£350m Sustainable Warmth Competition opens for bids

A further £350m of funding is now available to upgrade the homes of low-income residents. Local authorities have until 4th August to submit bids to the Sustainable Warmth Competition – which combines the third round of Local Authority Delivery and the new Home Upgrade Grant scheme.

£200m is available through the Local Authority Delivery (LAD3) element. This is focused on low-income households with a gas connection. The focus is on homes with Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) ratings of E, F and G – though a limited proportion of Band D homes are permitted in bids.

A further £150m is available for the first round of the Home Upgrade Grant (HUG).  HUG is focused on low-income households whose properties lack a gas connection. Funding is available for multiple measures, with the intention of substantially improving energy performance.

The focus for both schemes is owner-occupied and privately rented homes, though a proportion of social housing (around 10%) is permitted as part of area-based schemes. Bids must be led by local authorities.  The Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund – the first wave of which is expected to be launched in the Autumn – is intended to provide funding for social sector homes.

Funding for both schemes will be allocated by the end of 2021 and projects must complete by the end of March 2023.

Commenting, NHC Chief Executive Tracy Harrison said, “It’s encouraging to see more funding coming forward for home upgrades – and to see more realistic timescales for bids and delivery. I know that NHC local authority members across the North will be keen to take advantage of this opportunity to green homes and create jobs.”

Guidance on the scheme, and details of how to apply for funding, can be accessed at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/apply-for-the-sustainable-warmth-competition