A PLAN by Government to provide £125m worth of cash back payments for households who take early advantage of the Green Deal does not go far enough, says a construction industry group.
The Federation of Master Builders said the move was a welcome incentive for helping the scheme get under way.
But with a cap of £1,000 cash back per household for energy efficiency improvements, this money may only cover as few as 125,000 homes – a fraction of the 14m homes the Government hopes will be upgraded under the Green Deal by 2020.
Brian Berry, chief executive of the FMB, said: “It’s encouraging to see the Government committing to new ways of incentivising the general public to take advantage of the Green Deal.
“However, there is still more work to be done to help the scheme to realise its full potential. The scale of the task of upgrading the UK’s existing buildings is immense and so the Government must pull as many levers as possible.”
He said: “Little has so far been done to encourage people to make energy efficiency improvements to their homes outside of the Green Deal.
“Ministers should take heed – the Green Deal scheme will not appeal to everyone, with some preferring to finance the work upfront.
“The Government must therefore also look at ways of encouraging these people to embark on energy efficiency improvements or else risk falling far short of its 80% carbon reduction targets by 2050.
“December’s Autumn Statement would be an ideal opportunity for the Chancellor to announce a range of fiscal incentives for energy efficiency measures.”
Mr Berry said: “In terms of the cash back scheme itself, its success will heavily depend on how the offer is promoted to consumers.
“Green Deal providers, local authorities and indeed Green Deal accredited local builders must all do their bit to help get the message out there.”