What is the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund?

What is the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund?

Registered Providers of Social Housing are eligible to apply for the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund.

Private registered providers can only apply as part of a consortium led by a Local Authorities.

Wave one of the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund (SHDF) opened 23 August 2021 and closes 15 October 2021.

How much funding is available?

The Government has proposed a £3.8bn Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund over a 10-year period, to improve the energy performance of social rented homes.

A £62m fund was announced in 2020 followed by £160m for the first wave of the SHDF in financial year 2021/22 delivering to January 2023.

What measures are available?

The scheme runs with a fabric first principle to maximise the dwelling’s suitability for low carbon heating either now or in the future.

Registered providers must improve their stock using a fabric first approach to at least a minimum of EPC C.

Measures are also expected to improve properties to a space heating demand of 90kwh/m2/year

The scheme allows any measure that is eligible with SAP (Standard Assessment Procedure) with the exception of fossil fuel heating systems.

Low Carbon Heating can be installed where a fabric first approach is taken, and all new heating systems must reduce bills in isolation compared to the existing system.

  • cavity wall insulation
  • solid wall insulation (internal or external)
  • loft insulation
  • window and door replacement
  • heating systems and controls
  • water efficiency devices and systems
  • renewable energy systems such as solar panels and heat pumps.

What must social housing providers demonstrate in applications?

Applicants are asked to be able to demonstrate that they can:

- Bring together a strong delivery team, including a Retrofit Coordinator

- Identify groups of suitable dwellings for retrofit to be undertaken and secure permission from the occupants in advance of works taking place

- Procure skills and materials from the retrofit supply chain in a timely manner

- Measure baseline dwelling performance to understand retrofit needs

- Design and implement retrofits to improve energy performance of stock and meet targets

- Measure real life performance

- Oversee delivery of retrofit in such a way as to avoid adverse consequences, e.g. overheating, problems associated with damp etc.

- Coordinate all of the above to successfully deliver the projects by Jan 2023.

Applications will be divided into three scoring sections:

  1. Strategic Fit (45%) to assess how well the proposal fits with the aims, desired outcomes and eligibility criteria of the SHDF Wave 1 Scheme.
  2. Delivery Assurance (35%) to assess the feasibility and credibility of the project.
  3. Value for Money (20%) to ensure that projects deliver high value for money for SHDF and BEIS.

What projects are suitable?

The project must be led by a Local Authority in England.

Private Registered Providers of social housing can apply as part of a consortium with an LA in England.

The Lead LA does not have to submit their own stock as part of a consortia bid, the bid can be entirely made up of stock from other providers of social housing.

All social housing, including private and LA providers, is eligible, regardless of archetype, including both on- & off-gas grid.

There is no income related eligibility for social housing tenants.

How much funding is available per property?

There are cost caps in place for home upgrades based on starting performance of home - facilitating the treatment of the worst performing homes.

Higher caps on those homes with a worse starting EPC Band.



Max funding

Minimum landlord contribution

if co-funded

Total costs

















The administrative & ancillary costs expected to make up less than 15% of total costs and are in addition to the costs for home upgrades.Grant funding requested per property can be totalled and allocated flexibly across the application as appropriate.

Providers are required to contribute at least one third of the total eligible project costs.

Can mixed tenures be included in projects?

Funding for other tenure types is available through SHDF, but only when social homes would be adversely affected without it and if the bid contains a minimum of 70% social housing.

Funding is also limited to infill measures - measures that all residential units require in order for the social homes to meet the fund's performance objectives, likely to be insulation and associated ventilation.

What are the standards for installers?

All installers are required to be TrustMark Registered or equivalent, and compliant with TrustMark requirements.

All projects must be compliant with the most up to date PAS 2035:2019 specification and guidance (PAS 2035).

Installers must have appropriate certifications for eligible measures and low carbon heating installers must be registered with Trustmark or equivalent, and be certified with relevant MCS standards.

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