Sources of free advice and grant funding in the UK

Free Advice

There are many sources of free advice and some grant funding to help you make home improvements to make your home more age friendly or more accessible. Many but not all grants are means tested.

Am I disabled?

It may not have occurred to you that because an illness or impairment makes life harder, you may be covered under the Disability provisions of the law in your country (Equality Act 2010 in England, Scotland and Wales). But if you are, you are more likely to be entitled to valuable and free support, advice and benefits .

The Official Definition of a disabled person is this: ‘You’re disabled under the Equality Act 2010 if you have a physical or mental impairment that has a ‘substantial’ and ‘long-term’ negative effect on your ability to do normal daily activities.’

Ask yourself: Does an illness, impairment or long term injury make it harder for me to do everyday activities such as washing, dressing or cooking? Do these things take much longer than they used to? Do they cause me pain? Do I need someone to help me with some of these tasks? If the answer is ‘yes’ then you may be eligible for additional support and benefits to help you cover the cost of the support.

  1. Needs Assessment – Everyone is entitled to a needs assessment or a carers assessment (if you care for someone) – this is undertaken by your Local Council’s Occupational Therapy team (or similar) – the same team can arrange for aids, equipment and, if you are eligible, adaptations to your home. There may be a waiting list for some of these services, so don’t delay your application.
  2. Home improvement and Disability Facility Grants – these are normally means tested, but not always. See the Home Improvement Grants section below

Use the search tool below to find your local council or other charitable source of advice . (Clicking ‘Go’ will take you to an external website)

Home Improvements Grants

What are they and can I get them?

If you are a homeowner or a private tenant you may be able to claim help towards making repairs, improvements or adaptations to your home.
Note: If you live in Northern Ireland please visit home improvement grants in Northern Ireland.

Whether assistance is granted is at the discretion of your local authority – there are local and regional variations. In general grants are paid to people who are older, disabled or on a low income.

How do I claim?

To make a claim contact your local authority. In England you can also get information from your local Home Improvement Agency via the Foundations website in England. In Wales check Care and Repair Cymru and in Scotland ask your local council about it’s ‘scheme of assistance’ as there is no central body and it will vary in each region.

Home improvement grant examples

You might be eligible for a free grant to upgrade the heating, insulation and the energy-efficiency of your home. There are grants currently available to people on a low income through the Government’s ECO scheme.

1. Boiler Grants – check your eligibility and apply for a boiler grant here

2. Insulation Grants – check your eligibility and apply for an insulation grant here

3. Electric Heating Grants – if you have electric room heaters or electric storage heaters and they are the main way of heating your home you might be eligible for a grant to upgrade or replace them – check your eligibility and apply for an electric heating grant here

4. First Time Central Heating Grants – if you’ve never had central heating at your property – check your eligibility and apply for a First Time Central Heating (FTCH) grant here

Benefits – Eligibility and Assessment

There are many benefits that you may be entitled to and don’t yet realise. Millions of people are missing out on thousands of pounds each year. You can do a basic check at www.entitledto.co.uk This checker covers the main benefits but not all.

For a modest fee you can get a full benefits check from our specialist partner company www.carenavigators.co.uk

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