Posted on: 22 March 2021
Make your property greener with some of the government incentives
Making your buy-to-let rental property more environmentally friendly can be expensive, but is important to do to ensure that everyone is doing their part to help combat global warming and climate change.
We are taking a look at the Green Homes Grant to show you how it can make a difference to both your rental property and the environment.
The Green Homes Grant for property owners
What is the Green Homes Grant?
The Green Homes Grant is a grant that residential landlords can claim from the government to install fittings or applications that will make the house more environmentally friendly.
The scheme is not available to commercial property owners.
How much can be claimed
People who claim the Green Homes Grant can claim up to £5,000 worth of vouchers that can be used.
What can you use the vouchers for?
The vouchers can be used to install fittings or applications that will reduce energy usage, reduce carbon emissions and create better insulation. These can include the following:
- Insulation – Solid wall insulation, cavity wall insulation, underfloor insulation, loft insulation, flat roof insulation, pitched roof insulation, room in roof insulation or insulation in a park home. This is classed as a primary measure.
- Low carbon heat – Air source pump heat, ground source pump heat, solar thermal, biomass boiler or hybrid heat pumps. This is classed as a primary measure.
- Windows and doors – Draught proofing, double or triple glazing to replace single glazing, secondary glazing for single glazing or energy-efficient replacement doors. This is classed as a secondary measure.
- Heating controls and insulation – Hot water tank thermostat, hot water tank insulation or heating controls, such as appliance thermostats, smart heating controls, zone controls, intelligent delayed start thermostat or thermostatic radiator valves. This is classed as a secondary measure.
Secondary measures can only be completed with your voucher if vouchers for the primary measures have been redeemed and installed first.
What do the vouchers cover?
You can use the vouchers against the cost of labour, materials and VAT. Additional work can be covered under the vouchers if it is required for your new fitting or appliance.
Work must be completed by a Trust Mark registered installer who has signed up to be part of the scheme and cannot be carried out by yourself, a member of your immediate family or someone from your household.
The work will also need to meet PAS and MCS standards.
Applying for your vouchers
When applying for the Green Homes Grant vouchers, you will need to:
- Check if you’re eligible for the scheme.
- Check which improvements will be suitable for your home.
- Find a local installer.
- Apply for the grant.
You will need to provide a quote from an installer to be able to apply for the grant, so it is recommended that you find at least three quotes to ensure you’re getting the best price. The quote can be rejected by the scheme administrator if they believe that the quote provided is too high.
There is a time limit on this grant, in that the voucher must be redeemed, with improvements completed by 31st March 2022.
Starting work on the project
Work cannot be started on any property improvements until the voucher has been redeemed. If the work has started before the voucher is redeemed then you won’t be able to claim.
You will receive a voucher for each item that you have claimed in your application.
You can only use the voucher for what you have applied for, at the property that you are having the measure installed, and it can only be used by the person whose name is on the voucher. The voucher is non-transferrable.
Your voucher will be valid for three months once you have claimed it, or until 31st March 2022, whichever date is sooner. The scheme is set to end on the 31st March 2022.
Once work has finished…
When the improvement work on your rental property has been completed, your installer will:
- Give you a dated invoice for each measure installed.
- Provide certification for energy efficiency measures.
- Issue a guarantee document.
- Present an MCS certificate with the relevant manufacturer instructions.
- Provide you with a biomass supplier list if your installation requires biomass for power.
You will then need to redeem your voucher before it expires. For this, you will need:
- The reference number you received when you first applied for the grant.
- The postcode of your property where measures were installed.
- The email address you used when applying for the grant.
- Your voucher number.
- The total cost of the completed measure (one cost per measure), including VAT where applicable
- A digital copy of your invoice. One per measure installed.
You should also confirm that:
- The installation was satisfactory.
- You have received the correct certification from the installer.
- You have paid your cost to the installer.
Following these steps, the grant will be paid directly to the installer.
For more information about the Green Homes Grant, visit the government website.
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