How the scheme works and how you can qualify
Among the many UK government programmes in place today, there is one that requires energy suppliers to assist British consumers in making their homes more energy efficient: the Energy Companies Obligation, or ECO programme.
What you need to know about the government’s ECO programme
The Energy Companies Obligation programme was launched in January of 2013 with the aim of reducing the country’s consumption of energy. Another objective of the programme is to help individuals who are finding it difficult to pay for the energy they need. The programme works in conjunction with another government programme, the Green Deal initiative, so consumers can receive funding and support for the energy efficient improvements they make in their homes.
The three obligations under the Energy Companies Obligation programme:
The Carbon Saving Community, Affordable Warmth, and Carbon Saving Obligations
Energy companies are obliged to help British consumers so they can take measures in improving their home’s insulation and heating through the installation of energy efficient boilers and cavity wall, external wall, or loft insulation.
Consumers who are interested in applying for the ECO programme can check if they are eligible through energy specialists like npower.
Once a consumer has checked their eligibility and has found that they are eligible for the ECO programme, their property will be visited by a Home Energy Assessor who will take measurements of their home’s existing energy efficiency. One point to remember is that this assessment is entirely free as well as being objectively carried out according to industry standards. After making the assessment, the assessor will then discuss with the consumer what energy saving enhancements they can make, as well as how much savings they can expect with each enhancement.
What to expect from the assessor
In order to have a seamless inspection, it would be better for you to prepare for the assessor’s visit in advance. For instance, the assessor would need to see certain documents as proof if you are in the process of receiving other benefits, such as a benefit entitlement letter or a Tax Credit award notice. Whilst they are in your property, the assessor will need to have full access to every room in your home, including the loft. The assessor will take pictures of your home so they can easily identify which areas can benefit from energy efficient improvements, and they will also let you know about any permission you may need to acquire before any improvements can be done.
What to expect from the energy supplier
When it has been determined that you qualify for the ECO programme, the energy supplier will directly provide you with assistance. This comes in the form of an energy plan for whatever improvements need to be installed. The energy plan drawn up by the supplier will contain detailed information on the enhancements you will have, which you will then sign in order to proceed with the improvements.
The focus of the ECO programme is to provide property owners with the assistance and support they need so that they can benefit from a more energy efficient home. Speak to your energy provider to learn more about how you too can benefit from the ECO scheme.
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