The government recently announced that nearly 19,000 people have arranged for Green Deal assessments to be carried out on their properties. It shows a steady growth in interest for the scheme, which was launched at the end of January. Climate Change Minister Greg Barker said, “It’s still early days for this long-term initiative, but this is a clear sign of growing interest from consumers, with people keen to improve the efficiency of their homes to make them warmer and help save money on bills.”

The true success of Green Deal will, however, be seen in the number of people who go on to fully sign up to the scheme, which is designed to help improve the energy efficiency of homes and businesses. Official figures on this will not be released until 27th June but sources claim that some of the first packages have already been awarded.

Details on how people are responding to the scheme will also be published in June, giving the first official indication of the public’s response to the initiative. The research will focus on the number of people who take up the scheme following assessment compared with those who decide to make the improvements themselves.

The recent figures also showed a large uptake for the ECO scheme, which runs alongside Green Deal providing subsidised improvements for those on benefits and low incomes. Since launching earlier in the year, the ECO scheme has awarded £85.5 million of funding for energy efficiency improvements.

This positive news comes alongside a warning for consumers to be extra careful when approached by companies offering Green Deal assessments. There have been reports of unaccredited companies posing as official assessors and charging administrative fees for the initial assessments to be done, prompting Greg Barker to comment, “Cowboys will not be tolerated in any part of the Green Deal.” Home owners are urged to check for the Green Deal Quality Mark – the initiative’s stamp of approval – before speaking with anyone about work or assessments under the Green Deal.