However it has suffered from teething problems as the Government struggles to organise finance, IT and issues around moving house and even clearing people’s attics. Frustrated building companies expressed disappointment that the legal contracts around the loans were not sorted out sooner so they could start installing measures. Paul Hicks, Sustainability & Design Manager at VELUX, said it was disappointing so many people who have had an assessment have failed to carry through to a deal.
“The disappointing Green Deal results, showing conversions of assessments to be less than 1%, is a major blow to the Government’s commitment to being ‘the greenest ever’. Thus far the initiative has failed to deliver a viable framework for home improvements and consequently has simply not addressed the key issues surrounding energy efficiency in existing housing stock.” Nigel Banks, of Keepmoat, a specialist in installing efficiency measures, said builders have been unable to offer contracts because the financial packages are not yet in place.
“The take-up figures are very low, but this was to be anticipated as the legal contracts to offer Green Deal finance are not in place, meaning just a few of the 60 Green Deal providers are actually able to offer finance at present. “It is frustrating that these legal contracts were not in place sooner but we expect this to be resolved in the next few weeks and then the take-up figures for the Green Deal will begin to build in July and August,” he said. The UK has some of the draughtiest homes in Europe, leaking money out of the economy and fuelling climate change. The Coalition hope to improve the efficiency of the UK’s 26 million homes through the Green Deal and other measures introduced in January this year.
The “cashback” scheme, that offers a lump sum for installing “easy wins” like double glazing and new boilers on a first come first served basis, has been a success. Some 5,118 households have claimed £263,000 cash back – mostly for boilers. Also the new Energy Company Obligation, the requires energy companies to improve efficiency in poorer households, has made that 81,798 installations so far.
But the Green Deal is struggling.
Despite months to prepare, 600 trained builders on standby and the involvement of 40 organisations, including household names like B&Q and British Gas, it has had a slow start.