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Green Building Bible, Fourth Edition
Green Building Bible, fourth edition (both books)
These two books are the perfect starting place to help you get to grips with one of the most vitally important aspects of our society - our homes and living environment.

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    • CommentAuthorowlman
    • CommentTimeMar 24th 2022 edited
     
    One of my big cribs regarding the latest rush to convert homes to Air to water, ( A/W ), heat pump usage was the seeming exclusion of Air to Air, ( A/A ), in the overall strategy.
    The heat pump industry itself was perhaps somewhat to blame in that it continued to label A/A as Aircon, a more canny approach from this industry may have been to label them as " air source reverse cycle heat pump " which may have got them included in the initial heat pump plan.

    I came across this recently from BESA :-

    APPLICABLE VAT RATE ON HEAT PUMP INSTALLATIONS
    The purpose of this technical bulletin is to advise members of changes to the VAT rate
    announced in the Chancellor’s Spring Statement of 23rd March 2022.
    1. BACKGROUND
    In July 2014 HMRC introduced a scheme for applying a reduced rate of VAT of 5% on energy
    saving materials and heating equipment. It followed on from the enhanced capital allowances list of
    previous years whereby heating equipment which featured on that list could have a 5% VAT rate
    applied when the products were installed in domestic situations. The move was designed to
    encourage the uptake of energy efficient heating systems such as heat pumps in retrofit
    applications.
    In October 2019 the rules were subtly changed to incorporate a “60% test” that must be applied for
    the reduced rate to be used if certain social policy conditions are not met.
    The Spring Statement of 23rd March 2022 has reversed that 2019 ruling as from 1st April 2022
    meaning that the social conditions and 60% requirements no longer apply at all. This has been
    implemented to incentivize homeowners to install energy saving heating materials as part of a
    wider package of Government measures targeted at improving energy efficiency and driving the
    decarbonisation of heat agenda.
    The zero rating applies to installations of these products and therefore cannot be applied by sellers
    of equipment only.
    At this moment in time the zero rating can only be used by contractors in Great Britain as the EU
    need to agree to this move for Northern Ireland. HMRC assured us that they are working on this
    being a UK wide initiative as soon as possible.

    2. VAT NOTICE 708/6 – CONFUSION OVER DEFINTIONS1
    In February 2021 an amendment to clause 2.17 Air source heat pumps was made to correct a
    mistake where air source heat pumps of the split air conditioning type had been specifically ruled
    out from the scheme. There remained a large element of confusion across the sector, however,
    and the issue persisted. After extensive talks between the BESA and HMRC the guidance has
    been updated to clarify the applicability rules and allow air source reverse cycle heat pump air
    conditioners in the same way it applies for monoblock heat pumps.
    •  
      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTimeMar 24th 2022
     
    Hmm, so apart from the requirement to use a contractor to install it we're home free? I can install A/A VAT free from April? I'll have to look at the piggy bank!
  1.  
    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/changes-to-the-vat-treatment-of-the-installation-of-energy-saving-materials-in-in-great-britain/the-value-added-tax-installation-of-energy-saving-materials-order-2022

    Seems like great news! The "60% rule" has been ditched, and VAT cut to zero on all kinds of stuff like insulation and solar panels and ASHP/GSHPs.

    Edit: surprised they haven't made more of a show about this - people have been complaining for years about the VAT disparity between new-build vs retrofitting and this has gone a long way toward fixing that. As before, if you are adding insulation you can claim 0% VAT on all sorts of incidental stuff like plasterboarding and redecorating. Only regret is it doesn't apply to DIY.
    • CommentAuthorMike1
    • CommentTimeMar 25th 2022 edited
     
    Posted By: WillInAberdeenVAT cut to zero on all kinds of stuff like insulation and solar panels and ASHP/GSHPs
    Yes, a step forwards for those who can afford to take action. In many cases still cheaper to pay the tax and DIY it, for those who can.

    But it still requires a proper grant scheme for those who can't afford the work. The new (2021+) French scheme would be good. A single-household earning < €20 593 gets up to 90% of the cost paid by the Government (with a sliding scale to 40% for middle incomes) on pretty much anything - energy audits, insulation, heat pumps, high-efficiency boilers, PV, MVHR, district heating connections, double glazing, car chargers - capped at €20,000 every 5 years. With applications turned around within 2 weeks and up-front payments for those on the lowest incomes. Plus the option of a 20-year zero-interest loan up to €50,000, subject to the work undertaken.
    • CommentAuthorTimSmall
    • CommentTimeMar 25th 2022 edited
     
    [deleted]
    •  
      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTimeMar 25th 2022
     
