Landlords With DSS Tenants Can Receive a Grant To Make Property More Energy Efficient

I’m actually quite pissed off that I only recently found out about this scheme. Of course, I can’t apply for it now because I don’t currently have any DSS Tenants or any tenants in receivership of any qualified benefits. However, I’m tempted to get DSS tenants when I have an available property just to benefit from this scheme.

The “Warm Front” government-funded scheme

“Warm Front” is a government-funded scheme which provides grants to make a home warmer, healthier and more energy-efficient.

What does the Warm Front Grant provide?

The grant provides energy-efficiency advice and a package of insulation and heating improvements tailored to each property up to the value of £3,500. Some homes that need oil central heating may receive a grant of up to £6,000.

The improvements include the following:

  • Loft insulation
  • Draughtproofing
  • Cavity-wall insulation
  • Hot-water-tank insulation
  • Gas, electric or oil central heating
  • Glass-fronted fire

Do I qualify?

Warm Front Grants are for people who own their home or rent it from a private landlord AND are on certain benefits. One of the benefits listed is “Housing Benefit”, which is why this is particularly useful for landlords with DSS tenants.

Tenants receiving any of the following benefits can also apply for the grant:

  • Working Tax Credit – with an income of less than £16,040 and which must include a disability element
  • Child Tax Credit – with an income of less than £16,040
  • Attendance Allowance
  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Income Support – which must include a disability premium
  • Housing Benefit – which must include a disability premium
  • Council Tax Benefit – which must include a disability premium
  • War Disablement Pension – which must include mobility supplement or Constant Attendance Allowance
  • Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit – which must include Constant Attendance Allowance

How to apply for a grant

This is the important part. The landlord isn’t directly entitled to the grant, it’s the tenant who is entitled. So it’s in the best interest of both tenant and landlord to work together, so they can both benefit from this grant.

Improving efficiency of a property will benefit both tenant and landlord because it will help keep utility bills down for the tenant and increase the value of the property for the landlord, and make it more desirable. It’s a win/win situation for everyone involved.

If you think your tenant is entitled to receiving this grant, they can find out more information on the Warn Front Website.

There is limited funding

The Warm Front scheme is funded by Government and has a set budget for this year. The budget is reached pretty quickly as it’s highly in demand, so it’s not always available. But it’s always worth applying and also investigating when the budget is reset, so you know when to apply. There really is nothing to lose.

The scheme is legit, and open for abuse (kinda)

I actually found out about this scheme from a “random”, who had actually benefited from the scheme. However, she did it in a way which could be deemed as ethically grey by some people. You be the judge.

What she did was purchase a house which she intended to live in. However, before moving into the property, she rented it out for 12 months to a DSS tenant. While the tenant was in there, she asked the tenant to apply for the grant. The tenant received the grant, and consequently had a new heating system installed, because the previous boiler was old and inefficient.

In the mean time, the landlord was living with her parents.

I’m not entirely sure how easy it is to get away with practices like that, but it’s just an indication that the grant is very real and can be seen as an extremely good perk for landlords that have DSS tenants.

Has anyone heard of this scheme and/or taken advantage of it?

Just wondering if any landlord of tenant has heard of the scheme and/or applied for the grant? Let me know about your experience, innit!

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27 Comments- Join The Conversation...

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benji 2nd January, 2011 @ 12:08

Are you seriously saying your friend went to all this trouble, of installing a DSS tenant, with all the possible nightmare scenarios, just to be in with a chance of a grant of up to £3500?

Isn't there a 2 year clawback clause anyway preventing rent increases or such schemes?

Are you making up imaginary friends?

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The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 2nd January, 2011 @ 12:56

I have no idea of the terms and conditions of the scheme.

But this person genuinely said that's what they did.

I have no reason to lie about it...

But in terms of money, it does make sense. If the property can achieve £500 pcm, £3500 is the equivalent of 7 months rent. So, "all that trouble" seems worthwhile in that respect. She wasn't losing anything out of it, and in the mean time a tenant was paying her mortgage.

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Smithy 3rd January, 2011 @ 12:13

I helped my DSS tenant apply under the previous scheme. She had full gas central heating installed, about 5 years ago iirc. We did have to wait some months after applying because there was a waiting list. All very successful. My only comment is that the CORGI* engineer who does the annual inspection and servicing said that the boiler is a particularly cheap model which now needs replacing. Only to be expected I suppose. I'm not complaining though!
* or whatever they call it now.

