What is the Green Deal?
As the weather gets colder and the nights get shorter make sure you’re not wasting energy – think about insulation, and the new government scheme to help pay for it.
The Green Deal allows you to get energy efficiency improvements to your property without having to pay up front. You can pay for it by instalments on your electricity bill, for a period of up to 25 years. Paying through your bill is like a loan – but for your property, not the person. The payments are agreed at the start, and the loan stays with the property after the bill payer moves on.
The Green Deal is designed to ensure that you won’t pay back more than you are saving on your energy bill. This is called the Golden Rule. However, this is not a guarantee. The actual level of your savings will depend on how much energy you use to heat your property and the future cost of energy.
How to get a Green Deal
Stage 1: assessment
An on-site assessment of your property must be carried out by an authorised Green Deal assessor. They must assess the energy efficiency of the property and advise which approved Green Deal improvements would have the most significant impact on the energy efficiency of your property.
They must give you a Green Deal Advice Report which includes:
- an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) showing the energy use of a typical household of your type, plus suggestions for improvements and
- an Occupancy Assessment (OA) showing how your household uses energy, plus some recommendations for reducing your energy use and the savings you can expect from the improvements.
You may be charged for an assessment. The assessor must make clear what you’re likely to pay, before the assessment takes place.
Stage 2: obtaining finance
Once the assessment is complete, you can take the assessment to any authorised Green Deal Provider who will then provide you with a quote for a Green Deal plan.
The Provider will also estimate the likely savings on energy bills as a result of having the measures installed, and the likely period over which these savings will be made to ensure that the Green Deal plan meets the Golden Rule.
The Golden Rule means you shouldn’t have to pay back more than you are saving on your energy bill. However, this is not a guarantee. The actual level of your savings will depend on how much energy you use to heat your property and the future cost of energy.
If you decide to accept the quote, the Provider will draw up a Green Deal plan which forms the contract between you and the Provider. The contract sets out the energy efficiency improvements to be done, the repayments and the fixed interest rate.
Stage 3: installation
Once you’ve agreed to a Green Deal plan, the Green Deal Provider will arrange for an authorised Green Deal installer to come and carry out the work you have agreed to.
Stage 4: repayment
You can pay for it for it by instalments on your electricity bill.
If you agree to pay through your electricity bill you’ll be entering into a consumer credit agreement with the Green Deal Provider. You’ll be borrowing money under credit.
You may wish to consider whether this type of financial arrangement is right for you and your circumstances.
You might also want to have a look at the Salford City Council Energy Advice on http://www.salford.gov.uk/energyadvice.htm
For help from Salford Citizens Advice visit your local bureau in Eccles, Irlam and Cadishead, SalfordCity, Swinton, Walkden or at Salford Royal.
Telephone our advice line: 0844 826 9695 (if calling from a landline or if calling from a mobile 0300 456 2554).
For more details of our service visit our website at: www.salfordcab.org.uk