Are you eligible for £400 off your next boiler?

publication date: Jan 11, 2010
 | 
author/source: Kate Faulkner, Property Expert and Author of Which? Property Books
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Are you eligible for £400 off your next boiler?


A new scrappage scheme which will rebate you £400 off the cost of fitting a new boiler was introduced by the government on 5th January 2010.

Government research claims that installing a new boiler could save you as much as £200 a year. However, applying for the rebate and securing these annual savings depends on how old your boiler is (a bit like the car scrappage scheme) so the first thing to do is check to see if you are eligible.

Check if you can get a £400 rebate off your boiler installer!
The first essential thing to know is, are you definitely in England? Unfortunately if you are in Wales or Scotland the scheme does NOT apply.

Next you need to check if your boiler is the required ‘G’ rating? This means it must be pretty old and the boiler you install must be ‘A’ rated or a renewable heating system (such as a biomass boiler or a heat pump).

How can you tell if your boiler is G-rated?
A quick initial look might help you. Does the gas boiler have a permanent pilot light or is it over 15 years old?  If it’s an oil fired boiler it needs to be a bit older, such as 25 years. These guidelines aren’t perfect though, First you need to note down the details of your boiler.

A better way of doing this though is to note down the make and model of your boiler and checking it on-line with the Building Energy Performance Assessment website.

However you need to be 100% certain, so do check it with the installer when they come round to give you quote as they are the ones that will feedback whether the boiler will qualify.

Beware of ROGUE quotes!
Sadly, when a great scheme comes along like this, the more ‘entrepreneurial’ or basically the more ‘rogue’ installers or Gas Safety Registered plumbers will just up their prices by £400!

To make sure you are not taken in by these kind of scams, you should:-

1. Ensure you have separate quotes for labour charge, broken down by the hour and materials.

2. Plumbers should be charging around £20-£40 an hour maximum and for fitting a boiler, should give you a fixed fee.

3. Boilers vary substantially in price, but fortunately you can check the cost of the parts via the internet. Kate did this on one recent quote she’d received and found the plumber was adding 30% to the cost of the materials! Needless to say she didn't choose this plumber!

4. Don’t use the government guideline of £2,500 for fitting a boiler. Boilers cost from £500 and a small flat with an easy to replace boiler should cost half that, although you may pay a little bit more in London.

5. Make sure you get three quotes and so all of them can be compared. If you ask for a breakdown of labour and materials and are not given it, then call them and ask for a breakdown. If they refuse or ‘forget’ then don’t go with them.

Finally, check how well the boiler they recommend performs and what warranties (for how long) are offered and make sure you are comparing like with like. In the house Kate bought, the people who were doing it up didn’t fix a big enough boiler to keep costs down. Fortunately Kate didn’t need a bigger boiler anyway as there are only two people living there, but a family would have really struggled to heat the home and provide hot water.

For help on choosing boilers, visit the Which website. Kate normally goes for good household names such as Potterton and Worcester Bosch which normally have good warranties on their products as well as good back up support.
 
Are you eligible for more help?
Some people, for example tenants and private homeowners who are vulnerable or over 60 may be eligible for up to £3,500 support towards a boiler and heating, so why not check with the Energy Saving Trust. Alternatively, contact us and we’ll do our best to get you the help you need.

 


Need help with a property problem? Have a question? Why not call Designs on Property on 01652 641 722 or Contact Us via email.
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