Energy Company Obligation (ECO4 Flex)
Free energy efficiency measures for eligible households
What is ECO4 Flex?
The Energy Company Obligation (ECO) is a government energy efficiency scheme. It aims to reduce carbon emissions and tackle fuel poverty by improving the energy efficiency of homes occupied by residents on low incomes who are vulnerable to the cold, and/or live in homes that are hard to heat, free of charge. ECO is funded by large private energy suppliers and delivered by private PAS2030/2035 installers who are Trustmark accredited.
ECO Flex is the route through which local authorities can verify the eligibility of households under the criteria set out below. We are not involved or responsible for issuing the funding, appointing contractors or installing the works.
What improvements could I qualify for?
Your chosen installer(s) will carry out a survey and identify improvements suitable for your property.
If eligible, you could qualify for any of the improvements listed below. This is not the full list and other improvements might be available depending on the installer.
- Insulation (for example: loft, pitched roof, flat roof, room in roof, cavity wall, external wall, internal wall, floor)
- Low carbon heating (for example: Air source heat pumps, Ground source heat pumps, energy efficient boilers, heating controls, electric storage heaters)
- Solar PV panels
- High performance external doors
- Window glazing
- Draught proofing
Am I eligible?
ECO Funding is only available for private owner occupiers and private rented tenants whose energy performance rating is a D, E, F or G. You can check your rating on the government website.
If you receive one or more of the following benefits, you can apply directly through an energy supplier:
- Child Benefit
- Pension Guarantee Credit
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
- Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA)
- Income Support
- Tax Credits (Child Tax Credits and Working Tax Credits)
- Universal Credit
- Housing benefit
- Pension credit saving credit
Households are also eligible under additional criteria. These are set out in our statements of intent. Currently there are 3 versions, as listed below.
- Statement of Intent version 1 [PDF, 0.2MB]
- Statement of Intent Version 2 [PDF, 0.2MB]
- Statement of Intent Version 3 [PDF, 0.2MB]
We must verify these through evidence provided by the householder that they meet the specified criteria. We provide verification of eligibility declarations to private installation companies working in our area.
We are also working in partnership with LEAP to provide a free energy and money saving advice service, including referrals for ECO funded home improvements, for eligible households.
How do I find an installer?
You are responsible for choosing an installer and carrying out checks to ensure you are satisfied with the installation company. Your chosen installer must be TrustMark registered.
You can find a registered installer on the TrustMark website.
The installer working on behalf of the energy supplier will decide what level of support and type of improvements you could receive.
We recommend that you request to see their company ID, plus their name and contact details when they visit your property. This will help you to check on the status of your application after they leave. We will not have access to this information.
What else will I need to check?
It is your responsibility to carry out the following checks:
- Will you need planning permission or building regulations approval? Certain types of insulation such as external wall insulation might need approval and as a homeowner/landlord it will be your responsibility to apply for this
- Find out if the installer is a member of a competent person scheme related to electrics or insulation work, like the MCS, NICEIC, CIGA or Stroma schemes. If they are, then they will be able to self-certify their work, rather than needing to get building regulations approval from us
- Make sure they are Gas Safe registered. By law all engineers installing gas boilers must be on the Gas Safe Register.
- Check if they provide any guarantees or warranties on the installation, and make sure you are provided with these and any other associated paperwork upon completion of an install
What if I am not happy with the installation?
Initial complaints about an installation should firstly be made to the company who installed the measure. If problems persist, you should contact Citizens Advice Consumer Services for free impartial advice.
Who administers ECO?
Ofgem administers the scheme on behalf of the Government Department for Energy, Business & Industrial Strategy (BEIS). Ofgem’s duties include allocating targets to obligated suppliers, monitoring supplier progress and deciding whether they’ve achieved their obligations. Ofgem also is in charge of: reporting to the Secretary of State, auditing, ensuring compliance and preventing and detecting fraud. BEIS sets the overall policy for the ECO scheme.
The ECO4 Flex Process
Please note that we do not oversee ECO, endorse any installation companies or require further vetting of installation or lead generation companies
- Householders can choose any TrustMark registered installer. A chosen installer will ask initial questions to confirm the likelihood of qualification and then arrange a home visit.
- A home visit is conducted by the installer or their representative. If the property is suitable for upgrades, an application form is fully completed and signed by the householder.
- Evidence supporting the application is gathered together, as outlined in the application form.
- The application form and evidence (PDF's/photos taken on mobile phone or tablet) are submitted by the installer/lead generator to us by email. Evidence is returned to applicant by the installer.
- Householder is supplied with the installer's contact details, should they wish to enquire about their application status later. (We cannot provide updates on applications).
- We assess the application and evidence. If applicant qualifies, a completed LA Declaration is signed and returned to the Installer.
- Installation company carry out installation(s) - leaving resident with contact details and any warranties/guarantees, as required.
- If householder is not satisfied with an installation, they should contact the installation company in the first instance. If issues are not resolved, they should seek advice from Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline. (We cannot assist in complaint resolutions regarding ECO funded installations).
Information for installers
Are you interested in providing energy efficiency improvements under this scheme?