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Simon Pickard 3rd January, 2011 @ 19:53

HI there,

I've just gone through this with my tenant, worked really well and she's really happy.

Only condition there is from what I can tell is that you can't sell your home within 5 years. If you do you have to pay back the grant, not sure how the hell they would know this, but that's what it says on the contract.

Regards,
Simon

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The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 4th January, 2011 @ 09:27

Hi Guys,

Many thanks for sharing your experiences with this scheme. It's reassuring to know landlords have successfully gained from this scheme. I hope other landlords also take advantage of this useful opportunity!!!

Regards

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benji 4th January, 2011 @ 19:56

Hiya!
Your friend is pulling your chain mate.

1. Its highly unlikely she got the full £3500. More likely she got some energy saving light bulbs and some leaflets (at least she could burn the leaflets to keep warm)

2. The scheme for this financial year stopped months ago. Chances of it continuing look slimmer by the day.

3. Youd be bonkers to take on a DSS tenant (DSS was changed long ago btw) in preference to one of the other genuinely qualifying persons, if you were scamming it purely for this reason.

4. The old boiler(I'm not refering to your friend here!) would, in all probability, have clanked on for many years to come.

5..............

I could go on, but can't be arsed. The point is, as youve said,
"I have no idea about terms & cons".
No, you dont. Please stop making half arsed articles about things you know little about and go back to the funny stuff. Youre good at that, honestly.

p.s the previous other comments prob arent talking about the "warm front" scheme.

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The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 4th January, 2011 @ 22:23

Ironic that you say I should stick to issues I know about. When most of your points were based on assumptions, hence why you used the words "unlikely" and "probably". Pot/kettle/black.

You're just assuming all kinds of crap. Ultimately, you actually have no idea about the following:

1) what my friend qualified for, and how.
2) which scheme the above commenter's used
3) the condition of the old boiler (which is actually irrelevant to the scheme)

Moreover, I mentioned the budget runs out, but it will be renewed. Also, it's actually more appealing to take on DSS tenants than previously because Landlords are now entitled to receive benefits directly.

This article wasn't intended to be a thorough coverage of the issue. I was merely making other landlords aware of the scheme (if they didn't already know about it). If it seems appealing, they can click the relevant link and investigate further. Go figure.

I could actually go on and on about how you're being a presumptuous idiot, who actually knows less than I do, but I can't be arsed...

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Simon Pickard 4th January, 2011 @ 22:54

benji you're an idiot.

You have no idea what you're talking about and still feel the need to offer "advice".

For your information, yes we did get some new light bulbs. As well as our central heating system totally renewed (at a cost of 2500 pounds). Our boiler is good quality, but they serviced it and replaced any worn parts, plus we got around 500 pounds of insulation installed.

Also I'd like to point out that not all DSS tenants are bad news and it's wrong to say so. I've had a tenant on benefits in my house for over 2 years now. She's paid on time every month, and the house looks better now than it did when she moved in.

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Smithy 4th January, 2011 @ 23:11

I can assure you that the work done on my property was under the Warm Front Scheme. This was done at the end of 2006. It consisted of draughtproofing, installation of a complete gas central heating system, loft insulation and low energy bulbs. The grant was £2,700, which was the maximum at the time. The only restriction was that I was unable to increase the rent for 24 months after the equipment was installed. Please do not suggest in any way that I do not know what I am talking about - I would not post anything about which I was not sure.

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benji 5th January, 2011 @ 00:45

Blimey! it's like London Busses round here!
No posts for days then 3 turn up at once!
I thought we'd been through the imaginary friend thing.

Seriously though, no one minds a bit of poetic licence as long as its funny. You normally are!
Please go back to the humourous experiences, youre good at it.

Thanks for the presumptuous idiot bit, made my night, I thought I was on Downton Abbey.

p.s its not called DSS anymore.

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The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 5th January, 2011 @ 07:41

Yeah, I know it's not called DSS anymore. I already mentioned in a previous post that DSS is now called DWP (Department for Work and Pensions). However, people are more familiar with "DSS"...

