There are lots of ways to improve the efficiency of your home, save money, keep you warm and reduce your environmental footprint. Simple Energy Advice is a government-endorsed service which gives independent and impartial advice on improving your home’s efficiency and keeping warm.
Steps you can take to improve efficiency and save money
- use a smart meter to monitor your energy usage. Studies have shown that people with smart meters use less energy
- apply for funding to improve the structure of your home, see below
- invest in draft excluders, or make your own by upcycling old clothes
- hang up thick curtains
- when switching appliances, look for those with the best energy ratings
- only fill up your kettle with the amount of water you need
- turn appliances off rather than leaving on standby
- try to keep showers to under 5 minutes
- turn off taps when not in use.
On GOV.UK, you can also get recommendations for home improvements that could:
- improve energy efficiency
- make your home cheaper to heat and keep warm.
Find out about energy efficiency improvements on GOV.UK.
Financial support for improving your home's energy efficiency or keeping warm
Kent and Medway Warm homes
Help to find a quote from a trusted contractor to install loft insulation, cavity wall insulation, external wall insulation or heating systems in your home. Some residents may be eligible for funding to help support with these home efficiency improvements.
Find out about Kent and Medway Warm Homes.
Cold Weather Payments
You may get a Cold Weather Payment if you’re receiving certain benefits or Support for Mortgage Interest. You’ll get a payment if the average temperature in your area is recorded as, or forecast to be, zero degrees celsius or below over 7 consecutive days.
Find out about Cold Weather Payments.
Energy Company Obligation (ECO)
ECO can help you pay for improvements to your home’s energy efficiency, for those living in low income and vulnerable households. You can find out if you qualify, and book into a free assessment to find out whether there will be a cost and what improvement could be offered.
Affordable Warmth Obligation
If you claim certain benefits and live in private housing, or you live in social housing, you can get help with insulation work costs or upgrading your heating.
Winter Fuel Payment
If you were born on or before 26 September 1955, and you receive a State Pension or another social security benefit, you should automatically receive Winter Fuel Payments to go towards your winter heating bills. If you do not get the State Pension or another social security benefit, you may need to make a claim. The deadline for you to make a claim for winter 2021 to 2022 is 31 March 2022.
Warm Home Discount
This is a one-off discount of £140 taken directly off your winter electricity bill between September and March. If you claim the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit or are on a low income, and your energy supplier is part of the scheme you may qualify for the Warm Home Discount.
Green Deal energy saving loan
The Green Deal helps you make energy-saving improvements to your home and to find the best way to pay for them. You may be eligible for a loan through the Green Deal, which means you will have to pay it back. You can also combine a Green Deal installation with other schemes, such as Affordable Warmth Obligation, Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) or Renewable Heat Incentives (RHI).
Financial support for renewable energy
Solar Together Kent
Solar Together Kent is a group buying scheme to get solar panels for your home or small business at a competitive price.
Ofgem Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive
The Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (Domestic RHI) is a government financial incentive to promote the use of renewable heat.
Smart Export Guarantee (SEG)
The SEG requires some electricity suppliers to pay small-scale generators for low-carbon electricity that they export back to the grid. Domestic households which have they own power generated by Solar PV, wind, micro combined heat and power (micro-CHP), hydro or anaerobic digestion (AD) could benefit. Search for the best deal.
More grants and loans
The Energy Saving Trust has more details of renewable energy grants and loans.
Share the Warmth
If you know someone who is worried about energy bills, there are some simple steps you can take to help them stay warm and save.
Find out more about Share the Warmth.
For anyone who chooses to sign up to Share the Warmth, Medway Council is not the data controller. 'The Behaviouralist' are, and their data will be held in the United States.
Southern Water: water saving home visit
Book a free water saving home visit to discover how your household could use less and save money on your bills. During your visit, Southern Water will talk about your water use and fit water-saving devices (up to £100 worth free) in your home. To book you must have both water and waste services provided by Southern Water and have a water meter.
Southern Water: free flush bag
If you're a Southern Water customer with an older, non-dual-flush toilet, you can request a free save-a-flush bag.
Water saving activities to educate the family
Looking to help teach your family about the importance of saving water? Southern Water offer a range of learning resources and games to get everyone up to speed to help reduce water usage and save money (and the planet!).
For more advice, visit these websites: