A number of companies are operating across East Renfrewshire to install measures to help make homes more energy efficient at reduced or no cost through the availability of funding or grants.
Published: 17 May 2021
Improvement measures can include installing new boilers, putting in wall and floor insulation, and more.
Many of the companies approved to carry out these improvements often arrive at homes unannounced, and the Council's Trading Standards team is advising residents to ask questions, check if they qualify for any funding before agreeing to have the work carried out and never sign an agreement without reading it.
There are currently four funding initiatives in operation:
The Local Authority ECO Flex scheme
The funding for this scheme is provided by the main gas and electricity companies in Scotland, who are under an obligation to spend some of their profits on improving home energy efficiency.
The Council approves the eligibility of applications put forward by the approved contractors on behalf of householders for the grant funding, but does not have a contract with the installers to carry out work in the private sector and, as such, does not monitor the work and cannot take any responsibility for any work the homeowner has agreed to.
Householders must be satisfied that they're happy to sign any contract directly with the installers. No upfront payment is needed and work can't start until the application for grant funding has been approved.
Energy Efficient Scotland (EES) - area based schemes
Under this scheme (formerly known as HEEPS) local authorities get funding from the Scottish Government to deliver energy efficiency programmes (mainly solid wall insulation) to homes in areas with high levels of fuel poverty. Homes in Council Tax bands A to C within certain postcode areas of East Renfrewshire will be contacted by an approved contractor if they qualify to have work carried out.
Warmer Homes Scotland
Warmer Homes Scotland is the Scottish Government's national scheme to tackle fuel poverty in Scotland. It provides insulation, efficient heating and renewable technologies in the homes of households which are struggling with the costs of high energy bills to keep their homes warm.
Residents can only be referred to this scheme by Home Energy Scotland who will advise if the household qualifies to have work carried out under this initiative. If the household is eligible, a survey will be completed and work carried out by an approved contractor.
Home Energy Scotland Loans
For those residents who are not eligible for funding under the ECO, EES or Warmer Homes Scotland, an interest free loan may be available to households in Scotland who wish to make energy efficient improvements to their home.
For further information on Warmer Homes Scotland, the interest free loan, or to make your home more energy efficient, contact Home Energy Scotland for free impartial energy advice on Freephone 0808 808 2282 or by visiting the Home Energy Scotland website.
Councillor Alan Lafferty, Convener for Environment, said: 'Making energy efficiency improvements to your home can reduce heating bills and help lower carbon emissions, which is good for householders and the environment. Many residents have been questioning if home energy schemes are genuine or too good to be true, so please take some time to familiarise yourself with the four initiatives which are currently running. Businesses visiting or phoning residents should not claim to be from, or give the impression that they are acting on behalf of the Scottish Government or East Renfrewshire Council, or canvass for business at homes where a No Cold Calling Sticker is displayed. Cold calls on the telephone related to energy improvements can cause confusion and it is often difficult to establish if they are genuine. We do not recommend that you engage with cold callers and you should follow the advice at www.ofcom.org.uk.'
Trading Standards have a limited supply of free call blockers to protect vulnerable residents from nuisance/scam callers. To request information on call blockers or a No Cold Calling sticker phone 0141 577 8487 or email email@example.com.