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sharonr 24th August, 2011 @ 17:48

i have waited a year to get my new boiler and finally had it fitted last week, i take offence to the comment about housing benefit tenants, iam on housing benefit, i work and do more to look after this house than my landlady, anyway, rant over, going back to the subject, i had the work they have done inspected today and was told a landlord cannot increase the rent for 5 years, ive been trying to find out some information about this without much luck.

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zumba 123 29th October, 2011 @ 15:11

i get this grant but my landlord would not give pemision so i sit is a freezing house with no insulation he said no one was going in his loft he lives next door, he as also told me i can not go in the loft wonder why

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Armin 9th November, 2011 @ 11:16

From:

http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/Environmentandgreenerliving/Energyandwatersaving/Energygrants/DG_10018661

"Eligible customers are all those awarded:

Pension Credit or;
income-related Employment and Support Allowance that includes a work-related activity or support component (this includes contribution based ESA customers in the support group who get an income related top up because they automatically qualify for the enhanced disability premium payable with income related ESA)

And those awarded:

Income Support or;
income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, or;
income-related Employment and Support Allowance in the assessment phase (first 13 weeks of the claim)

Who must also have one of the following:

a pensioner premium. or;
a disability or severe disability premium, or;
an award of child tax credit that also includes an element for a disabled, or severely disabled child or young person, or;
a child under the age of five living with you

In addition to the qualifying benefits listed above, the property you live in must also be poorly insulated and/or not have a working central heating system. "

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Armin 9th November, 2011 @ 11:20

Very restrictive conditions;

The largest applicable demographic I can perceive in those rules would be single moms on benefits with children less than five years old.

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Benji 9th November, 2011 @ 12:43

As I said-
Nice in theory,
a load of old bollox in practice.

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leah 6th December, 2011 @ 19:12

i cannot see how this scheme can work surely there must be more terms and conditions to it than the ones stated. we have been in a property for 5 months and have found out its damp.

how can this scheme possibly work the landlords can say let the work commence leave you in it and then serve your notice and then get someone in that isnt in reciept of benifit. then its win for the landlord and not for the tennant. even if they do look after the house. as for the comment about tennant in reciept of benifit you cant tar them all with the same brush at this present time more people are having to go into the benifits system. if it happened to you would you be happy to have someone call you a bad tenant just because you were recieving dwp?

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Lucy Wilkinson 8th November, 2012 @ 11:51

for dss tenants are you any kind of grant available to supply and fit double glazing or is there no such thing Thank you in advance Lucy

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Nicola whitehead 18th September, 2013 @ 21:31

I'm hoping u can help me,
My tennants had a warm front boiler fitted a few years ago, when I spoke to warm front I asked if I had to renew the tennancy with these particular tennants (6 month tennancy) they advises no ,
However my tennants have not been paying rent and I have handed them their notice to not renew for a further 6 months, they are advising that they are entitled to stay in the property for 5 yrs
Please can you help
These are on housing benefit but are always late And short with the rent and currently 6 weeks in arrears
At my whits end

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Louie 22nd December, 2013 @ 17:15

Hope someone can help me. I am receiving incapacity benefits and i recieved a letter from the agency saying that the landlords want me out by the 21st of January ( i got the letter on the 21st of December ), apparently he needs the flat for himself. Now, i am trully worried because i have no saving ( i obviously don't work ) and i don't know what to do, will the agency help me find a place ?? How about the deposit, i don't have money for it, will they also help me with that? How does it work?? I will call the agency off course but it's weekend and i am worried sick about it, if someone has any idea of how it work PLEASE let me know.

Thank you,

Louie Martins

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anon 22nd January, 2014 @ 19:00

my landlord tried to do this AFTER he served an eviction notice. i didnt consent to it, so he didnt get it! damn scumbag! :)

for anyone that has this suggested to them, demand a 12/24/36 month tenancy agreement that the landlord cannot break, as they will evict you and rent to someone for more money!

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Stuart Schofield 30th July, 2014 @ 13:26

Im i entitled to a free replacement boiler i am a private tenant

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Anne Mc Quaid 8th November, 2014 @ 20:05

I am in reciept of disability benefits and myself and my landlord benefited from the heating scheme ie i got a new heating system, walls dry lined, roof insulated etc that was 6 months ago my landlord is now making me homeless saying his son is moving into yhe property what rights if any do i have

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Claire B 11th October, 2015 @ 11:14

Just stumbled across this page - although theres not been any post/comment for almost a year I thought I'd post something about my experiences of The Warm Front Scheme.

