Energy-efficiency grants to private homes extended

SEAI believes 1.7 million householders may avail of funds to help sustainable energy use

 Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources Denis Naughten: “All of us have a responsibility to act on climate change, and improving our home’s energy performance is a significant step in decreasing our collective carbon footprint.” Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources Denis Naughten: “All of us have a responsibility to act on climate change, and improving our home’s energy performance is a significant step in decreasing our collective carbon footprint.” Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

 

The range of grants and level of financial support for householders who wish to make their homes more energy-efficient has been extended, the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland has announced.

It estimates 1.7 million homes in Ireland could be eligible for the increased and additional grants, which will help make houses “more energy-efficient, cheaper to run and more comfortable to live in”.

The latest figures show the average homeowner spends €1,850 a year heating their homes. Properly insulating the walls of the average home can save up to €600 per year on heating bills, according to the SEAI.

Grants range from €300 for attic insulation, to €700 for upgrades to heating controls, to €6,000 for external wall insulation. They typically cover one-third of the total cost of the works for an average home.

From April this year, a new grant of €3,500 for heat pumps will also be available. Heat pumps are electrical devices which convert energy from the air outside of your home into useful heat, in the same way a fridge extracts heat from its inside. In well-insulated houses, they are very economical to run. They are “an extremely efficient alternative” to traditional oil, gas, solid fuel and electric home heating systems.

Decarbonising Ireland

Minister for Climate Action and Environment Denis Naughten said ensuring homes were energy-efficient was a critical part of decarbonising Ireland.

“As a country, we have a critically important task ahead to ensure our homes are energy-efficient. This is why I secured increased Government funding this year in budget negotiations so these new and increased grants can be available to thousands more householders across the country and to encourage more investment in home-energy improvements,” he added.

“All of us have a responsibility to act on climate change, and improving our home’s energy performance is a significant step in decreasing our collective carbon footprint,” Mr Naughten said.

Already, over 370,000 homes in Ireland have availed of home-energy grants, SEAI chief executive Jim Gannon said. The best way to reduce energy costs in the long term is to simply use less, he added. “There are a range of grants available for attic and wall insulation, heating upgrades and solar thermal. At the very least, we are asking people to find out more about the extra supports now available and to see what might be suitable for their home.”

Homeowners can apply for grants online at seai.ieOnce approved, they have six months to get the works completed and claim the grant. More information is available at seai.ie/homeenergygrants/