperature control systems on the heating and put lights out when we leave the room. There are other things you might have done or consider doing such as having solar panels fitted. You may have seen in the news about the government's Green Deal home improvement scheme and wondered what it is all about. Here is a little bit of information to help you.

After years of planning and talking, the Green Deal, the government's flagship energy-saving scheme, is now up and running.

The aim of the programme is to make our homes warmer and cheaper to run, without people having to shell out large sums of money upfront.


How does it work?

It's a scheme that allows people to pay for home improvements over time, through their electricity bill. The aim is that the cost of the work will be covered by the savings you'll make as a result of having the measures installed – though this is not guaranteed. And there is government cashback on offer.


What sort of home improvements?

Energy-saving ones. Around 45 different improvements are currently eligible for the Green Deal – they include double and triple glazing, a new boiler, cavity wall insulation, solid wall insulation, floor insulation, draught-proofing, a new front door, new or replacement storage heaters, and loft and hot water tank insulation. Wind turbines and solar panels could also be eligible, suggests the Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC).


Sounds intriguing – do I have to hand over any money upfront?

Maybe, maybe not. The government previously said householders would be able to have the work done "at no upfront cost". However, you have to have an assessment done first, and these will typically cost £75-£120. British Gas is charging £99, for example. However, the cost may well be waived if you use that company to do the work. We found one firm, Mark Group, which said it would offer assessments free of charge, and there will probably be others. click here to continue reading

Further reading

Green Deal quick guides

How to save with the Green Deal scheme

How the Green Deal works

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