Home energy help for residents
Solar Together Cheshire and Warrington
Residential housing makes up a substantial proportion of the borough’s greenhouse gas emissions. One way to help reduce this is to use renewable energy sources at home.
As part of our work to help the borough to become carbon neutral by 2045, we are working with neighbouring local authorities Cheshire East and Warrington Borough Council together with independent experts iChoosr Ltd, to offer residents the opportunity to benefit from Solar Together Cheshire and Warrington.
This scheme is a first for the area and provides residents with the opportunity to join a group-buying scheme which will offer high-quality solar photovoltaic (PV) panels and battery storage, installed by pre-vetted companies at a competitive price.
If you already have solar panels, you can register your interest for battery storage. This helps get more from the renewable energy they currently generate, as well as increase their independence from the grid.
How does the Solar Together Cheshire and Warrington scheme work?
- Registration: you can register for free on the Solar Together site. To register, you will need to provide details about your roof, such as its size and orientation.
- Auction: A reverse auction will be held where pre-vetted solar installers will submit bids for the work. The more people that register, the better the deal should be for each household. The installer with the most competitive package will win the auction.
- Personal recommendation: you will be emailed your personal recommendation based on your registration details. This includes your costs and specifications of your system.
- You decide: the decision is then yours whether you want to accept your recommendation. There is no obligation to continue. We will let you know how long you have to accept your recommendation and update you before the scheme closes.
- Installation: if you accept, the winning installer will contact you to survey your roof and set an installation date.
Helpdesk, telephone and email support are on-hand throughout the whole process, which together with information sessions, will allow households to make an informed decision in a safe and hassle-free environment.
To register for the scheme or to find out further information on how the scheme works, warranties and guarantees, EV charge points, SEG payments and more:
Home Upgrade Grant
The Home Upgrade Grant is available to properties that are not heated by mains gas and have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of Band D, E, F or G. If your property does not have a current EPC and you qualify for the grant, we will arrange for one to be carried out for you.
Examples of improvements that can be made to your home:
- solid wall insulation (internal or external)
- cavity wall insulation
- loft, room-in-roof and flat roof insulation
- under-floor insulation
- air source heat pump
- solar thermal for hot water
- solar panels for electricity generation
- replacement high heat retention electric storage heaters
- heating controls
- external door and window upgrades (single glazing replacements - only in conjunction with other improvements).
Please note that the offer of any improvements is subject to a survey of your property.
The improvements must increase your Energy Performance Band by at least 2 bands to qualify. For example, if your home is currently an EPC Band F or G it will need to reach EPC Band D, and if your property is currently EPC Band D or E it should reach Band C or above with the planned improvements.
Apply for a Home Upgrade Grant
Typically, the main heating source for eligible properties will be electric, LPG, oil or solid fuel. You will still qualify if your property has a mains-gas supply for cooking purposes and you meet all other criteria.
To qualify, you must be a homeowner or private tenant and meet one of the following income criteria:
- you receive an income related benefit (for example, Universal Credit, Pension Credit Guarantee, Council Tax Support, income-related Employment and Support Allowance, or Tax Credits)
- your total combined annual household income before tax, National Insurance and other deductions is no more than £31,000
- your total combined annual household income before tax, National Insurance and other deductions is no more than £20,000 after your housing costs have been deducted (by housing costs, we mean mortgage payments, rent payments and Council Tax)
All energy efficiency improvements are fully funded for qualifying homeowners. Eligible private tenants can apply with their landlord’s approval. In the case of a tenanted property the landlord is required to make a minimum one-third contribution.
Home Improvement Agency
Our Home Improvement Agency (HomeKey+), previously known as the Home Assistance Hub, is delivered by ForHousing. This service is provided across the borough with the aim of supporting people with continued independence in their home.
The Home Improvement Agency (HIA) supports older people, people with disabilities or those on low incomes to repair, improve or adapt their homes. The HIA offer Home Safety Grants and Decent Home Loans.
Home Safety Grant
Home Safety Grants are available to homeowners to carry out urgent repairs where there is a serious risk of harm to the occupier (i.e. new boilers). The grant is only available where no other grant funding or financial assistance is available. Applicants are subject to the following eligibility criteria:
- applicant has an owner’s interest in the property
- category one hazards present (bands A and B)
- maximum £5,000 subject to means testing
- grant must be repaid if applicant moves within five years.
Decent Homes Loan
Decent Homes Loan can help with essential repairs such as roof work, used to fund heating systems, insulation measures or to update kitchen and bathroom facilities. Funding can also be used to remove any serious hazards such as serious dampness, dangerous stairs or electrical wiring which could affect health and safety.
This means-tested equity loan is available from £1,000 to £40,000 for homeowners on low income who need to improve their home to bring it up to the government’s ‘Decent Homes Standard’.