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Energy Company Obligation scheme (ECO4)

The Energy Company Obligation (ECO) is a government initiative aimed at improving energy efficiency in homes across Great Britain. Launched in 2013, the scheme has undergone several updates, with the latest being ECO4, running from 2022 to 2026. This guide aims to help you understand whether you’re eligible, the benefits you can reap, and the application process.

  1. The Scheme’s Purpose: ECO4 is designed to reduce heating costs and improve energy efficiency in domestic settings, specifically targeting low-income and vulnerable households. By upgrading homes to be more energy-efficient, the scheme aids in reducing carbon emissions and fighting fuel poverty.
  2. Duration and Budget: The ECO4 scheme has been extended to run until March 2026, with an increased budget of approximately £1 billion annually, ensuring more households can benefit from the initiative.
  3. Eligibility Criteria: To qualify for ECO4, households must meet specific criteria, often related to income and existing home energy efficiency levels. Key factors include the household’s EPC rating and whether the home has been previously fitted with central heating.
  4. Benefits Offered: Eligible households can receive various energy-saving improvements, such as boiler upgrades or insulation, leading to reduced energy bills and a more comfortable living environment.

 

Are You Eligible?

Criteria:

Is you or is someone in your household receiving certain benefits*, such as Income Support, Universal Credit, or Child Benefit?
If so, you may be eligible. Income caps do apply, and are adjusted to 2022 figures, to ensure support reaches those in need

Type of claimant
Single £19,900£24,800£29,600£34,500
Couple £27,500£32,300£37,200£42,000
  • EPC Rating – Your property’s energy performance is an important factor. Homes with EPC ratings of D, E, F, or G are typically prioritised to receive improvements under ECO4.
  • Heating and Insulation Needs – Priority is given to homes needing significant upgrades, such as non-condensing to condensing boiler replacements or first-time central heating installations.

*Income based Jobseekers allowance, Income related Employment & Support Allowance, Pension Credit Guarantee Credit, Working Tax Credit, Child Tax Credits, Housing Benefit, Pension Credit Savings Credit.Process and Application:

  1. Check Eligibility – Review the qualifying criteria, such as your household income, benefits received, and your home’s EPC rating.
  2. Find a Supplier –Contact energy suppliers participating in the ECO4 scheme. Even if your energy supplier isn’t part of the scheme, any obligated supplier can potentially assist.
  3. Assessment – The supplier will assess your home’s eligibility, including energy needs and potential improvements.
  4. Installation: If approved, the energy-saving measures will be installed, often with minimal cost to the homeowner.

 

Innovation and Support Under ECO4

Innovation Measures:

ECO4 introduces innovative measures (IMs), aiming to encourage advancements in energy efficiency. These include uplifts for products demonstrating significant improvements, thus fostering industry innovation and providing better options for consumers.

Additional Support:

The scheme focuses on comprehensive support, ensuring that the least energy-efficient homes, typically occupied by low-income families, receive necessary upgrades. This aligns with the broader Sustainable Warmth Strategy, aiming for long-term environmental and economic benefits.

The ECO4 scheme is designed to help improve energy efficiency and help in reducing fuel poverty in regions such as the Midlands and across Great Britain. By understanding the eligibility criteria and application process, households can take significant steps towards a warmer, more energy-efficient home. If you believe you may qualify, reaching out to [?an obligated energy supplier?] can be the first step towards potential transformative improvements for your home and wellbeing.

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