Home energy 2024

Increasing the energy efficiency in your home will help make it warmer, cheaper to run and help lower your contribution to climate change, making  it better for our planet.

If your home is too cold, hot or damp this can harm your health and worsen any existing health conditions.

Help available

Help we can provide

We offer the following:
  • trusted information and signposting, we only link to verified sites and organisations we work with
  • help and advice, you can email us or call us on 01903 737 755 with any questions or for free in-person support 
    book a home energy visit 
  • information and support via the West Sussex Affordable Energy website which was created with other districts and borough councils across West Sussex

Getting started

Energy efficiency grants

If your home is energy inefficient it can be expensive to run, uncomfortable to live in and can make you unwell.

National and local help is available and can help fund insulation installation, upgrade heating systems and provide modern and renewable energy sources.

There is a confusing range of grants and funding schemes available, some are open to all but many are based on where you live, how much you earn, the energy efficiency rating of your home and whether you own or rent your property.

The government Help to Heat website can help you find energy grants for your home. 

Some people may be eligible for help as they receive means-tested benefits or qualify because of their age, the MoneySavingExpert website provides a breakdown of government grants for home and energy.

Renewable sources of energy

Energy gained from the sun or wind is a renewable energy source and can help you save money in the long term. There are various options available for renewable sources of energy which include the following:

Solar Panels (PV)

Solar panels are fitted onto a south-facing roof and generate electricity from the sun, they are low maintenance and on a sunny day you generate “free” electricity. Not every property is suitable for solar panels, the roof must be roughly south-facing, structurally strong enough to take the extra weight of the panels and not be obstructed by shade. The Centre for Sustainable Energy website has downloadable leaflets on solar panels PV and battery storage where you can read further information. 

Heat pumps

Heat pumps can be ground-source or air-source and are a newer type of heating, so they are not very common. They work like a fridge but in reverse, making the air warmer not cooler. They need to be planned into a property but are much more efficient in the longer term, so over time they will help reduce high energy costs. For a heat pump to work efficiently, your home must be well-insulated and have a hot water cylinder. The Centre for Sustainable Energy website has downloadable leaflets on air-source heat pumps and ground-source heat pumps where you can read further information.

Energy Performance Certificates (EPC)

The energy efficiency of homes in England is measured and published as an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC).  

All domestic and commercial buildings need an EPC when a property is built, sold or rented. The highest and most efficient rating is band  A, The lower the rating, the less energy efficient the home is. If your home is rated D, E, F, or G you may be eligible to receive government help to improve its EPC rating. 

View your home's EPC on the government website.

Maintaining a warm and comfortable living temperature in an energy-inefficient home can be difficult. Common issues for poor energy efficiency could be due to the following:
  • too little insulation in the roof, walls, and floor
  • windows that are single-glazed
  • faulty or broken boilers
  • drafts from windows, doors, chimneys and floorboards
You can find out more information on Energy Performance Certificates on the Energy Saving Trust website.
 

If you live in an energy-inefficient home

All EPC's include recommendations to improve a home’s energy efficiency and approximate cost. If you live in a lower EPC property you may be eligible to receive a grant to help pay for improvements. These grants often change so contact us for the latest information.

Scams

Scams about energy efficiency and new schemes for solar/heat pumps and boilers can come in the form of door-knocking, letters, emails, flyers and phone calls.

If an energy efficiency installer contacts you, they may promote the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) Scheme. To deliver this scheme they must be working in partnership with an energy company or be registered with the National Energy Foundation's (NEF) installer list. You can check that they are on the list by contacting the Citizens Advice West Sussex Energy Team on 0800 145 6879.

We recommend you ask the contractor which energy supplier they are working with and to double-check this by contacting the supplier directly. To find contact details of trusted energy suppliers see Ofgem's list of energy suppliers website page.

If you have been approached by installers to do work in your home or are looking for installers, we advise you to check that the company is registered with 
Trustmark (Government Endorsed Quality Scheme) before any work starts.

If you are 
looking to install renewable energy (heat pumps or solar panels), check that the company is registered with the  MCS Accreditation Scheme or if you are looking for companies to provide insulation in your home they should be registered with the National Insulation Association (NIA).  

Financial difficulties

Being warm enough should not be a luxury but if you are on a low income and experiencing financial difficulties sometimes it can feel that way.  Please see the useful advice below that may help.

Reduce your outgoings by:

  • making sure you are on the cheapest energy tariff available 
  • knowing where and when your energy is spent
  • ensuring your home is fully insulated (loft, cavity wall, walls, windows, doors and drafts excluded)
  • reducing the energy you consume see energy-saving tips from the Energy Saving Trust website

Increase money coming in by:

  • ensuring you claim all the benefits, savings and discounts you are entitled to
  • earning as much as possible using the resources you have

Maximise anything free by using:

  • local food banks and community fridges that give away food for free and prevent food waste
  • free activities that are available in your local area such as museums, libraries and events at community centres

Getting help towards paying a fuel bill is sometimes available via a one-off fuel voucher from ourselves or Arun & Chichester Citizens Advice.  If you are struggling to pay your bill, please contact us for free advice.  

Warm home discount scheme

If you are on a lower income, you could get £150 off your electricity bill each winter under the Warm Home Discount Scheme.The money is not paid to you - it’s a one-off discount on your electricity bill available  between October and March.
You may be able to get a discount on your gas bill instead if your supplier provides you with both gas and electricity. Find out more information on eligibility and how to apply by visiting the Warm Home Discount Scheme website.