Home Energy Upgrades
Updated: Apr 8, 2022
My office receives many queries about home energy upgrades. While the best source for information is the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland website, I have put together some information below which may be useful. I have included updates on the current status of measures to help you in the process.
I wish you all the very best with your energy upgrading – the time has never been better or more necessary.
Please note this information is about energy upgrades only – information on grants towards the installation of solar panels can also be found on the SEAI website. I also spoke about this in a previous post.
A full home energy upgrade (retrofit), using an SEAI registered One Stop Shop:
· One Stop Shops (OSSs) will coordinate the work of a much larger number of tradespeople and sub-contractors – across the projects they manage. They will act, literally, as a one point of contact for homeowners who are interested in a FULL retrofit of their homes.
· SEAI tells me that the One Stop Shops registration progress is extremely rigorous in order to ensure that those registered will be able to provide the required level of satisfactory service. As such, this process is taking longer than was anticipated. They envisage that the first few One Stop Shops will be listed here in the coming weeks.
· Each One Stop Shop (OSS) will provide a full project management service for homeowners. They will advise on and carry out all aspects of a home energy upgrade, including:
o building awareness;
o surveying the home and designing the upgrades;
o managing the grant application process and making the homeowner aware of private finance offerings;
o engaging contractors to deliver the works;
o managing the project and ensuring installations are done correctly and quality assured.
· Each One Stop Shop (OSS) will manage your grant application to SEAI. Grant payments will be made by SEAI to the One Stop Shop (OSS), which will pass through the full amounts as discounts to the homeowners.
Grants of in the region of 40% (up to 50% in some cases) are available through the OSS. However the cost to the homeowner of a full retrofit may be significantly more than the cost of implementing individual measures.
The Government is set to introduce State backed specific purpose loans in the coming months to support homeowners in bridging the gap between grant and full cost.
The single measure grant route:
Grants for individual measures of up to 80%. Hundreds of registered contractors are available countrywide – for people considering anything less than a full home energy upgrade.
The recently increased 80% grants for cavity wall insulation and attic insulation are available through this route, for people looking to make immediate savings on their bills. In most cases, homeowners will pay the contractor the full amount and be reimbursed by SEAI – this is different to the OSS system above. https://www.seai.ie/grants/home-energy-grants/individual-grants/
For all SEAI home energy grant measures your home must meet certain criteria, that it was built prior to 2011 for insulation and heating controls, and 2021 for heat pumps and renewables.
There are further possible options for elderly people, those with a disability and those who are in receipt of certain social welfare benefits:
Housing Adaptation and Improvement Grants:
Not specifically for energy upgrades but general improvements which can include energy upgrades, where you meet the criteria. Available through your County Council. You can read more about eligibility criteria and measures covered here. Please keep in mind that these grants are means tested, and an early enquiry to your County Council is recommended.
Fully funded Energy Upgrade Scheme:
Available for those who meet the eligibility criteria of receiving certain welfare benefits, who own their own home and this home was built prior to 2006. Note the scheme was expanded in February of this year.