When you own a home there are a whole host of bills and taxes that you have to pay. The cost of these is often dependent on a number of factors, including the size of your home, geographical location and even how eco friendly it is.
The major tax for most homeowners in the United Kingdom is localised council tax. The cost of this is usually set in stone for particular areas, with the only discounts being offered to those on welfare, the elderly and students. As this covers local services and amenities it isn’t so dependent on individual properties and their environmental credentials.
However there are a number of wider government schemes designed to encourage society to take greener steps, many of which come with grants or discounts in other areas. For instance there is something can the Warm Front grant.
This is a special scheme created to help homeowners make changes to their property in an effort improve energy efficiency. Eligible properties will be able to benefit from cavity wall insulation, draught proofing, loft insulation and a variety of other procedures designed to ensure that homes aren’t wasting energy. Funding can be up to £3,500 for those meeting the requirements and can reach £6,000 for disabled homeowners.
There are many reasons why governments are keen to help society as a whole combat wastage. The first of these is to reduce the strain on the national grid and the overall requirement for electricity, natural gas and water – all of which costs money. The second of course is ecologically motivated.
All countries have agreed emissions targets as a result of the Kyoto agreement. In order to meet these and lower the CO2 emissions that a nation generates, there has to be a proactive approach to lowering energy usage – a primary contributing factor. This is why renewable energies such as wind power, water turbines and solar are being explored and expanded right throughout the world.
The UK, like many other countries, aren’t simply worried about the method of energy production, but also how much is being used and, worse still, wasted. As such, it is important that they provide initiatives at every level for people to reduce their reliance on electricity. Therefore homeowners and even businesses of all sizes can receive grants and other benefits directly from the government to carry out essential work to improve energy efficiency in their property.
An eco friendly home therefore may not benefit from a drop in their direct tax rate, but there are additional advantages that shouldn’t be overlooked. Not least of these is the year on year savings that can be made. Electricity, gas and oil are all increasing as the cost of fossil fuels across the world continues to rise. Water too is on the increase, making monthly bills a painful pill to swallow.
However, a few small changes to your home can have a huge impact on how much you’re having to pay up for your energy. Cavity wall insulation or loft insulation are a decent example of this. If you’ve got an old property that has thin walls and very little to protect you from the elements, heating can be extremely expensive. Just by getting this insulation up, or even added double / triple glazed windows, your home will be better protected and heat won’t simply seep out.
So your taxes may not drop, but it’s still well worth investigating what help is available from governments if you are considering carrying out work to improve the eco friendly credentials of your property. This will help you get the work done for much less as well as ensuring that your annual energy bills start to fall rather than continuously rising.
Vincent Rogers is a freelance writer who writes for a number of UK businesses. For eco-friendly car insurance and to Buy Home Insurance he recommends ibuyeco.
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