Trading Standards are warning that scams targeting homeowners with promises about the Green Homes Grant scheme started appearing just days after the new home energy efficiency scheme was announced by the government.
Nationally, there have already been reports that some homeowners have received scam calls, emails and texts telling them that they are eligible for the grants, while other scams have claimed to offer specific energy-saving measures such as insulation.
The genuine Green Homes Grant scheme will launch in September.
The government is yet to announce full details but what is known so far is that homeowners in England will be able to access up to £5,000 of vouchers to make energy-saving improvements. The vouchers will pay for at least two thirds of eligible measures and could cover updates to insulation, boilers and glazing.
If you want to participate in the scheme, you will need to apply online, choose from recommended energy efficiency measures, and use an accredited trades person.
You will get a voucher once the trader has provided a quote and the work is approved.
However, until full details of the scheme are announced, it’s impossible to say whether your planned home improvement project will be eligible.
Roll-out to the scheme will be done locally, and it will be up to the homeowner to make the approach.
No cold calling will be involved so you will instantly know it is a scam if you get a call or text out of the blue.
This isn’t the first time scammers have targeted energy efficiency schemes. Many appeared around the Green Deal scheme in 2013, which also helped homeowners to finance energy-saving measures.
At the time, a number of individuals and companies were prosecuted for unfair consumer practices.
Trading Standards advise that with this new Green Homes Grant, keep an eye out for government announcements on what the grant will include and how to access it.
You won’t be able to sign up before it launches in September.
Residents should remain cautious if you receive any phone calls, texts, emails or doorstep calls from any traders assuring you that you or your property will be eligible for the scheme at present.
Our advice is as always not to buy or commit to anything based on a cold call.
Trading Standards also urge residents with elderly or vulnerable family or neighbours to make them aware of the danger of such calls.
If you would like general support or advice to making your home more energy efficient, contact:
Act on Energy
Tel: 0800 988 2881