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ECO4 and the Great British Insulation Scheme

The Energy Company Obligation (ECO) is a government-run energy efficiency scheme. It is not a local authority funded scheme.

ECO places an obligation on medium and large energy suppliers to promote energy efficiency measures that improve the ability of low-income, fuel-poor and vulnerable households to heat their homes. Homes could receive discounted or free home insulation, upgraded boiler, heating system or add heating controls. It aims to improve homes via a multi-measure ‘whole house’ retrofit approach. The current initiative is ECO4, which runs from April 2022 – March 2026.

The Great British Insulation Scheme (GBIS) complements ECO4 yet unlike ECO4’s whole house approach, it will focus on single insulation measures.

Eligibility Criteria

In general properties with a low Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) of D, E, F, or G where someone in the household receives a means-tested benefit, may be eligible.

  1. Help to Heat Group (HTHG)
    1. Income based Jobseekers Allowance (JSA),
    2. Income related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA),
    3. Income Support (IS),
    4. Pension Credit Guarantee Credit (PCGC),
    5. Working Tax Credit (WTC),
    6. Child Tax Credit (CTC),
    7. Universal Credit (UC),
    8. Housing Benefit,
    9. Pension Credit Savings Credit (PCSC),
    10. Child Benefit (subject to income caps and composition).

If you are not in receipt of means-tested benefits you may qualify via Flexible Eligibility.

Flexible Eligibility (ECO4/GBIS Flex)

ECO4/GBIS Flex exists to widen the eligibility criteria. Participating local authorities publish a Statement of Intent (SOI - also known as Local Authority Flex). This enables Telford & Wrekin Council to identify households eligible for energy efficiency measures under the National ECO4/GBIS Flex criteria set by Ofgem. Download the SOI.

You may be eligible for an ECO4/GBIS Flexible Eligibility Declaration if:

  • your household has a low annual income (less than £31,000 gross)
  • someone in your household has a health condition or is of an age that puts them at greater risk of living in a cold home.

It should be noted that a declaration from Telford & Wrekin Council does not guarantee install. An install is subject to survey and funding being available. It is the responsibility of the installer to carry out the survey and obtain the funding. 

The assessment of the quality of the work is not subject to the local authority declaration and is an agreement between the applicant and the supplier / installer.

How do I know if the company is legitimate?

A lead generator may make initial contact with you by door knock, letter or leaflet. They may ask to view your current boiler and ask you questions. The lead generator is employed by the installer to find homes that are eligible for ECO4 / GBIS works. 

The lead generators and the installers do not work for Telford & Wrekin Council. The Council would advise you that if you are approached by a company that you check for proof of identification. 

The ECO / GBIS scheme is not a scam but please be scam aware.

If you are concerned or worried the offer of a new boiler seems “too good to be true” please take your time and get advice. You can contact energy.efficiency@telford.gov.uk or call Telford Energy Advice on 0800 677 1952.

Who pays for the measures?

Funding for the improvements (measures) is awarded by energy companies (suppliers) and administered by installers working on behalf of the energy companies. The installers collect resident’s details, arrange for a technical survey of the property to be carried out and arrange works for successful applicants. Please note: the final decision on whether funding is available will be made by the energy supplier and is based on the following:

  • the survey carried out and installation costs
  • the energy savings that can be achieved by having the work done
  • whether suppliers have funding available at the time of application.

Will I have to make a contribution towards the works?

In many cases no, the measures are installed free of charge. However, in some cases particularly for more expensive works, you may be required to make a financial contribution. The installer will advise you in advance of the amount and you are under no obligation to proceed with the installation at this stage.

If you would like more advice on eligibility or what the funding could cover, please contact Telford Energy Advice (TEA) on 0800 677 1952 or email tea@mea.org.uk.

TEA is your local energy advice service. It is a partnership between registered charity, Marches Energy Agency and Telford & Wrekin Council, offering free impartial advice on keeping warm and well at home.

Ofgem have also created answers to some common questions and provide additional information on their website.

ECO / GBIS is regulated by Ofgem and any concerns or complaints should be referred to Ofgem. Email: eco@ofgem.gov.uk Telephone: 020 7901 7295.

For any other enquiries please email energy.efficiency@telford.gov.uk.

EPC graph

Last updated: 21/03/2024 17:04