Energy Company Obligation (ECO)

Homeowners and tenants

The Energy Company Obligation (ECO) is a government energy efficiency scheme in Great Britain to tackle fuel poverty and help reduce carbon emissions.

To find out more about ECO, see the about the scheme section.

Can I benefit from ECO?

In order to benefit from ECO your property will need to require energy efficiency upgrades. The specific measures that would benefit your home would be determined by a retrofit assessment. You must own your own home or have permission from your landlord, including if the property is owned by a social housing provider or management company.

You can contact any of the obligated energy suppliers to find out how they may be able to help you benefit from the ECO scheme, even if they are not your energy provider.

Who is eligible?

You could be eligible for ECO if you receive at least one of the following benefits:

  • Child Benefit
  • Pension Guarantee Credit
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA)
  • Income Support
  • Tax Credits (Child Tax Credits and Working Tax Credits)
  • Universal Credit
  • Housing benefit
  • Pension credit saving credit

Local authorities are also able to refer residents in their areas to obligated energy suppliers so that they can be offered support under the ECO Flex.

It is important to note that eligibility for ECO doesn’t necessarily mean that an energy supplier or installer will decide to install energy efficiency measures in your home.

ECO4 Flex

The Local Authority and Supplier Flex element of the scheme (ECO4 Flex) allows local authorities (LAs), and the Scottish and Welsh governments (referred to in the scheme as Devolved Administrations or DAs), to refer households to an obligated energy supplier. LAs and DAs can identify low-income and / or vulnerable households who are not in receipt of the means tested benefits listed above (under ‘Who is eligible?’), but who may benefit from energy efficiency improvements.

Energy suppliers can also refer households under ECO4 Flex, where they are either struggling with persistent fuel debt and are supported by suppliers or are using pre-payment meters and have regularly been unable to stay connected to their fuel supplies due to financial hardship.

If your LA or DA is participating in the scheme, they can make a joint referral for both ECO4 Flex and Great British Insulation Scheme Flex, as the eligibility criteria are similar. If a supplier decides to take the referral forward, a retrofit assessor would determine which of the schemes is suitable, and the specific measures that would benefit your home.

It is important to note that eligibility for ECO doesn’t necessarily mean that an energy supplier or installer will decide to install energy efficiency measures in your home.


ECO4 Flex eligibility

You could be eligible under ECO4 Flex if:

You live in a property that requires energy efficiency upgrades and:

  • You have a combined gross annual household income under £31,000 or
  • A person in your household has a severe or long-term health condition that is adversely affected by living in a cold home, and is due to one of the following:
    • A cardiovascular condition,
    • A respiratory disease,
    • Limited mobility, or
    • Immunosuppression

There are various other criteria that LAs / DAs can use to identify low-income, vulnerable and fuel-poor households. Please contact your LA / DA (or visit their website) to find out if they are participating, and if you could be eligible. Your LA / DA may allow self-referral, further information will be available on their website or by contacting them directly.  

If you need to make a complaint about your installation

Our role as administrator of ECO involves setting targets for each obligated energy supplier, ensuring compliance and monitoring their progress towards these targets. We have no oversight of the contractual arrangements between the obligated energy suppliers and those that install energy efficiency measures on their behalf. As such, our ability to help you resolve a complaint is limited. However, we encourage you to get in touch with any feedback on any negative consumer experiences you may have had. This enables our work with industry to help improve standards.

For more information on resolving your complaint visit our dedicated page.

Complaints about measures installed before the ECO scheme

The information above applies mainly to ECO measures but similar steps should be followed for complaints about energy efficiency measures installed under previous schemes.

As mentioned above, for schemes that have now closed we are unlikely to be able to provide you with any details about the installation

For the Community Energy Saving Programme (CESP), which ran from October 2009 to 31 December 2012, we may be able to confirm if a measure has been notified to us. Please contact the ECO team ( if you believe that this applies to you.

Can I get help outside of ECO?

If you live in England or Wales and would like advice on energy efficiency,   or about how to get help with energy bills with schemes like the Warm Home Discount Scheme, the Simple Energy Advice website offers impartial energy efficiency advice. If you live in Scotland, you should contact Home Energy Scotland on 0808 808 2282 or complete their contact form.

To find out about the schemes available you could use the government's energy grants calculator to check if you are eligible.

TrustMark - Government endorsed quality

Installers under ECO must  be TrustMark accredited and will have a registration number, except in the case of installers of district heating connections. If you are contacted by an installer, always ask to see their registration credentials. You can check these on the TrustMark website.

Contacting the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy

Although Ofgem is the appointed administrator of ECO, The Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy set the overall policy for the ECO scheme.