Frequently asked questions
Why does ourgreendeal.net only cover Bristol and Somerset?
The aim of this website (and the people who funded it) is to promote the government’s Green Deal in Bristol and Somerset – the county itself, and the unitary authorities of North Somerset and Bath & North East Somerset.
That said, the examples of low-carbon retrofitting you'll find on ourgreendeal.net will be of interest to anyone looking to improve their home, and many of the registered Green Deal assessors and installers listed on the site may work in neighbouring counties or beyond.
What is the Green Deal?
The Green Deal is a Government scheme designed to encourage householders to make energy saving improvements to their homes – such as insulation, draught-proofing, renewable energy etc – using fully accredited contractors. It includes a neat new way of funding these improvements from the savings on fuel bills that these improvements will bring about. Click here to go to a fuller explanation of the Green Deal on the Government's website.
The Green Deal links in with the Energy Company Obligation, which will provide grants for measures which have not been widely subsidised before, like solid-wall insulation.
What happens during a Green Deal Assessment?
The assessment consists of a property survey and is carried out by an accredited Green Deal Assessor who will produce a Green Deal Advice Report. The report outlines your properties energy performance and describes how the amount of energy you actually use compares to the amount of energy you would be expected to use based on your type of home and heating system. The assessor will then recommend some possible Green Deal measures based on this information. A Green Deal Assessment typically costs about £175.
What is the Energy Company Obligation (ECO)?
The Energy Company Obligation (ECO) is a Government regulation that requires the largest UK energy suppliers to work towards cutting the UK's carbon footprint.
Under the ECO, the six biggest energy companies (Southern Electric, British Gas, EDF, Scottish Power, nPower and E.on) are required to fund efforts to reduce the amount of carbon produced and the fuel bills in domestic customer’s homes.
This scheme was launched at the same time as the Green Deal in 2013, and consists of two parts: the carbon saving element (which includes the Carbon Saving Communities Obligation) and Affordable Warmth.
The main objective of the carbon saving ECO is to work alongside the Green Deal to provide additional support for more complex energy efficiency solutions (for example, in older properties with solid walls or off the gas network). These homes may not be able to fund energy efficiency improvements through Green Deal finance alone, so many households will receive packages of measures jointly funded by a mixture of Green Deal finance and the ECO. This is expected to particularly focus on solid wall insulation.
Carbon Saving Communities
The Carbon Saving Communities obligation (CSCo) will target households in specified areas across the UK. The CSCo will focus on low income households and areas, ensuring that these properties receive energy efficiency measures. If you live in one of these areas, you are likely to be eligible for schemes offering insulation improvements such as solid wall, loft and cavity wall insulation.
The affordable warmth ECO is designed to provide support to low income and vulnerable households who are least able to heat their homes to an adequate standard. Any measure which improves the thermal performance of a property and reduces the cost of a customer’s fuel bills could be eligible for affordable warmth ECO support. Energy suppliers are expected to deliver primarily new heating systems and basic insulation measures, such as cavity wall and loft insulation, under the affordable warmth obligation.
Can I use my own builder or installer?
Only an authorised Green Deal Installer can install energy efficiency improvements under the Green Deal finance mechanism. Installers may specialise in one or multiple measures. This also applies to measures installed with support from ECO.
If you are not funding your home improvements through the Green Deal finance mechanism or taking advantage of ECO subsidies, you are free to use any installer you like.
Only authorised Installers will be able to identify themselves as ‘Green Deal Installers’ and use the Green Deal Quality Mark.
How do I make my home a case study on ourgreendeal.net?
We'd like as many people as possible (from Somerset) to share their experience of making their homes more energy efficient through the Green Deal. This includes people who have just had a Green Deal Assessment done, as well as those who have gone on to install any of the Green Deal energy efficiency measures. To upload your details yourself, you need to register (click here) and follow the simple instructions on the page.