By Rachel Cunningham
The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) has launched a new campaign to encourage homeowners to invest in home energy upgrades as winter approaches.
The authority, which provides a range of government-funded home energy upgrade grants, claims that doing so would create a warmer home with lower energy bills, while also significantly reducing environmental impact.
The SEAI’s government-funded home energy upgrade grants can provide up to 30 per cent of the overall cost of works on a variety of energy upgrades and homeowners can apply for individual grants for insulation, heating controls, heat pumps and solar panels. The grants are fixed amounts ranging from €400 up to €6,000, depending on the works to be undertaken and the size of house. SEAI also offers free home energy upgrades to qualifying homeowners in receipt of certain social welfare benefits.
Alternatively, homeowners can avail of the ‘one stop shop’ service currently being offered by several companies, where they will manage the whole process, including grant application and works, on behalf of homeowners.
Declan Meally, Director of Business and Public Sector with SEAI, commented: “Over 77,660 families in Dublin will enjoy a warmer, cosier, more energy efficient home this winter having already begun their home energy upgrade journey with the support of SEAI. As we head into the winter, now is the perfect time for people to upgrade their home and enjoy a whole new world of comfort.”
For homeowners who don’t know where to begin, SEAI recommends a Building Energy Rating (BER) assessment that should be carried out by a SEAI registered assessor. The assessor will prepare a personalised advisory report for your home setting out the necessary upgrades to bring it up to the modern efficiency and comfort standards.
Cormac Madden, who upgraded his Dublin home in 2016, spoke about his experience of the upgrading: “We did this because we wanted to move away from fossil fuels and lower our carbon emissions. We thought the house was fairly warm previously, but it would get cold if you turned the heating off. Now it’s always warm and there are no draughts either.
“We have a constant, comfortable temperature inside and it doesn’t matter what’s going on outside. I’m glad we’ve done it now because our sons are still living with us and it won’t be long before they go, so they’ve benefited from it too.”