    Posted By: Mike1But it still requires a proper grant scheme for those who can't afford the work. The new (2021+) French scheme would be good. A single-household earning < €20 593 gets up to 90% of the cost paid by the Government (with a sliding scale to 40% for middle incomes) on pretty much anything - energy audits, insulation, heat pumps, high-efficiency boilers, PV, MVHR, district heating connections, double glazing, car chargers - capped at €20,000 every 5 years. With applications turned around within 2 weeks and up-front payments for those on the lowest incomes. Plus the option of a 20-year zero-interest loan up to €50,000, subject to the work undertaken.
    Is there an easy to read explanation of how it is all financed anywhere? I'm interested to know how places fund schemes like this when we always seem to tangle ourselves up in knots.
    • CommentAuthorowlman
    • CommentTimeMar 26th 2022 edited
     
    Posted By: djh
    ............ I'm interested to know how places fund schemes like this when we always seem to tangle ourselves up in knots.




    +1 Especially when you look at countries with broadly similar GDPs. You have to ask yourself where do the major financial differences lay.
    • CommentAuthorMike1
    • CommentTimeMar 27th 2022 edited
     
    Posted By: djhIs there an easy to read explanation of how it is all financed anywhere? I'm interested to know how places fund schemes like this when we always seem to tangle ourselves up in knots.
    The funding body is the 'Agence nationale de l'habitat' (National Housing Agency) - with a status roughly similar to an Executive Agency in the UK - dedicated to implementing policies to improve privately-owned housing, whether owner-occupied or rented. Its origins can be traced back to post-war reconstruction.

    There's a leaflet (in French, but lots of graphics) on expenditure here: https://www.anah.fr/fileadmin/anah/Mediatheque/Publications/Les_chiffres_cles/ChiffresCles2021.pdf (short version version, in 2021: 3.11B€ spent on 751,646 renovations)

    And a page on funding sources here: https://www.anah.fr/qui-sommes-nous/budget-2021/
    (short version, in 2021: direct Government funding + income from the auction of carbon credits + funding from energy suppliers + income from a tax on vacant housing + various other minor sources). Though not clear how they covered their significant overspend - more from the Government, perhaps.
    • CommentAuthorneelpeel
    • CommentTimeMar 28th 2022
     
    So I assume it's therefore likely that A/A pumps will also be covered in the Clean Heat Grant (RHI scheme replacement - and also called the 'Boiler Upgrade Scheme') from April onwards?

    I thought this was going to be perfect timing for me then I read that this scheme will not be available in Scotland. Humff. Good for some though...

    https://www.gov.uk/guidance/check-if-you-may-be-eligible-for-the-boiler-upgrade-scheme-from-april-2022
  2.  
    Fit like the day,

    https://www.homeenergyscotland.org/find-funding-grants-and-loans/interest-free-loans/detail/

    Seems that Scot gov will lend up to £10k for heatpumps and then convert 75% of that to a grant. Not sure about A-A.

    There is actually a lot of funding available in UK through random council grants, gov schemes, energy company obligations etc but it's difficult to find info in one place of what's available.
    • CommentAuthorneelpeel
    • CommentTimeMar 29th 2022
     
    Posted By: WillInAberdeenFit like the day,

    https://www.homeenergyscotland.org/find-funding-grants-and-loans/interest-free-loans/detail/" rel="nofollow" >https://www.homeenergyscotland.org/find-funding-grants-and-loans/interest-free-loans/detail/

    Seems that Scot gov will lend up to £10k for heatpumps and then convert 75% of that to a grant. Not sure about A-A.

    There is actually a lot of funding available in UK through random council grants, gov schemes, energy company obligations etc but it's difficult to find info in one place of what's available.


    Nae bad manny. Thanks for the heads up. I spotted that before but saw the word 'Loan' and promptly ignored!
    Unfortunately that homeenergyscotland website suggests No to A/A...
    " - Heat pumps (either air source to water, ground source to water, water source to water or hybrid air source to water): £10,000 (£2,500 loan plus up to £7,500 cashback)"

    Maybe it will be updated in line with the HMRC guidelines at some point.
    • CommentAuthorminisaurus
    • CommentTimeApr 10th 2022
     
    <blockquote><cite>Posted By: djh</cite>... I'm interested to know how places fund schemes like this when we always seem to tangle ourselves up in knots.</blockquote>
    The UK (especially English government) cannot do effective bureaucracy. I've lived in UK, France, now Sweden. UK public admin always overcomplicates everything - Ukraine refugees the latest sorry example - plus UK govt always keeps most of the money central, where it gets spent on building and dismantling bureaucratic systems.
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