I used to be a working professional with a v.good income. Poor health meant I had to leave my job. I have not been well enough to work since. First off the comments about people on benefits is appalling. I trained for 8 years at university (under grad and post-grad) to be in the job I did. You absolutely can't tarnish everyone in receipt of benefits with the same brush and look down your nose at folks. Many people are forced into a position of having to claim benefits through absolutely no fault of their own.

I moved into an old property which basically was a shell. It had no heating whatsoever except an open fire in the lounge. The house came unfurnished and without any oven, fridge, freezer or washing machine. I applied to The Warm Front Scheme - within a few weeks of applying 2 men turned up to install a brand new oil central heating system with radiators in every room and constant hot water (as opposed to the old system which ran via an emersion switch and a back boiler on the open fire.) It only took a few days for the guys to install the whole system indoors and the new oil tank/boiler outside. The Warm Front Scheme also paid for 500 litres of oil to be put into the tank to get me going/help me out. I actually think the total spent from what the guys fitting it all told me was closer to £7,000 when you factor in the oil that was put in the tank.

My landlord had to sign an agreement for the installation to go ahead. At the time I had the heating installed, landlords were NOT allowed (possibly illegal under the conditions of the government scheme??) to increase the rent OR to evict tenants within (if I remember rightly) a five year period following installation - for exactly the reasons that are outlined in this article i.e. that many landlords really don't give a stuff about their tenants and just think in terms of £££££'s and what will work out best for them. I know there are some great landlords (and that goes for good/bad tenants too) out there but there are a LOT of pretty dodgy ones too, that I've come across anyway - lots who will very happily keep taking your money month after month, year after year but left moaning, dragging their heels and procrastinating about doing any repairs to the property, even if those repairs cost very little money. I worked out the other day I've spent around £60,000 in rent over the past 10 years. Thats a lot of money. Renting a property IS a business. It should work both ways ie. for the landlord AND tenant - as is the case with other things we buy/invest a LOT of money into.

So, in short, if you can still apply for The Warm Front Scheme then you most definitely should!
The scheme was set up to try to bring all social housing up to a certain standard/level in Britain and with most of the poorest people, those who are on long term sickness benefits or are out of work being hit the hardest with many of those being in pretty dire accommodation because that's all they can afford. The 5 year marker/rule as I said before was put in place to protect tenants and to stop landlords rubbing their hands together thinking they can get the improvements done for free then give a tenant the boot once work has completed so they can massively increase the rent of the property OR try to sell the property.

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ashley 10th October, 2016 @ 08:44

Hi all i rent a property we have been here year have spent alot of money doing it up as hasnt been touched in years half the house is double glazed half the house is single is there any help the landlord can get towards getting the rest done he has mentioned he doesn't have the money but the windows are rotten & it's freezing

Advice please thanks

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Elleine 7th November, 2016 @ 12:47

Hi,
We were eligible and our landlord applied for loft insulation&boiler. They did insulation, but we were still waiting for boiler. In the meantime our situation has changed and we are not eligible anymore.
We are going to move the property in less than 3 weeks(we gave notice) and now our landlord has been trying to get new boiler for his property and our names on tax credits.
I informed him that we are not eligible, but he has still pushed us and expect that we will speak with advisor from company(that's the third company since he has been trying to get grant.
Can Iget any adivce from anyone please? I have no idea if we can refuse to do new boiler in case if we are eligible( however,I am sure we are not). I am afrair we will not get full deposit after end of tenancy if we do not agree for everything what he expects.

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Margaret 25th April, 2017 @ 12:35

Hi.I just happened to stumble over this when i was searching for double glazing grants available to landlords of dss tennants and got a bit distracted by the blog. I am a dss private tennant and been with the lanlord for 5 years with no problems however i do fully get that landlords are wary off dss tennants because of the benefit being paid direct however u could argue that a non benefit tennant could be as much a risk of falling into arrears as they dont have the extra benefit specifically for rent. You also mention that dss tennants often have a shortfall which is true however it could be benificial to both tennant and landlord if they did decide to accept benefit tennants then to only accept them if the benefit covers the rent eg.one person in a two or three bed property is probably problems waiting to happen ..anyway back to my original query does anyone no of any grants for double glazing for dss tennants/ landlords .Thankyou

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