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Who qualifies for a boiler grant?

Summary of topics:

The UK government runs the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) programme, a scheme designed to reduce fuel poverty and carbon emissions by funding initiatives such as free boiler grants. The criteria needed to qualify for a boiler grant depends on a number of criteria:

  • The existing boiler must be at least 8 years old.
  • The property’s owner must be the person applying for the grant. Councils and privately-rented properties are not eligible.
  • The property must be connected to the mains gas supply. Boilers running on other fuel sources, such as LPG gas, biomass, and oil are not included.
  • The applicant must receive at least one of the government’s list of benefits.

Who qualifies for a free boiler?

The criteria for receiving a free boiler grant are strict. In order to qualify applicants must receive at least one benefit from the following:

List of eligible benefits

Universal CreditTax Credits (Child Tax Credits and Working Tax Credits)Pension Guarantee CreditCarer’s Allowance
Constant Attendance AllowancePersonal Independence PaymentAttendance AllowanceIndustrial Injuries Disablement Benefit
War Pensions Mobility SupplementArmed Forces Independence PaymentDisability Living AllowanceIncome-related Employment and Support Allowance
Income-based Jobseekers AllowanceIncome SupportSevere Disablement AllowanceChild benefit*

*To qualify through child benefits the applicant must fall within the following income thresholds*:

Single claimantCouple
One child: £18,500One child: £25,500
Two children: £23,000Two children: £30,000
Three children: £27,500Three children: £34,500
Four or more children: £32,000Four or more children: £39,000

*Correct as of December 2018

If the applicant meets these criteria, they could be eligible to receive a free boiler as part of the ECO scheme. The energy suppliers involved* in the ECO scheme are:

  • Avro Energy
  • Bristol Energy
  • British Gas
  • Bulb
  • Co-operative Energy
  • E
  • Economy Energy
  • Ecotricity
  • EDF Energy
  • Eon
  • Extra Energy
  • Flow Energy
  • Green Network
  • Green Star
  • iSupply
  • Npower
  • Octopus Energy
  • OVO Energy
  • Pure Planet
  • Scottish and Southern Energy
  • Scottish and Southern Energy
  • Scottish Power
  • Shell Energy
  • So Energy
  • Spark Energy
  • SSE
  • Utilita
  • Utility Warehouse
  • Utility Warehouse

*Correct as of November 2020

The Affordable Warmth Obligation states that energy suppliers must install replacement boilers free of charge for households that meet the criteria above and cannot afford a new boiler. While many people will receive a free boiler grant, the majority of applicants will likely receive a grant that pays towards part of the cost of replacing a non-condensing or condensing boiler, as well as making other energy-saving improvements such as insulation.

The criteria for this scheme include receiving certain benefits and living in privately owned or rented properties and if the property has an energy rating of E, F or G. Individuals living in social housing are also eligible in some circumstances.

How much is a boiler grant?

The amount of funding available to an applicant depends on the energy efficiency of their home. An energy assessment must be carried out, which can be done free of charge in many cases.

you get is determined by the efficiency of your home, so an energy assessment will be carried out free of charge. In some instances a small contribution may be required.

Can I get a boiler grant on PIP?

Yes, Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is one of the benefits included in the ECO scheme. People with long term ill health or disabilities are able to qualify for a free boiler grant, provided they meet the other criteria set by the government as well.

How do I get a boiler grant?

If you are eligible for a boiler grant your energy supplier should let you know. If you believe you are eligible but have not been contacted, you should enquire about the scheme with your supplier. The first step will be attending a consultation with your supplier to answer the necessary questions. The supplier will then arrange a date with you for a technical survey, during which an installer will confirm the boiler grant options available to you.

Following the technical survey, the installer will gather the necessary information to assess the property, before carrying out the improvements themselves. All warranty and maintenance documents will be provided by the supplier throughout the process for full disclosure.

Summary

  • The UK government’s ECO scheme is designed to help improve the energy efficiency of low-income households throughout boiler grants and other financial support.
  • The list of criteria is long, with applicants needing to receive some form of relevant benefit as well as meeting the salary thresholds set by the government.
  • The property itself must also fall within specific energy standards to be eligible, with the most energy-inefficient homes receiving the largest grants.