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Future of Energy Q3 2023

How retrofitting can make our homes warmer and cheaper to heat

Solar photovoltaic panels on a house roof
Solar photovoltaic panels on a house roof
iStock / Getty Images Plus / MAXSHOT

Eamon Ryan

Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications

Retrofitting — home energy efficiency upgrades — can help people manage or reduce the amount of energy used in homes and is being carried out to reduce harmful emissions.


The Government has committed to significantly reducing harmful emissions across all sectors of our economy. The Climate Action Plan sets out sectoral targets, including those aimed at reducing the amount of energy that we use in our homes. This is already happening through an ambitious programme of retrofitting, requiring a significant scaling up of activity in the sector. 

Home retrofitting targets and upgrading energy

Last year, we surpassed our target to retrofit 27,000 homes. This year, we aim to go further, with a target of 37,000 retrofits and a record €356 million in funding. In the first six months, we’ve supported almost 22,000 more retrofits, with demand and application levels setting us up for more retrofits next year and onto 2030.

The Government introduced support packages to make it easier and more affordable for homeowners to undertake home energy upgrades. Here’s an outline of what’s available through the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) to suit your home upgrade needs and budget best:

  1. The Better Energy Homes Scheme (Individual Grant Scheme) allows homeowners to take a step-by-step approach or self-manage the project — a good option to get attic insulation or heating controls installed before winter.
  2. The National Home Energy Upgrade Scheme and Community Energy Grant Scheme are aimed at homeowners wishing to undertake a whole-house energy upgrade, achieving a Building Energy Rating of at least B2.
  3. The Warmer Homes Scheme provides fully funded upgrades to lower-income households.

Home retrofitting makes it warmer and
more efficient, and it has wider benefits.

Wider advantages of home retrofitting

Home retrofitting makes it warmer and more efficient, and it has wider benefits. Reducing energy usage and switching to electricity for heating makes Ireland less reliant on imported fossil fuels, improving our energy security. Moreover, the Government’s retrofit programme creates new green jobs in the construction industry as well as long-term careers in the retrofit sector.

The Government is also giving people more control over their energy bills through the Microgeneration Support Scheme. This enables people to generate their own renewable electricity, selling back any excess to the national grid. Since its launch, over 2,000 applications every month have been made across both the domestic and non-domestic solar PV (photovoltaics) schemes operated by SEAI.

More people are joining the renewable energy revolution, helping them manage their electricity costs and giving them the means to reduce their emissions and support the electricity grid. You can join them. See the full details of the supports and grants available at seai.ie/grants

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