Updated: Feb 21, 2023
With the recent rise in the cost of living, many of us have done our research to see if and where we can get extra support to help with the rising prices. If this is the case for you, then you may have come across the Local Authority Flexible Eligibility (LA Flex) scheme.
But what exactly is the Flexible Eligibility scheme and how does it differ from general ECO4 funding? Keep reading to find out.
ECO4 Funding vs LA Flex
Flexible Eligibility comes under the recent ECO4 scheme for Affordable Warmth, but applying for LA Flex is not the same as applying for general ECO4 funding, and there are differences in the eligibility criteria for each.
The ECO4 scheme is aimed to help low-income households keep their house warm by providing them with affordable and efficient heating and insulation solutions. There are certain eligibility criteria that must be met in order to qualify for this support.
Firstly, you must be living in private accommodation for domestic use (either homeowners or tenants with private landlords). In order to then qualify as low-income, you must receive at least one of a selection of means tested benefits. Since ECO3, some changes have been made to the qualifying benefits in ECO4 funding, with those who claim disability benefits no longer being eligible based on these benefits alone.
LA Flex Eligibility
Unlike ECO4 funding, the flexible eligibility scheme isn’t limited to only those who claim benefits. The focus is instead on anyone who is on low income, vulnerable to living in a cold home, or living in fuel poverty. This is to ensure equal opportunity for anyone looking to improve their home’s energy efficiency.
This is done on a council by council basis; councils who participate in the scheme must outline criteria that proves residents in the local area are either living in fuel poverty, on low income or vulnerable to living in a cold home.
The Criteria in More Detail
To expand on the eligibility criteria for LA Flex, by low income households, this is not limited to those who claim benefits, but can be any household on low income – assuming this income fits within the listed bracket in the criteria set out by your local authority.
As for those vulnerable to the cold, this could mean elderly people, children or people with low immunity etc.
Regarding those living in fuel poverty, this means anyone who is unable to afford to adequately heat their home due to high fuel prices, poor energy efficiency and poor quality (private) rental housing, in addition to those on low income.
If you live in a property that is immediately adjacent to one that meets your relevant LA Flex criteria, then you are also eligible to receive funding.
Here at UK Energy Management, we work with local energy suppliers and local councils to help identify areas and households that may benefit from energy-efficient improvements and implement the LA Flex scheme.
Get in touch with a member of our team today and we will be able to advise you on your household’s eligibility for Affordable Warmth grants.