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Wednesday, 3 October 2023

Feed-in tariffs: cashback for generating your own energy

Energy suppliers pay households for generating their own electricity under the feed-in tariffs scheme. Find out what you need to qualify and how to apply.

Update to the feed-in tariffs scheme

Following consultation with industry, the public and other stakeholders, the government has made a number of changes to the feed-in tariffs scheme.

Tariffs have been reduced for new entrants to the scheme, and a system has been put in place to ensure that in future tariffs will continue to reduce as costs come down. These decisions were a result of significant and swift reductions in the global costs of solar PV technology. The change in rates came into effect on 1 August 2012.

Feed-in tariffs: what energy suppliers pay for

If you generate your own electricity, for example with solar panels or a wind turbine, an energy supplier might pay you money for just doing this. These are called feed-in tariffs.

Your supplier will pay you a set amount of money for each unit (kilowatt hour) of electricity you generate.

The rates for feed-in tariffs vary, depending on:

  • the size of your system
  • what technology you install
  • when your technology was installed
  • whether the technology was put in by a certified installer
  • the energy efficiency rating of the building

Speak to your supplier to find out what exactly the rate for your technology would be.

Exporting energy

If you produce more energy than you use yourself, your supplier will pay you 4.5 pence for every unit you send onto the network. This money is in addition to the generation tariff.

How much you could earn from generating your own electricity

As an example, a household with a 2.5 kilowatt solar electricity system could earn:

  • £920 per year for generating energy
  • £30 per year for exporting energy
  • £170 per year from savings on energy bills

This is a total of around £1,120 per year.

(This assumes that 50 per cent of the energy is exported.)

Technologies supported by feed-in tariffs

To qualify for feed-in tariffs, your installation must be no more than five megawatts capacity. Technologies covered by the scheme are:

  • PV solar panels
  • wind turbines
  • water turbines
  • anaerobic digestion (biogas energy)
  • micro combined heat and power (up to two kilowatts)

Your technology must also be installed by a certified installer.

If you move house, you will need to arrange the transfer of the feed-in tariff to the new owner or tenant.

How to apply for feed-in tariffs

Here is what you need to do to apply:

  1. do a home energy check to make sure your property is as energy efficient as possible
  2. decide which technology is right for your property - see here or talk to an expert to decide this
  3. have the technology installed by a certified installer
  4. get a feed-in tariff qualification certificate from your installer
  5. send a copy of the certificate to your energy supplier
  6. your supplier will check the certificate and let you know if you qualify for a feed-in tariff
  7. if you qualify, your supplier will register you and send you a confirmation
  8. you agree with your supplier how often they will pay you (eg monthly, quarterly)

In this section...

Additional links

Energy efficiency helpline

England and Wales:
0300 123 1234
9am-8pm Mon-Fri, 10am-2pm Sat

Calls will be charged at standard national rate

0800 512 012
9am-5pm Mon-Fri

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