Limerick councillor deems two-year wait for warmer home scheme ‘unacceptable’

Limerick Labour Party councillor Joe Leddin.

LABOUR Party councillor Joe Leddin has called on the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) to reduce the time period between individual grant applications and works being approved.

Cllr Leddin maintains that while government is encouraging home owners to upgrade their homes in terms of retrofits and insulation works, the reality is much different.

“The reality is that many people, especially senior citizens, are waiting a minimum of two years before any works can be done,” he said.

“Every day I canvass, I am meeting people who have applied for a grant towards the retrofit or insulation of their home. While their application is processed relatively quickly, it can take up to a year for a registered BER assessor to call and a further year before a contractor is approved to carry out works.”

Cllr Leddin takes the view that this time period is simply too long, saying  he has contacted the SEAI requesting a faster processing of the administration.

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He said that “the reality is that many of these applications for grants are from senior citizens living in very old houses that require a lot of upgrade to increase their energy efficiency”.

”SEAI seem to prioritise the age of the house rather than the age of the applicant and it is very disheartening when a senior citizen decides to proceed with works and abandon the application process due to the entire process taking a minimum of two years.

”What is the point of promoting these grants and encouraging home owners to apply if there is no clarity on how long they will be waiting? There has to be a faster way to prioritise applications particularly for elderly people who cannot wait years to have works done.”