Green deal reports and renewable heat incentive: a personal journey
Posted by Tasha Kosviner on 29 April 2014 at 1:07 pm
Unless you’re planning to use a green deal loan to fund the work, or hoping you might qualify for cashback towards it, not having the minimum levels of insulation in place could mean you end up paying for a second assessment once the work is done.
That was the first lesson I learnt – to my chagrin – when I had my green deal assessment this week.
I’m primarily getting the assessment so that I can claim the renewable heat incentive (RHI) for my air source heat pump. But I will also be interested to find out what else the resulting green deal report might recommend for my home.
In order to qualify for the renewable heat incentive (RHI), your home must have cavity wall insulation and 250mm of loft insulation, where possible. Unfortunately, due to some rather injudiciously placed storage boxes, my loft insulation has been squashed and is, in places, no longer at the required minimum level.
Since my assessor was a stickler – as of course they should all be – he said he could only record my loft as having 150mm of insulation. My green deal report would therefore recommend topping up of loft insulation and until that was done, I would not qualify for RHI.
Lucky for me, my assessor, who hails from the Green Deal Advisor Association, was an exceptionally reasonable chap, who offered to come back and inspect for free once I’d bumped up my loft insulation. But as he warned not all assessors would be so understanding.
And when you’re paying £150-£250 or more per assessment, it’s probably worth making sure you have everything in place first.
I will have to wait until I get my report to find out exactly what my home’s energy rating is and what the green deal recommends, but I’m not holding my breath: among the other things I Iearnt during the assessment was the fact that apparently the assessment procedure doesn’t really work that well for chalet bungalows – or so-called room-in-roof houses – such as mine.
The green deal report is generated when your green deal assessor inputs your home’s data – property type, property dimensions, evidence of insulation etc – into a standard programme. If your house is a standard model, the programme works very well but if your home has any anomalies – such as rooms in roofs, modern extensions, non-conventional heating systems – then it apparently struggles.
In other words it may generate recommendations inappropriate for your building, and not make recommendations which should seem obvious. See Cathy’s blog on her experience of her own room-in-roof property, as case in point.
I chose a green deal assessor who had many years of experience doing domestic energy assessments prior to the green deal in the hopes that his experience would help him navigate the blunt tool of the green deal assessment procedure in order to come up with the best, most appropriate set of recommendations for me. The extent to which he is able, or willing, to override the system in order to do this remains to be seen. Watch this space!
From the blog
RHI: your questions answered (April 2014)
How to choose a green deal advisor (August 2013)
How do I apply for the domestic RHI (April 2014)
How to read your green deal advice report (July 2013)
If you have a question about anything in the above blog, please ask it in the comments section below.
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