More than half of UK homeowners are planning to apply for the government’s new Green Energy Grant, research suggests.
The grant, which was announced by Chancellor Rishi Sunak in July’s budget and will be available from September, will cover at least two thirds of the cost of energy-saving home improvements.
The average UK household can apply for up to £5,000 ($6,396), while the poorest households can claim as much as £10,000.
So far, 51% of homeowners are planning to apply for the scheme, while another 26% are seriously considering it, according to a MoneySuperMarket survey of 2,000 people.
The scheme could save Brits up to £300 a year on bills, Sunak said in his announcement speech.
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It is part of a wider “green” recovery plan that will also see £1bn go towards making public buildings, such as schools and hospitals, more energy-efficient.
“There are several measures households can undertake to make their homes more energy efficient — from loft, wall and floor insulation, to adding double-glazed windows, among other things,” said Stephen Murray, energy expert at MoneySuperMarket.
But while it’s “encouraging” to see so many people “keen” to take advantage of the grant, switching suppliers remains the best way to save money on bills, Murray advised.
He said: “If you haven’t switched your energy supplier in the last 12 months, or have slipped onto a standard or default tariff, by far the most effective thing you can do to bring down the cost of your energy bills is switch to a cheaper supplier.
“It is easy to switch online and only takes a few minutes with your supplier taking care of the switching process. Our data shows customers can save an average of £290 by switching to a better deal.”
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The price comparison website cited deals from Eon (EOAN.DE) and British Gas as some of the best currently on the market.
Eon’s 100% renewable, duel fuel and electric tariff costs £851 based on average usage — £276 cheaper than the price cap.
Meanwhile, British Gas’s duel fuel tariff costs £855 based on average usage — £272 cheaper than the price cap. The deal, which is exclusive to new customers via price comparison websites, includes free 12-month boiler and controls, plumbing, drains and electrical cover.