New National Insulation Programme

The new National insulation programme or Home Energy Scheme (HES) is now available. Its a National Scheme managed and implemented by the Sustainable Energy Ireland (SEI).

All owners of existing houses nation wide contemplating retrofitting of their Roof and wall Insulation, Heating System upgrades and commission BER assessments ( as a pre requisite ) in order to improve the energy efficiency of their properties are eligible for substantial grants offered by SEI.

What Categories of Improvements are considered for these Grants?
Basically four measures are considered. ie;

• Roof insulation
• Wall insulation
• Heating Controls
• BER assessments

The Categories and the applicable maximum grants are as follows.

Roof insulation – Euro 250.00

Wall insulation
• Cavity Wall Insulation – Euro 400
• Internal Wall Dry lining – Euro 2,500
• External Wall Insulation – Euro 4,000

Heating Controls –
• High efficiency Gas or Oil Fired
Boilers with Heating Controls Upgrade – Euro 700
• Heating Controls Upgrade – Euro 500

BER Assessment
A “before” and
“after” BER Assessment – Euro 200

Some important points to consider in this regard are;
• These values are fixed.
• The grants for each measure must be approved prior to undertaking the material purchases and carrying out the work.
• All purchases and contract payments should be completed by the property owner prior to applying for the reimbursement of approved funds.
• The energy efficiency of the new Heating Appliance should be 90% or more.
• The Heating Controls Upgrade should at least have two zones (which could be Space Heating and Water Heating), 7 day Programmer, Time and Temperature control of Electric Emersion Heater, at least one more zone or 3 nos. TRVs and Control and Boiler interlock,
• In the event the Fixed Grant Value is in excess of actual cost (together with VAT) the latter amount will be paid.
• You are entitled to apply for each measure separately but the value of the first application should be at least Euro 500 excluding BER Assessment Costs.
• You are entitled for a grant for BER assessment if one is done before and another after the upgrades.

Carrying out the upgrades

The upgrades must compulsorily be carried by competent contractors registered in a list maintained by SEI in order to qualify for the grants. The BER assessments have to be carried out by Assessors who are approved and listed in the SEI registry for BER assessors. The registration of contractors is currently on and once this is completed SEI will entertain your applications for the HES Grants.
It is a prerequisite according to the terms and conditions of the scheme that no purchases or measure should be undertaken prior to obtaining the approval to qualify for the grants.

In conclusion it must be said that Euro 100 million has been allocated for this scheme and it’s up to the home owners to make maximum use of it. Carrying out upgrades to your home’s old heating system and its controls may now be a necessity due to age and the inefficient designs. Improved technology and better material will bring in more savings in energy and its costs. However carrying out retrofits and improvements by one’s self may be a nightmare to many in this recession hit times. A scheme like HES must therefore be grabbed with both hands by all those eligible.

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