Affordable warmth is being able to heat your home without extending yourself financially. Unfortunately, this is rarely as simple as it sounds. That is why each winter, as temperatures drop, we update and circulate our Affordable Warmth guide to Housing Associations and their tenants.
Why you should care about affordable warmth
During the UK’s first lockdown, 72% of households saw an increase in energy usage. This means that bills rose as unemployment climbed. Although there is now light at the end of the Covid tunnel, winter is still ahead of us and some forecasts show it could be the coldest in years. So what can homeowners do?
Firstly, check if you are eligible for grants from ECO (Energy Company Obligation scheme) for home improvements that will improve your warmth efficiency. The Green Homes Grant can provide up to £5,000 or £10,000 to homeowners for improvements such as insulations, heat pumps, and double glazing.
What is fuel poverty?
Around 2.53 million households in the UK are classified as living in fuel poverty. This refers to residents whose required fuel costs are above the national median level, leaving them with a residual income below the poverty line were they to meet their fuel demands.
In short, one in ten households in the UK has to choose between being cold or going hungry.
Thankfully, there are government schemes that can help vulnerable residents get affordable warmth, especially those living in low-income housing. These include the Winter Fuel Payment, the Cold Weather Payment, and the Warm Home Discount Scheme. You can apply online, or contact your landlord or housing association to discuss ways to tackle fuel poverty through warmth efficiency improvements.
What can you do if you don’t qualify for government grants?
There are several ways for property owners to improve their energy and warmth efficiency to cut costs and stay cosy all winter. Our Affordable Warmth guide for 2020/2021 outlines larger home improvements such as double glazing and roof insulation. As well as easy tips like wrapping up and closing your curtains.
If this year has taught us anything, it is the importance of being prepared for the unexpected. Who could have predicted the effect of both Brexit and Covid-19 on energy prices? Or the demand for energy from an unprecedented number of people staying at home. Governments, businesses, housing associations and even private homeowners are realising the value of risk management and planning ahead.
At Monarch, we do everything we can to offer our clients stability in uncertain times. Our goal is to help our housing association clients and their tenants make the most of the energy they’re paying for. Saving them money wherever we can.
To find out how we can help you get through the winter and beyond, contact us at Monarch. To download our Affordable Warmth guide, enter your contact info below.