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Free Solar Panels & LED Bulbs - free uk goverment scheme

(6 Posts)
helpnonickname Thu 02-Jul-15 14:02:40

Mums / dads, please advise. Just now someone spoke with me at my front door re the above. Have you had anyone spoken to you about the scheme? She said we don't have to pay for anything! Has anyone signed up for it? What is it like?

PigletJohn Thu 02-Jul-15 15:21:49

never deal with doorsteppers.

Have a look at the BG website, they usually offer free insulation and other goodies as part of their energy-saving obligation, even if you are not their customer. Try not to give your name or sign anything with doorsteppers as they may register you as their customer and prevent anyone else accessing government schemes for you.

The "free solar panels" schemes that I have heard on mean the installer gets all the subsidy, and your house is landed with a 25-year charge against it which will be unwelcome to future buyers and mortgage companies.

In particular beware of boiler replacement schemes, they are often used by poor-quality installers. As the price is fixed they tend to cut corners to improve their profits.

PausingFlatly Thu 02-Jul-15 15:29:08

Second what PJ says about doorsteppers.

But it's worth looking at "free solar panel" schemes in general.

The way they mostly work is that, as PJ says, the installer gets the government subsidy (Feed-In Tariffs), but the occupier gets the free electricity while the sun shines. So they provide the capital, you provide the roof, and you split the benefits.

That might be unwelcome to future buyers, or they too might be pleased with the free electricity and lower bills.

If you can afford to pay for panels yourself, that's a better option. But if you want panels and can't afford it, a good "free panels" scheme could be useful. As ever, read the small print very carefully!

specialsubject Thu 02-Jul-15 15:40:05

there's no government scheme.

the 'free panels' mean the company has a charge on your roof, making the place very difficult to sell. The installers of these also have a high percentage of cowboys and may not think about roof loading. They also seem to put a surprising number of panels on north facing or shaded roofs.

the free/cheap lightbulbs are long gone.

if it's any good, it isn't peddled on the doorstep. Rule no 1.

helpnonickname Thu 02-Jul-15 19:42:59

If anything sounds too good to be true it is usually the case.

specialsubject Thu 02-Jul-15 21:59:46

rule number zero!

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