The legal framework for the Green Deal is now in place and the key legislation commenced on 1 October 2012.
DECC says this regulatory green light signals to industry that the market can now get started.
In practice this means Green Deal providers, assessors and installers can start to become authorised, and display the Green Deal Quality Mark, and put in place their systems for delivering assessments to consumers – although consumers won’t be able to sign up to a Green Deal finance plan until 28th January 2013.
DECC also issued a Green Deal Code of Practice on 27 September 2012 and here's a link to the DECC industry page.
The idea is you install energy efficient technology in your home or business with no up-front outlay, paying back the cost through your energy bill over time.
Plans must adhere to the so-called “golden rule”, which says the expected financial savings must be equal to or greater than the costs attached to the energy bill (although that can’t be guaranteed).
Will it work?
There’s scepticism voiced by a Surrey trading standards expert in this piece in the Guardian and another article says the Green Deal is being spurned by major retailers amid criticism it's too complex and may disadvantage the poor.
No two households – or businesses – are the same.
The trading standards expert says:
“There are complicated formulas to predict what savings can be made, but there are so many variables – plus continual energy price changes – that it's almost impossible to work out.”
He also says:
“I want to see some independent inspection of work that has been carried out to ensure it has been done properly and that the expected energy savings have a greater chance of being realised; rogue operators need to be pinpointed and eliminated very quickly.”
Is the idea that green deal plans will be passed on to future buyers realistic?
Or is it more likely, as suggested in the Guardian, that a prospective buyer will ask the seller to pay off the plan in full before they buy the property?
Like the writer of that piece, I know what I’d do.
Meanwhile, the industry is angry at the subdued nature of the launch of this supposed flagship energy programme, reports greenwise (the energy minister’s on a trade mission to Africa this week apparently).
We’ll see - I’m sure there’ll be a plethora of doorstep selling to look forward to before long – get your “no cold callers” stickers at the ready...
Photo by HowardLake via flickr