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Ask the Green Deal Pig.

Thinking about improving the energy-efficiency of your home? Find the expert answers here each week.

Q How can I save on my energy bills without spending? Our Green Deal Advisers (GDA) will offer you free and impartial advice on what improvements can be fully funded, saving on your energy bills without spending money up front.

They must complete a Green Deal Advice Report (GDAR) on your home. They could suggest LED lighting, saving more than PS60 a year, and solar panels to benefit you by PS700-plus per year, among other options.

Q My roof isn't suitable for solar panels, is there anything else I can get? There are currently more than 43 energy improvement measures approved by the Government included in the Green Deal. They range from simple measures such as loft insulation through to innovative technologies including biomass boilers and air source heat pumps.

All measures included in the Green Deal have to pass strict tests to make sure they are suitable for installation.

QI had cavity wall insulation done 15 years ago. Am I am still getting the benefit of insulation? HELMS can send a surveyor out to assess properties built before 1980, which have then had cavity wall insulation retro-fitted. As part of the Green Deal process, we must assess all aspects of your property to identify your home's current energy rating.

Q Do you have to use Green Deal Finance to get the recommended measures? No - Green Deal Finance is just one of many ways you can fund the recommended improvements. HELMS is a Green Deal Provider, which means it has access to funding and grants to help homeowners to improve energy efficiency.

QI've already paid for a Green Deal Advice Report. Can you now install the recommended measures? The Green Deal is a new scheme and producing an accurate GDAR is a difficult procedure. Our standard practice is to complete our own GDAR, at no additional cost, for your property so that we can be sure it has been done correctly before we quote for the work, ensuring you get the full amount of funds you are entitled to. It confirms the recommendations are appropriate for your home.

QI want a new boiler as it's more than seven years old but I've been told I don't qualify for a free one. Why not? This can be for several reasons. The most common include confusion about ECO funded "free boilers".

ECO is part of the Green Deal programme aimed at assisting those who need help to install measures at their property. There is additional funding if you are receiving qualifying state benefits, however, the funding can only be used for measures that need improving.

The Green Deal is based purely on energy efficiency so it does not matter what age your boiler is, it matters how energy efficient it is.

If not on the qualifying benefits and you have an old boiler, it may still not be recommended. The predicted savings may not cover the cost of installing a new boiler.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Jan 10, 2014
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