ECO4 – The Changes You Need To Know About
The ECO scheme is back underway, and possibly for the last time.
What is the ECO Scheme?
The Energy Company Obligation (ECO) is a government -funded scheme that requires energy companies to improve the energy-efficiency of UK homes.
The scheme is designed to help tackle fuel poverty but it’s become more relevant as the cost of living and energy crisis takes hold.
ECO has been running since 2013 and runs in roughly 4 year cycles. Now, it’s back as ECO 4 but after 2026, it looks like that’s it.
This time though, things are a little different and it may affect your ability to get customers.
So, what are they?
What’s New to ECO4?
New Qualifying Benefits
Some of the qualifying benefits have been given a shake-up. That’s great news if you’re an installer, because previously ineligible homeowners can now join the scheme. Whereas some people who have been eligible since 2013 have dropped out.
It’s worth remembering that the Government is still consulting on ECO4, and some eligibility criteria may change. On the other hand, with the energy crisis set to take a firmer grip this winter, it’s unlikely that the government reduces the schemes scope.
New Eligible Benefits:
- Housing Benefit (estimated to be 3.6 million people)
- Pension Credit Savings (estimated to be 1.4 million people)
No Longer Eligible Benefits:
- Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
- Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
- Attendance Allowance
- Carer’s Allowance
- Severe Disablement Allowance
- Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit
- War Pensions Mobility Supplement
- Constant Attendance Allowance
- Armed Forces Independence Payment
Increase in the Number of Measures Installed
During ECO3, energy companies were limited to a maximum of 25% of the obligation.
However, under ECO4 that figure has been boosted to 50%!
Boiler Grant Reduction
In the three years of ECO3 between 2018 and 2021, 134,000 new boilers were installed.
However, this time around, only 5,000 new boiler grants will be approved.
Whilst this may sound like cause for alarm, it’s not. There’s still ample time to target boiler replacement customers through the ECO4 scheme. However, it’s essential that you capitalise now and target effectively.
Once the cap is reached, there won’t be anymore grants, regardless of whether the customer is eligible or not.
What Shall I Do About the Changes?
Whilst there are a lot of change to wrap your head around, the vast majority of the ECO scheme is going to remain the same.
So, get out there and take advantage of the newly eligible customers before the quotas start to fill up.
Already, we have ECO installers fitting spray foam insulation, loft insulation, and new boilers with our EPC data lists.
Don’t waste time and start speaking to eligible prospects with low EPC ratings now.