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Cost of living - help and support

Find out more about the help and support that is available to local residents to help with the rising cost of living.

Helping you with energy bills and heating your home

We have a number of schemes to help you save money on your heating bills.

Sustainable Warmth Cumbria Grants

Eligible households can access a government grant to install energy efficient products into homes across Cumbria regardless of which local authority area you may live in. This scheme is supported by all 6 District and Borough Councils in Cumbria. These improvements will make homes warmer and more comfortable whilst helping to lower energy bills and carbon emissions. The Sustainable Warmth Cumbria scheme encompasses the Green Home Grant Local Authority Delivery Programme Phase 3 (LAD3) and Home Upgrade Grants (HUG1). 

The funding aims to boost the local economy to retrofit a minimum of 1,310 owner occupied and privately tenanted homes with energy efficiency installations and low carbon heating. Projects that upgrade homes with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of E, F or G will be prioritised. Upgrades to properties with an EPC rating of D will be limited.

If you are interested in learning more, please get in contact with homelife@carlisle.gov.uk. Eligible owner-occupied households can receive grant funding between £10,000 to £25,000 depending on your property and your heating type. Owner occupiers do not need to contribute any money themselves. Landlords of privately rented homes may also be eligible for funding up to £5,000 subject to a contribution of a third of the cost of the measures.

For more information go to Carlisle City Council's website.

Scam calls

We are aware of some scam calls claiming to relate to the Sustainable Warmth grants Cumbrian councils are administering.

The scammers have asked for bank details and a contribution toward energy-saving measures.

If you are an eligible householder, no payment is required from you towards the Sustainable Warmth measures (private landlords are asked for a contribution but this would not be done over the phone.)

If you receive a call like this, please do not give your bank details. Inform the police. You can also call us on 0303 123 1702 to confirm the validity of a caller.

Funding for Energy Efficiency measures through Sustainable Warmth Cumbria 

We can help eligible low-income households in Cumbria to access a government grant to fund improved energy efficiency and carbon savings in homes thanks to £19m Sustainable Warmth funding received form the UK Government to be delivered by the Cumbria local authorities. 

The Sustainable Warmth is part of the ‘Green Homes Grants Local Authority Delivery Programme and Home Upgrade Grants’ which encompasses the Green Home Grant Local Authority Delivery Programme and Home Upgrade Grants. 

The primary purpose of the Sustainable Warmth is to raise the energy efficiency rating of low income and low Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rated households (those with E, F or G, and a limited percentage of homes with an EPC rating as D).  

The scheme aims to: 

  • Help people to lower their energy bills by increasing lower-income homes’ energy efficiency rating. 
  • Progress towards the UK’s target for carbon net zero by 2050. 
  • Support clean growth and ensure homes are thermally comfortable, efficient, and well adapted to climate change. 
  • Support economic resilience and a green recovery in response to the economic impacts of Covid-19, creating thousands of jobs. 

The funding aims to boost the local economy and retrofit a target 1,310 owner-occupied and privately tenanted homes with energy efficiency installations and low carbon heating.  

The six Cumbrian District Councils are working together to deliver energy efficiency measures to households that have household income less than £30,000 per year. 

How much help could I get?   

Eligible owner-occupied households can receive grant funding between £10,000 to £25,000 depending on your property and do not need to contribute any money themselves.  

Landlords of privately rented homes may also be eligible for funding up to £5,000 subject to a contribution of a third of the cost of the measures.  

Act quick! Contact Now! This is a time limited scheme.  

Please email homelife@carlisle.gov.uk or complete the Sustainable Warmth Application Form Sustainable Warmth Cumbria Grants (carlisle.gov.uk).

You can find out if your property has an EPC certificate here

What measures will the scheme pay for? 

(Please note that these may change depending on availability) 

  • Energy measures that are eligible under the scheme include:  
  • External Wall Insulation (EWI). 
  • Internal wall and room in roof insulation 
  • Solar PV. 
  • Loft, under-floor and Cavity Wall Insulation. 
  • Air Source Heat Pumps. 
  • Smart heating controls. 
  • Single to Double glazing. 
  • Park Home insulation. 

We will be adopting a ‘fabric first’, whole house approach to ensure maximum use of the grant funding and to increase their energy performance rating. You do not have to have an EPC to be eligible as we can do this as part of the programme.  

Cold to cosy homes scheme

More information about maintaining good health during winter and the financial help available for the over 60s, low-income families and people living with a disability can be found on  the government website. .

Helping cold homes become cosy in our district

We are supporting a free project to help residents struggling with cold and draughty houses and help cut heating costs.

Cumbria Action for Sustainability (CAfS) won funding to work with local councils and other partners to offer a Cold to Cosy Homes service, making free advice, energy-saving equipment and other practical help available to householders.

Its advisors give advice over the phone and ensure that energy saving measures are in place to reduce energy use and costs.

Residents can save money on their energy bills through simple measures like LED light bulbs, draught exclusion and radiator reflectors, all offered free of charge through the scheme.

The advisor can assess needs like draught proofing for doors and chimneys and radiator reflectors on their call and arrange for measures to be posted out or arrange for a professional installer to fit measures like loft hatch draught proofing.

There is a wide range of eligibility based on income, health and vulnerability criteria.

Cold to Cosy Homes Cumbria is delivered by CAfS, with a network of trusted Cumbrian tradespeople carrying out the more substantial energy efficiency installations. It is funded through the Energy Industry Voluntary Redress Scheme and partners include Local Energy Advice Partnership (or LEAP) and all the counties local authorities.

Andrew Northcott, energy efficiency project manager with CAfS, said: “Booking a call means you get expert advice on ways to get a warmer home, save energy at home, cut your bills and reduce your carbon footprint. Many calls can lead on to real benefits, making big improvements to warmth and energy use”

“I suggest people contact us as soon as possible to check eligibility for the free scheme and book a call.”

“By partnering with local authorities we have been able to provide many more visits across the district and focus on the areas and households that can benefit the most." Apply for a free Cold to Cosy Homes advice call by emailing the team or calling: 01768 216500.