Page last updated at 03 July 2015 at 11:53
Feed-in Tariff (FIT)
Under this government scheme you can earn money as you generate electricity. Your energy supplier will pay you a set rate for every unit you generate plus buy anything you export to the national grid. The rate you are paid is set at the time your system is commissioned, guaranteed for the life of the tariff (up to 20 years) and is also index linked.
FITs are currently available for small scale systems including:
- solar photovoltaic (pv) panels
- wind turbines
- anaerobic digestors
- Micro CHP
All systems must be installed by an accredited Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) contractor and for solar PV an EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) of grade D or above is also required. As an added assurance always choose an installer that has adopted the REAL Assurance Scheme Consumer Code which protects consumers and aims to resolve disputes.
Tariffs are reviewed every three months from 1st August 2012 and are usually reduced but the cost of the panels is dropping as well making them still an attractive investment. Read about tariffs from the Energy Saving Trust.
Free Solar Panels or Rent-a-Roof Schemes
Please be aware of offers of free solar pv panels by some companies. These are sometimes called rent-a-roof schemes where the installer takes the FIT payment and in return you benefit from the free electricity but only if you use it at the time it is generated (ie sunny periods during the day).
It is very important to read the fine print carefully to understand what rights the company has over your roof in case you wish to sell your house and have to pay to remove the panels at the end of the agreement. Always consult your mortgage lender.
To find out more, contact Giles Gooding on 023 8068 8274, email firstname.lastname@example.org, Twitter @EcoEastleigh