Energy Company Obligation (ECO) and ECO Flex
If you require general advice on ways to reduce your energy costs, there are a number of organisations that can provide guidance which can be found here Reducing Energy Costs
If you would like to know if you are potentially eligible for grant funding towards energy efficiency upgrades to your home, further information is provided below.
ECO4 is a Government scheme that helps lower-income households and people with certain health conditions benefit from energy efficiency retrofit upgrades to their property.
The scheme aims to improve the least energy efficient homes, helping to meet the Government's and the council's carbon reduction and fuel poverty commitments.
In order to qualify for ECO4, the householder's income or health condition
the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of their property must meet the required eligibility criteria set out below.
Household Income Eligibility
There are two key routes to income or health eligibility, as follows:
1. ECO Flex - the maximum gross household income for ECO Flex must not exceed £31,000 per annum.
For full ECO Flex eligibility details, including all qualifying health conditions and other criteria, please see the council's ECO4 Flex Statement of Intent (SOI) Statement of Intent
If you meet these criteria - and your property is eligible - please get in touch through the general enquiries link below;
2. ECO - households in receipt of one or more of the following benefits may qualify:
- Income based Jobseekers allowance
- Income related Employment & Support Allowance
- Income Support
- Pension Credit (Guarantee Credit and / or Savings Credit)
- Child Benefit (subject to an Income Cap)
- Housing Benefit
- Working Tax Credit
- Child Tax Credit
- Universal Credit
If you are in receipt of one of the above ECO qualifying benefits - and your property is eligible (see below) - you may be able to qualify for immediate support by contacting your energy supplier here.
The least energy efficient homes have EPC ratings of E, F,or G and these homes are the priority for ECO4.
At the discretion of the Obligated Energy Supplier, some D rated properties may also qualify. Please note A-C rated properties do not qualify for ECO4.
Current ECO4 Flex situation(from January 2023)
Please note funding support for replacement condensing combi gas boilers is now extremely limited, and if available, may be allocated at the sole discretion of the ECO-Obligated Energy Supplier.
The council has published its ECO Flex eligibility criteria in advance of appointing its preferred obligated supplier(s). This is to ensure immediate advice is available for emergency ECO4 Flex cases.
Where ECO Flex qualifying households are without any heating and hot water and in need of urgent support, they should contact Utilita Energy for advice.
Tel: 0196 2679048
Under new ECO4 regulations please note some households with broken gas boilers may be offered an air source heat pump as an alternative low carbon solution.
The council plans to launch its ECO Flex scheme on Monday 8 May 2023. If you are interested in insulation, air source heat pumps and similar heating upgrades please send an email entitled "ECO4 Waiting List Request" to SCCECO.Flex@Sunderland.gov.uk stating your name, address and telephone number and a brief description of your energy efficiency enquiry.
The council will place your email on the ECO Flex waiting list. When an ECO Flex delivery partner is appointed they will contact you direct and advise of any assistance available. Please note, the council will not be able to contact you directly before we have appointed Obligated Energy Supplier(s) to deliver the scheme in the city.
There are also a number of organisations that provide information and advice to help you reduce your energy costs and tackle fuel bills.