Reader question: Am I entitled to any financial aid to help with double glazing or other insulation work in France? I am 80, living alone on a pension.
The French government does currently provide financial aid for home renovations to insulate a home and upgrade single glazed windows to double or even triple glazing.
Some of these can depend on income levels, but they are mostly not specific to a person’s age or being a pensioner.
Having said this, if you have a French pension, then your caisse de retraite may offer some aid towards this kind of work, and it is worth asking about this.
Otherwise, the best way to identify the most suitable help for you is to contact a local conseiller, an advisor, from the official FranceRénov network. In fact from January 1 2023 it is mandatory to be helped by this network for certain large scale work. Enter your address on this page and it will then show you their contact details.
If you prefer, you can also enter your information on this page and it will estimate the financial aid you are entitled to.
One such scheme is called MaPrimeRénov’ which is a grant towards improvements aimed at better energy efficiency. Double glazing and insulation fits the bill as they reduces energy costs by conserving heat better.
Help available via the MaPrimeRénov’ grant depends on factors such as your household income and the number of people living in your household. Whether you live in Ile-de-France or not also changes the thresholds for income which determine the amount of the financial aid.
There are other requirements to qualify for this grant. Your house must be at least 15 years old and you must live in it at least eight months of the year.
A version of this scheme called MaPrimeRénov’ Sérénité is aimed at an overall boost of at least 35% to the energy efficiency of homes of people with ‘modest’ or ‘very modest’ incomes, which may apply to you if you are living alone off your pension.
Under this scheme you need to work with advice from France Rénov who will help you work out the best combination of work, which is likely to include insulation and double glazing.
You can receive 65% off the pre-tax cost of work up to €35,000 of works (€22,750 maximum in grant) if you are deemed to have a ‘very modest’ income, ie. no more than €16,229/year of revenu fiscal de référence.
For this, you should check your income tax statement for the year before the one in which you have the work done).
You can receive up to 50% off work up to €17,500 of pre-tax costs if your income is ‘modest’ (up to €20,805 of annual income outside Ile-de-France).
Other help for window and loft insulation
If you do not qualify for that scheme on income grounds or you do not want to do such large-scale improvements, you are still able to qualify for up to €100 per window to change them from single glazing to double glazing under the basic MaPrimeRénov scheme, just not the Sérénité version.
The windows must also have certain minimum insulation levels, but this should be the case if you use an approved firm to do the work.
This should have the certification RGE – reconnu garant de l’environnement. You can find a directory at this link.
This scheme can be combined with another grant linked to the CEE scheme, the Certificats d’Economie d’Energie, which refers to aid funded by energy companies (which are obliged to help people make their homes energy efficient).
Although this has been reduced, you can still receive financial aid for insulating your loft of €12/m2 for the lowest incomes or €10/m2 in general.
In any case, your next step should be to contact your local branch of France Rénov.
The advisers there should be able to help you with your applications and make sure that you apply in the right way and do not fall victim to scams.
To apply for financial aid, visit this page.