A grant or loan may be available to owner-occupiers to pay for repairs, improvements, energy efficiency works or works to improve home safety for the over 60s. Eligibility is dependent on the age of the applicant and receipt of certain income or related benefits.
All of these grants and loans are discretionary and enquiries will be prioritised according to the urgency of the works and the applicant's individual circumstances.
The council has limited funds available for this type of work. Therefore, the availability of these grants/loans may be withdrawn at any time.
A brief outline of the help that is available is given below. For more detailed information, see the Council's Private Sector Housing Renewal Policy or contact Environmental Health.
Home improvement loans
A Home Improvement Loan may be offered in the following cases:
- For works to remove a significant risk to the health, safety or welfare of the occupants (a Category 1 hazard under the Housing Act 2004)
- To adapt a property for a disabled person (in certain limited circumstances where a disabled facilities grant is not available)
- To bring a long-term vacant property back into use.
The Decent Homes standard requires that a property:
- meets the statutory minimum standard for housing
- is in a reasonable state of repair
- has reasonably modern facilities and services
- provides a reasonable degree of thermal comfort
To qualify, you must have owned and lived in your home for at least 1 year and be in receipt of a qualifying means-tested benefit.
Minor works grants
A grant of up to £1,000 may be available to owner occupiers who are in receipt of a qualifying means-tested benefit to help with small repairs and improvements. We cannot help with works of routine maintenance e.g. replacing tap washers, ball valves, drain clearance etc. However, the Handyperson scheme may be able to help with these works.
You must repay the grant in full if you move within 10 years.
Home insulation grants
Currently the Council does not offer Home Insulation Grants. However, assistance for loft and cavity wall insulation is available through the Herts & Essex Energy Partnership (HEEP).
Disabled Facilities grant for a private property
The Disabled Facilities grant scheme provides financial assistance towards the cost of essential adaptation work to make a house fit for a disabled person.
Home safety grants
Currently the Council does not offer Home Safety Grants.
Currently the Council does not offer Relocation Grants.
For further information you can contact Environmental Health and see the Housing Grants and Loans frequently asked questions.