Retrofitting our homes

The climate crisis means we need change our homes – both to reduce their carbon footprints,and to make them fit to live in as climate change (floods, storms, heatwaves etc) become more frequent and extreme.

This page is still being worked on, but it contains: 1/. a basic outline of the kinds of changes we need to make to our homes, 2/.some info on useful grants for retrofitting your home and 3/. a couple of sources of useful advice

1/. What kinds of change do our homes need to tackle climate change? The starting point is to insulate thoroughly – lofts, walls, high quality double glazing, in some cases underfloor – in order to minimise energy use and heat loss, as well as reducing over-heating during heat waves. Good ventilation systems combined with heat recovery extraction fans can help with this too. Then it makes sense to put in solar panels for both hot water and electricity generation.  Once our homes are thoroughly  insulated, the question is how to heat them? We need to move away from fossil fuels, so air and ground source heat pumps are a good option here.

There are people locally who have done alotsof work on their homes to make them more energy efficient. There is an open green homes event on Sat 25th Sep if you’d like to ask questions. For more info, click here.

This can all be expensive, but there are some grants around – especially for people on low incomes and for landlords. For people at the heat pump stage, the Renewable Heat Incentive can help. 

Locally both Leicester City Council and Leicestershire County Council are offering Green Homes Grants to help people on low incomes make their homes more energy efficient. They cover things like External wall insulation, Air source heat pumps (low carbon heating), Solar panels, Door improvements, Cavity insulation, Windows upgrades, Loft insulation. They are available to you if you own your home, it has an energy performance rating of E or below, and your household’s annual income is under £30,000. You should be able to get up to £10,000 and won’t have to pay a contribution. Landlords have to contribute a minimum of 1/3 of the total costs and the maximum grant available per rental property is £5,000. The work would be organised for you by E.On who are delivering the scheme, which means they organise the contractors to do the work – they will also arrange free energy performance rating assessments for your home to see if you are eligable.

As Climate Action we’d really like to support people to live in warmer more climate-friendly homes. At the moment we don’t know anyone who has had one of the Green Homes grants, but we’d like to help you apply for them. If you’d like someone from Climate Action to help you through the process of applying for a grant, or  just have a phone chat about how we could help, please get in touch here.