Planning to replace your boiler at home in France? Now is a good time

Eco-friendly alternatives will be easier – and cheaper – to install from mid-May

There are multiple aids available to help install boilers

If you are looking to replace an old boiler at your French home with a new heating system, making the switch in the coming months could potentially save you both time and money.

Changes to the government’s main eco-renovation scheme – which come into force in mid-May – will temporarily make the process easier as the government looks to entice people into applying for the grants.

The MaPrimeRénov’ scheme is the main grant available to those replacing an old gas or fuel oil (fioul) boiler or heating system with a more economically friendly one.

New heating systems that can replace your boiler and are covered by the grants include multiple types of heat pumps, solar heating systems (not photovoltaic panels), and wood and wood-pellet stoves. 

A full list is available on the Service Public site here.

Depending on your level of household income, you could benefit from a grant of up to €11,000 to help replace an old boiler. You can download a document here detailing the level of aid available for each household income level.

Read more: Six tips to save money on your boiler in France

Why is now a good time to do this?

Alterations made to the French grant system MaPrimeRénov’ at the start of 2024 led to a large drop in applications in the first quarter of the year, with 40% fewer grant requests being submitted than the same time in 2023.

In order to boost these figures, some tweaks were made to ease the application process. 

Read more: France revamps energy renovation grants scheme to boost take-up

It means that from May 15, installing an eco-friendly heating system via the scheme will not require your home to have an energy audit prior to the installation. Previously this was obligatory.

A diagnostic de performance énergétique (DPE) is required when renting out or selling a property.

However it is also a mandatory file needed as part of your dossier when applying for most eco-renovation grants. 

Between May 15 and December 31, 2024 however, a DPE audit will not be needed as part of your application dossier. 

These audits must be carried out by a certified professional, but the cost is not regulated by the government. In places where there is a high demand, the cost can reach up to €250. 

This small but significant change therefore not only makes it easier to apply for the grant, but will save money. 

The price of the audit is not covered by the grant, which only relates directly to the work in question.

Remember that other aids exist to help you replace your boiler, including the zero-interest eco loan, CEE installation bonus and even yearly energy vouchers.

Read more: How does France’s new home renovation scheme for the over-70s work?

Other changes focus on insulation work

If you want instead to improve the insulation of your home, there is also good news. 

Between May 15 and December 31, 2024, funding will once again be available for one-off projects (mono-gestes) that improve a property’s insulation, without needing to also replace the heating system. 

This was previously the case, however the policy was scrapped at the start of 2024 – one of the main reasons applications for the grant plummeted. 

These works will also not require a DPE audit as part of the application dossier.

However, note that builders installing certain heating systems are no longer required to take out 10-year builder’s insurance against malfunction of the equipment. 

Read more: Heat pump insurance cover downgraded for many home owners in France