The Better Energy Warmer Homes Scheme is funded by my Department and administered by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI). The Scheme delivers a range of energy efficiency measures free of charge to low income households vulnerable to energy poverty, who meet the defined eligibility criteria.
The processing of applications under the Warmer Homes Scheme is an operational matter for SEAI and I, as Minister, have no role in such matters. However, officials from my Department have contacted the SEAI in relation to the application referenced by the Deputy.
I have been informed that the applicant applied for works under the Scheme in October 2018 and had a survey carried out in January 2019. SEAI have indicated that it is intended to assign a contractor to this home in January 2020, who will contact the homeowner directly to schedule works.
Since the expansion of the scheme in 2018 to include ‘deeper’ and more expensive upgrade measures such as external wall insulation and internal wall insulation, demand for the scheme is very high. SEAI advise that due to this demand, the average wait time for applicants, between making an application and being allocated to a contractor, can be approximately 18 months.
A budget of €52.8 million has been allocated to the Scheme for next year. This represents the biggest ever budget for the Warmer Homes Scheme – more than double the initial allocation for 2019.