There’s a lot of government talk about making homes more energy-efficient with the help of loft insulation grants in Scotland. But is it all just hot air?
One of the most effective methods to increase your homes energy efficiency is to ensure good insulation. And if you can have the work done for a heavily discounted or completely subsidised cost, even better!
There have been a number of schemes over the years. All designed to assist householders in reducing their heating costs by making their home more ‘green’. For example, there was the green deal from 2012 to 2015. And the more recent government scheme was soon abandoned, blaming a high administrative burden for the poor take-up.
Our sense is that there is much more support for energy-saving measures on the horizon. However – what’s available for loft insulation grants in Scotland right now?
The first port of call should be Home Energy Scotland.
At the time of publishing this article, HES’s online Funding Finder returned the following funding options:
Home Energy Efficiency Programmes for Scotland (HEEPS)
HEEPS is the Scottish Government’s initiative for tackling fuel poverty and increasing energy efficiency in homes. It comprises a cluster of loft insulation grants in Scotland including:
- Energy Efficient Scotland: Warmer Homes Scotland
- Home Energy Scotland (HES) Grant & Loan
- Private Rented Sector Landlord Loan
- Area Based Schemes
You can read the Scottish Government’s full HEEPS policy here.
Energy Efficient Scotland: Warmer Homes Scotland
The Warmer Homes Scotland programme is a Scottish Government scheme. It provides energy-saving home improvements, including loft insulation, to eligible households who are struggling to keep warm or with the cost of their energy bills; making homes warmer, more comfortable and more affordable to heat.
It’s open to homeowners and private-sector tenants, provided you have lived in your property for at least 6 months. You can find out if you’re eligible using Warmer Homes Scotland’s self-assessment tool.
The government will usually cover all costs (not including work that’s already been carried out). But certain (more expensive) cases require a customer contribution. The good news is that an interest-free loan is available to meet the cost of the extra customer contribution.
All home improvements funded by Warmer Homes Scotland must delivered by Warmworks-approved installers. You can apply using the self-assessment tool (see above) or by calling them on 0808 808 2282.
The process is as follows:
- HES passes your application to Warmworks
- Warmworks arranges an in-home survey with you
- The scope of work is agreed
- Their approved sub-contractor carries out the work
- An independent inspection of the work done is completed
- A customer satisfaction survey is provided for your feedback
Home Energy Scotland (HES) Grant & Loan
If you don’t qualify for the Warmer Homes Scheme, you may still be able to receive a grant and/or interest-free loft insulation loan funding via The Home Energy Scotland Grant and Loan scheme.
For loft insulation, you can receive up to £2,000 (£1,500 grant plus £500 optional loan). Even better, you can choose your own installer and don’t need to use Warmworks. For more details, see HES’ guide on choosing the right installer.
Find out more: Home Energy Scotland Grant & Loan.
Private Rented Sector Landlord Loan
If you’re a private landlord, you could apply for up to £100,000 if you have fewer than 5 properties. Or for up £250,000 if you have 6 or more. There’s a 1.5% fee (max. £250) and no interest to pay if you have up to 5 properties. 6 or more and you’ll pay interest at 3.5% APR.
There is a cap on the maximum loan amount for each type of energy improvement though. For loft insulation or cavity wall insulation, it’s only £1,000 per property. For many properties, topping up the insulation is enough. But for mid- to large-sized homes with little or no insulation, this might not be sufficient.
Find out more: HES Private Rented Sector Landlord Loan
HEEPS: Area-Based Schemes
Local Authorities have been given control over an amount of funding for loft insulation grants in Scotland.
The available advice online is a little unclear, with councils seeming to require registration of interest in certain locations. However, all seem to refer back to HES as your first port of call.
Energy Company Obligation
The Energy Company Obligation (ECO) is a UK Government scheme requiring energy suppliers to help households with energy efficiency measures. The latest policy, ECO4, is now available and applies to measures completed from April 2022 to March 2026.
Under this scheme, energy suppliers have to install a package of energy-saving measures in the homes of those on low income or facing fuel poverty. The energy companies determine which measures they install, how much funding they provide and the installers that do the work.
See which suppliers are offering ECO on Which? Energy Company Obligation (ECO). You can also check your eligibility by visiting Home Energy Scotland. (In England & Wales fill out this questionnaire on Simple Energy Advice).
Green Homes Grant Scheme (closed March 2021)
Not to be confused with the Green Deal, the Green Homes Grant Scheme ran from September 2020. It was closed in March 2021. The Federation of Master Builders (FMB) issued a press release, emphasising why they thought this was the wrong decision. Read here about why scrapping the Green Homes Grant Scheme requires a long-term strategy.
Thinking about insulating your loft? Our free loft surveys give you a comprehensive assessment of your existing insulation and how you can improve it.