Home Upgrade Grant Scheme (HUG2)

Home Upgrade Grant Scheme (HUG2)

Free home energy efficiency improvements for low-income households not connected to mains gas for central heating.

What is the Home Upgrade Grant scheme?

The Home Upgrade Grant scheme (HUG2) is designed to help improve the comfort and energy efficiency of lower income homes in Worcestershire that are not heated by mains gas central heating. The scheme offers several other benefits, including reducing a home’s carbon footprint and energy bills, with no cost to the resident.

Worcestershire County Council is working with Redditch Borough Council, Bromsgrove, Wychavon and Malvern Hills District Councils to deliver this programme. 

Worcestershire County Council are working with your local energy charity Act on Energy who will be supporting householders with the eligibility assessment and application process.

If you live in Worcester City or Wyre Forest District, visit your council’s website for information on the schemes operating in your area. 

Homeowners and private renters can apply if they think they meet the eligibility criteria and their property is suitable. Private renters need to seek permission from the landlord.

Eligible landlords should not own more than 4 private rental properties and will be required to contribute at least one third of the total costs of the measures installed. If the measures identified are priced higher than the recommended Government guidelines, then the landlord would be asked to contribute the difference.

What could you receive?

If you qualify for the scheme, your property will undergo a survey to see which measures would improve its energy efficiency the most.

This is based on a ‘fabric first’ approach which prioritises insulation and may require improved ventilation.

Certain energy efficiency measures will be prioritised including:

  • external/internal wall insulation
  • loft insulation/room in roof insulation
  • cavity wall insulation
  • air source heat pumps
  • hot water cylinder insulation and thermostat
  • digital/smart heating controls
  • Solar PV

Other measures may be recommended such as: 

  • low energy lighting
  • underfloor insulation
  • double glazing
  • high temperature heat pumps
  • solar thermal, direct electric heaters, high retention storage heaters

These measures are subject to a value for money assessment and available funds.

Your property type and structure will impact what measures and funding you can receive.

Are you eligible?

The scheme will help homeowners and tenants living in homes with poor energy efficiency ratings who also have a low income.

To qualify householders must meet one of the following income criteria:

  • have a household income of £31,000 or less, including any benefits you receive, with the exception of Personal Independence Payment (PIP), Disability Living Allowance (DLA) and Attendance Allowance (AA).

or

and

  • are not connected to mains gas for central heating
  • pay council tax to Redditch Borough, or Bromsgrove, Malvern or Wychavon District Councils. Those who are exempt will be asked to provide other evidence to satisfy they have an eligible postcode
  • live in a property with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of D, E, F, G

Find your EPC on the Government’s website.

No EPC?  Don’t worry, this will be carried out free of charge if you meet all other criteria.  

Tenants in the private rented sector may also be eligible but would need to seek permission from their landlord. Please notify your landlord about the scheme.

Please note: Eligibility for the scheme does not guarantee that energy efficiency measures will be received. 

Are you a landlord?

Landlords may be eligible for funding if they meet the following criteria: 

  • tenants must meet one of the income criteria set out in the 'Are you eligible?' section
  • the property must not have mains gas for their primary heating
  • you must own 4 or less private rental properties. and will be required to contribute a minimum of at least one third towards the total costs of the installed measures
  • the property has an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of D or E. Properties rated F and G may be eligible if you have registered exemptions under the Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property) (England and Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2019

For more information please refer to the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard 2018 (MEES)

Find your EPC on the Government’s website.

No EPC?  Don’t worry, this will be carried out free of charge if you meet all other criteria.  

Please note: Eligibility for the scheme does not guarantee that energy efficiency measures will be received. 

How to apply?

To register your interest, contact your local Energy charity 'Act on Energy', who will support you through the eligibility checks and application process.

Act on Energy have been helping Midlands households with energy advice for 25 years. 

Call Act on Energy on freephone 0800 988 2881 

Alternatively, email advice@actonenergy.org.uk or register by completing the online expressions of interest form which will be passed onto Act on Energy:

What happens next?

Each eligible property will be allocated a Retrofit Coordinator who will go through the recommendations outlined in the survey and will be the main point of contact in relation to the works.

If you are happy with the measures proposed, Worcestershire County Council’s appointed contractor will complete the design and pricing for the intended energy efficiency measures, which will be subject to Government approval through the Department of Energy Security and Net Zero (DESNZ).

Once approved, the Retrofit Coordinator will liaise with the contractor carrying out the work on your behalf and make sure the survey and installation follow the quality standards set by Government, PAS2035 and TrustMark.

After the works have been completed you will be provided with a handover pack which will include operation and maintenance manuals, guarantee and warranty information.  
 

Additional information

If the property has previously received funding under the Green Home Grants scheme, you will need to discuss your eligibility with Act on Energy.

The property must be off-gas for heating, a broken boiler does not qualify. However, there can be a gas cooker. Types of eligible heating may include; electricity, oil, coal, LPG, or solid fuels.

This scheme includes average price caps per property which will impact on the amount of work that can be carried out.

The grant will prioritise the most inefficient properties and an eligible application does not guarantee receipt of measures, which are subject to survey, availability, property suitability, access, funding caps and timescales. 

Installations may be subject to permission being granted. This may include planning permission or listed building consent.

The Home Upgrade Grant scheme (HUG2) is a partnership between Worcestershire County Council, Redditch Borough, Bromsgrove, Malvern Hills and Wychavon District Councils to deliver projects supporting sustainability and Net Zero - the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to as close to zero as possible. 

Data sharing and privacy notices

Your personal data will be shared with the Department of Energy Security and Net Zero (DESNZ), Act on Energy and Worcestershire County Council Hug 2 scheme. For details of how they use and manage your data.

View the DESNZ privacy policy

View the Act on Energy privacy policy

View the HUG2 privacy policy

Useful links

Information on HUGs can be viewed or downloaded as a leaflet, Home Upgrade Grant Scheme leaflet (PDF), and poster, Home Upgrade Grant (PDF), for additional resource and information.  Both can be downloaded and printed if needed.

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