As the preliminary stages of this project demonstrated, communication and engagement with the local community is one the most important factors in bringing about change. A communication strategy could be a huge support to Greystones/Delgany SEC in delivering and further developing their Energy Master Plan (EMP) and assist in putting a plan in place to act on the findings from the EMP.
The next steps for the group include:
- Discuss among the group the best way to disseminate the results – this could be through social media, holding an event with 3CEA, newsletter, local radio slot etc.
- Inform the community about the results from the energy master plan and the next steps involved.
- Identify several projects in the Action Plan that could be implemented in 2022 onwards.
- Access support through the SEAI SEC mentoring programme. Support can be provided for grant applicants.
- Investigate lead applicant role for Community Energy Grant projects – either community led or partner with a lead applicant.
- Investigate finance options and complete community energy projects.
- Provide regular updates to the local community on the project’s progress and gather support and opportunities for other project developments.
12.1 Getting Started
12.1.1 Applying for an Individual SEAI Grant:
The procedure to apply for an individual SEAI grant is relatively painless and consists of a clear series of steps, these may vary slightly depending on the grant you are applying for. Steps to follow include:
- Choose your energy upgrades — We advise you to contact a BER* assessor, building contractor or energy advisor to discuss the suitability of the upgrades you have in mind.
- Find your BER – The BER register contains all of the BERs that have been completed in Ireland
- Contact an SEAI registered technical advisor — The advisor will provide you with a written contract for undertaking a technical assessment. This step only applies if you are applying for a heat pump grant.
- Choose a registered contractor — The contractor you choose should provide you with a contract for any work before the actual work begins. You will need this contract later for the grant application process.
- Apply for the corresponding grant or grants — You can apply either online via the SEAI website or by submitting a postal application. Online applications will receive grant offers immediately. Postal offers will be issued within five working days. You must accept the offer within the 30-day period after receiving it.
- Have the work on your home carried out — You must make sure all work is carried out within the following eight-month period. Your grant offer letter will contain the final date for completing the work. Be sure all work is carried out by an SEAI registered contractor. Either pay the contractor outright or organise financing with them, then complete a BER assessment and have a BER certificate published.
- Receive the grant you applied for — You must fill out and submit a Declaration of Works form, which the SEAI should have sent to you by post. You will need one form for each upgrade, and each form needs to be filled in by you, your contractor and your BER assessor. Payment will usually be lodged in your bank account within four weeks of submitting the form.