I contacted three suppliers found through the simpleenergyadvice website about getting internal wall insulation done in one room of my house. The only one to respond (so far - 4 days later) said “we don’t cover your area”, contrary to their listing on the website. About half of the installers returned by the search don’t appear to be public-facing businesses, with no website or social media presence, let alone customer reviews, case studies or testimonials.
Hi Eddie and welcome to the Carbon Co-op Community forum!
Unfortunately it looks like the Green Homes Grant is only available for people in England. The Energy Saving Trust website is reccomending that people in Northern Ireland contact NI Energy Advice to find out more about energy efficiency grants, such as the Affordable Warmth Scheme.
I don’t know if other people have more detailed information about the kind of schemes which might be available in Northern Ireland?
One of our collaborators, Tom Woolley, is based in Northern Ireland and he invited us to speak to civil servants there in 2018. They were very receptive to the idea of incentivising retrofit works but limited in what they could do at the time due to the assembly being disbanded at that time. Hopefully now things are up and running again there might be movement - but we could ask Tom for an update too. http://www.bevanarchitects.com/practice/team/tomwoolley/
I have my list of installers ready and will be telephoning for quotes this week. I have a gut feeling that it will prove a frustrating waste of time at this point of the process.
However, the general information given on the ‘Simple Energy Advice’ plan is a good start. It talks about insulation, ventilation, condensation and good practice for fitting.
(I tried to upload mine here for you to see, but it won’t allow the PDF).
Despite this plus, I can’t help but wonder if we have been set up to fail on this and its just a tick box exercise on behalf of our government, who only seem to show any interest in carbon drawdown matters under duress.
It feels increasingly likely that the system set up for this grant and for homeowners to have a successful experience will fail at procuring installers.
I am cynical and will be definitely write to local government to feed back about this.
Todays blow by blow account of chasing up providers given on my Simple Energy Advice List.
Telephoned Climate Insulation Ltd based in Cheadle. I Explained they are listed as one of my local providers for the Gov Grant Scheme on my energy advice plan -the call handler quickly directed me to their website, adding they’re not up and running with the grant scheme yet!! That I should register my enquiry there!!
Trying to gain a bit more info, I asked about the type of insulation for the underfloor and room in roof, he said he wasn’t sure, that he would have to check as he couldn’t remember the name!!!???
He came back with ’ it’s that glasswool type’
I then asked if there is a choice of insulation , to which he replied ‘No, it’s just the glasswool type.’ There was a definite feeling of uncertainty!! This is their website - looking at it, it seemed incomplete in some areas too… https://www.climateinsulationlimited.com/contact-us/
Next on the list was ‘Install Easy Ltd’ also ‘Improve Easy Ltd’ they have the same contact details and also direct you to their website. https://www.improveasy.com/assessor/
Seems like they take a percentage for providing you with one of their registered installers…
Not impressed…I haven’t yet spoken to anyone able to or wanting to discuss insulation.
Next on the list I have just tried is Green Grant Installs. This is a call center which takes your details. The call handler said that originally they were registering enquiries online ;- having received hardly any, they have changed to taking calls and now have many more people registering interest. It seems GGI represent a network of registered installers , for various insulation, windows and doors etc. Taking my details, they want me to Whatsapp over photos of the roof (for the room in roof insulation) and of the sub floor (for the underfloor insulation), so they can assess for a quote!! This is their site … [https://www.greengrantinstalls.co.uk/] Don’t know how effective photos will be for assessment??
My feeling so far is that if I use anyone for this grant, it is likely to be installers already known to CC community members.
To sum up a good couple of hours chasing providers yesterday, I haven’t spoke to one person who can give me a quote or advice!!! Nor have I had a call back from any where I left details.
The Trustmark Website listed a lot of registered installers -many more than I was given on my advice list. The links I was given, seem to be acting as some kind of middle man/agency for registered installers. No doubt making the whole process more costly and time consuming for the homeowner and the tax payer!! I bet the paperwork for installers to apply for payment through these vouchers is a full time job!!
I’m going to follow up by going direct to listed installers on Trustmark… see how I get there.
Perhaps I can find a more effective and efficient way in to the system, that is clearly having some teething problems!! We need people to be able to access this grant and make it work for them.
Omar is the first actual installer I have spoken with. They have PAS2019 underfloor insulation, but haven’t actually fitted any yet. He explained to me about the difference between PAS2017 and PAS 2019 - how the standard for 2019 is higher.
His company is still in the process of registering for jobs via the Green Grant Scheme and the ECO3. He recognises they might get swamped with work and potentially not be paid enough. He explained the process as an installer registering for Trustmark has been rigorous - but as yet he doesn’t know how the process will work out. He feels ECO3 funding is more accessible as a registered installer.
Talking with him about underfloor insulation he definitely seemed knowledgeable and I respected him for his honesty when he said he’d not fitted an underfloor insulation yet - despite having the qualification.
I directed him to Carbon Coop Community for learning and sharing with us. I thanked him for his honesty and feedback about his experience of the green grant so far. He said he’s looking forward to learning about heatpumps too. We definitely need more new enthusiastic installers like Omar onboard for our eco home improvements.
Don’t know what I’m going to do about my insulation - a big part of me thinks I will fit this underfloor insulation myself!! As for insulating the kitchen roof - I better start learning about the correct specification for that too !!
My Simple Energy plan was for flat roof insulation, despite clearly saying that our flat is not on the top floor. Any kind of understanding that, even if we were on the top floor, we’d have to get permission from the freeholder and that the bit above our flat could not be done without the rest of the roof over other flats was not considered.
Spoke with my colleague today at school. Like myself she spent a big portion of time out of the half term putting in an application.
When she started ringing the reccommended listed installers for her area - one being Nexgen she had a very disappointing experience.
While asking them about insulation (underfloor and loft)she explained to me they wanted to talk boilers, despite having insisted to the call handler she didn’t want a boiler. The call handler then started saying ’ Oooh I’m sorry!! Sorry!! You’re breaking up!!’ then put the phone down on her!!
Apparently to get accreditation traders have to do a lot of paperwork .
The only trader I spoke with is a heating engineer who had gotten himself accredited to do underfloor insulation. He hasn’t fitted one yet and was very honest saying he wouldn’t know what to charge either !! He has pas2030 accreditation to fit underfloor insulation, which he said is more up to date than pas2035 which he also has. A problem he noted about this is that traders with pas2035 can still operate with that accreditation, despite there being a higher standard now with pas2030, but because he has the pas2030 he can no longer do jobs to pas2035 standard. I wondered about further implications through these varying standards for house holders and traders…