Warm Homes Fund
1. What is the Warm Homes Fund?
National Grid and Community Interest Company, Affordable Warmth Solution (AWS) have launched a £150m Warm Homes Fund (WHF) designed to support local authorities, to address some of the issues affecting fuel poor households. The Suffolk Councils have been successful in being awarded funding for the next three years, for an ambitious heating project which will provide up to £4.3M of improvements.
The Warm Homes Fund will be run over 3-years and will provide capital funding for the installation of affordable heating solutions in fuel poor households who do not currently use mains gas as their primary heating fuel. Cold homes are not just uncomfortable to live in they can have a negative effect on health. In Suffolk there are still a large number of houses that do not have a central heating system with a boiler and radiators.
A recent client said:
'Many thank yous for all your help and enabling me to be warm this winter and in the future - without which I don't know what I would have done'
2. What will this fund deliver?
Over 500 first time central heating systems to Suffolk households over the next three years.
3. What type of systems will be installed?
For most households the system installed will be a boiler and radiators powered either by oil or mains gas if you live close to a gas main and can be connected easily. A few properties may be suitable for an electrically operated air source heat pump.
This funding allows for radiators to be installed in your 'habitable rooms' e.g. your living room/bedrooms etc.
4. Can any type of household benefit from this fund?
Only households which are privately owned or privately rented can benefit from this fund (i.e. not social housing or housing association properties)
5. What are the eligibility criteria for this fund?
- Your house must not already have an existing central heating system (boiler and radiators)
- You need to be on a low income to qualify. To discuss this please ring Warm Homes Healthy People service on 03456 037 686 (local rate). You will be eligible if you meet one of the 'Criteria for identifying fuel poverty' in Suffolk’s Flexible Eligibility Statement of Intent. (a statement that sets out how Suffolk households in fuel poverty can be eligible for funding support under Energy Company Obligation Flexible Eligibility scheme).
- You must privately own or privately rent your house.
- If you are being considered for a gas central heating system and you need a mains gas connection you will need to meet the criteria for the AWS Fuel Poverty Network Extension Scheme.
6. How does the funding work?
In most circumstances the works will be carried out at no charge to you being funded by the Warm Homes Fund and Energy Company Obligation funding (a government backed energy efficiency scheme). In some cases this funding may need to be topped up by Local Authority Renovation Grants, contributions from private landlords or other sources of funding. This will be determined as part of the assessment process. Your enquiry will be dealt with by staff from the Suffolk Warm Homes Healthy People Service (WHHP), who are based at Suffolk Coastal District Council Offices but deal with enquiries across Suffolk. WHHP is part of the Suffolk Energy Action campaign. You may see the 3 following logos all of which are linked to the work being done in Suffolk to promote Energy Efficiency and healthy homes.
7. Are there any other benefits under this scheme?
Yes, your house will also be assessed for cavity wall and loft insulation. Funding may also be available to carry out these works.
The Suffolk Community Foundation is running the 'Surviving Winter Appeal' and you may also be able to benefit from a payment towards your fuel bills if you meet their criteria. They target people over the age of 63 years. A similar scheme is run by WHHP for younger households.
8. Which companies are installing these systems?
We have two companies who are installing the central heating systems for us. Aaron Services is installing systems in the Suffolk Coastal District Council, Ipswich Borough Council and Babergh District Council areas. Aran Services Ltd is installing central heating systems in the Waveney District Council, Mid Suffolk District Council, Forest Heath District Council and St Edmundsbury Borough Council areas.
Aran Services Ltd will be installing all the cavity wall and loft insulations across the whole of Suffolk.
9. How does the process work?
- You need to either complete the online enquiry form, ring Suffolk's Warm Homes Healthy People on 03456 037 686 (local rate) or email them at email@example.com quoting the 'Warm Homes Fund'.
- You will then be contacted by Suffolk's Warm Homes Healthy People (WHHP) who will carry out some initial eligibility checks with you. They will then arrange a WHHP visit with you to survey your home and verify your eligibility.
- Next you will be contacted by the installer who will arrange a visit to your property to carry out a technical survey for the first time central heating system and possible insulation works. The installer will then be able to quote for the works. The installer also needs to carry out an energy performance rating for your property as required for the funding. This may be possible during this visit or a separate visit maybe required.
- If works are to go ahead the installer will then arrange an installation date with you (where it is an oil installation two install visits will be required with one for the oil tank install and one for the central heating system install). The installer will need to carry out a post installation energy performance rating of your property as required for the funding. This may be possible to do when they carry out the installation or a separate visit may be required after the install.
- The installer will then arrange a final visit with you to commission the works.
- In some cases a quality and or technical monitoring visit may be carried out at a later date.
(Please note that if you are having insulation measures installed as well as a first time central heating system more visits will be required as heating and insulation works require separate visits for technical surveying and installing. If this is the case you may be contacted by both Aran Services and Aaron Services as Aran Services carry out the insulation works for the whole of the county but Aran Services and Aaron Services both carry out heating works in different areas of the county). In addition we are in a period of transition between funding streams and this may add some delay to an installation).
10. Who can I contact if I am interested in this scheme?