The government said new £5,000 grants will be available to households to help them to install low-carbon technologies from next April.
The plans aim to make heat pumps — which run on electricity and work like a fridge in reverse to extract energy from the air or ground — no more expensive to install than a traditional boiler.
While the new incentives aim to make the UK’s homes greener, the government has said homeowners will not be forced to make the low-carbon switch when replacing existing boilers.
But for those who want to choose a more environmentally friendly option, the grant will be available to cut the installation costs — which is around £10,000 on average for heat pumps.
Instead of forcing people into making an immediate switch, the grants aim to encourage homeowners to make green choices when the time comes to replace old boilers.
Octopus Energy, a renewable energy group, said it would install heat pumps for about the same cost as gas boilders when the grant scheme launches next spring.
The government’s boiler upgrade scheme is planned to run over three years until 2024 and the grants estimated to help replace 30,000 boilers each year.
It has been criticised by environmentalists as “inadequate” and “not a very good start”.
The government says it wants to see households “gradually move away” from fossil fuel boilers “in an affordable, practical and fair way” over the next 14 years.