There’s such a thing as being too successful. The government’s insulation subsidy has been such a runaway success that ministers are now putting its costs under the microscope.
Since its introduction after an agreement between the Greens and the National Party in 2008, the insulation grant has seen over 200,000 Kiwi homes upgraded at a cost of $347 million dollars. On the other side of the equation, a study by the Reserve Bank showed that the country has gained $5 in benefits for every $1 spent on the scheme, largely as a result of falling healthcare costs.
While everyone agrees that upgrading below-par homes with modern insulation is a worthwhile cause, the government’s financial accounts are under pressure. Finance Minister Bill English is going through every item on the government’s books with a fine-toothed comb. The hugely popular insulation grant could soon be a victim of its own success.
Energy Minister Simon Bridges has confirmed that the grant is under scrutiny. In a recent statement he said that the government was looking at “transitioning it to a more targeted programme towards households in need.” The Warm Up New Zealand: Heat Smart grant (also known as an Energywise grant or EECA subsidy) can make a real difference to the cost of installing ceiling and underfloor insulation. It can cover a third of the costs of installing your insulation, up to a maximum of $1,300.
A healthy contribution to your insulation costs
Currently this money is available to any New Zealand homeowner with a property built before 2000, subject to a home visit and report by a registered insulation assessor. The insulation must then be installed by an approved installer and inspected afterwards to ensure it meets the required standards. The insulation subsidy simply comes off the installer’s bill. You can’t put a price on good health, so money spent creating a healthy home should be a priority for every family. At the same time, it makes sense to take advantage of government support to achieve this objective. The Beehive is looking hard at all the items on its spending list with the aim of getting the budget back in surplus by 2015. The Warm Up New Zealand: Heat Smart grant is an obvious target.
Don’t miss out!
If you want to be sure of a financial contribution up to $1,300, it would pay to talk to a reputable insulation installer such as Harrisons Home Energy Solutions. Do it today.
They’ll help you get whatever money is available – as long as it’s available.