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Cost of living help and guidance

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6 October 2022

Energy matters, financial support and support for your home

Improving Homes and Reducing Costs


With costs rising, now is the time to manage your costs and reduce your fuel bills, so together with Citizens Advice and Tamar Energy Community, we are here to help you with information and advice.

We have set out a range of schemes and initiatives to help you manage your energy use better.

What Grants and Schemes are Available?

  • The Energy Company Obligation, this is where we facilitate grants from big energy companies to install a variety of measures , e.g. all types of insulation through to heating upgrades in eligible households.
  • Energy Advice is also available. We work closely with Tamar Energy Communities and Citizen Advice, to offer free and impartial, independent advice from local advisers on how to reduce energy bills and help with heating to struggling households.
  • The Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) are what landlords are expected to comply with. Working with Tamar Energy Community, we identify rental properties that do not comply with the minimum energy efficiency standards. All rental properties must be rated E and above unless properly exempted. The landlords are given initial advice on how to get compliance with the regulations. Formal action will be taken against non-compliant landlords who are not willing to undertake the necessary work.
  • Energy Efficiency Loans can be offered by us for energy efficiency measures. This is through the Council’s loan partner, Lendology.  They can also help households on oil, LPG and solid fuel to bulk-buy fuel with a 0% loan.
  • Under the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) Help to Heat local flexible eligibility, energy suppliers and installers will be able to offer grants, using our eligibility criteria. This allows them to install fully funded or subsidised energy saving measures for households, which have been declared eligible. We do not provide the funding; it is provided by the Energy Companies.
  • All of the schemes and initiatives listed are subject to terms and conditions. In most cases, this would mean a gross household income of less than £31,000.

Installation Companies


We do not recommend any particular installation company and you are advised that eligibility under the scheme may not necessarily result in a full grant.

A number of installers have signed our Code of Practice to say how they will engage with house owners. This would only be in writing (or through social media).

If in doubt, you can contact the Council at eco@swdevon.gov.uk to verify the installer is genuine.

There have some been worrying reports of people posing as Council representatives knocking on doors and offering home energy improvements.

This is NOT something that the Council would do. If any company cold calls at your door, the Council and Citizens Advice strongly advise, you do NOT engage with them or allow them into your home.

Door salesmen

Trusted Sources

Citizens Advice

Citizens Advice can help householders understand:

  • how to efficiently use their heating and hot water systems
  • Look at fuel bills to see if you can save money by switching tariff
  • deal with energy supplier issues, including billing and meter problems
  • help liaise with social housing landlords to make energy efficiency improvements.

They are advising all their clients to switch to a Smart meter to help manage energy consumption. Speak to your supplier to find out whether you are eligible.

Tamar Energy Community is holding two events if people would like to come along and get some advice.:

  • Okehampton Energy and Retrofit Fair - Sat 22 Oct
  • Tamar Energy Fest on Sat 12 Nov

Drop in to have a chat about preparing your home for the future. Click on the link below for more information.

tamar energy
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A Citizens Advice Case Study

Couple heating by fire with dog

A client came to us as they were struggling to afford their bills, in particular their energy costs. On cold days, they were staying in their shed as this was cheaper than heating their house. 93% of their Universal Credit each month was being spent on fuel.

We were able to provide the client with £98 worth of fuel vouchers; this was enough for them to feel confident in staying in the house for the colder days and not sit in the shed. We also supported them to apply for Limited Capability for Work-Related Activity (LCWRA), which increased their monthly income by £354.28 a month.

The client no longer has to stay in their shed when it is cold and can go inside. They expressed that they are feeling much better about things going forward.

“I am so grateful for the help you have given me today.”

Citizens Advice 

Find Out More from the Council

If you would like to know more about the schemes or make an enquiry to us, click on the link below to find out more.

If you would like to know more about the schemes or make an enquiry to us, find out more using the button below.

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