Overview of the Scheme
The Homeowner Flood Protection Grant Scheme (Northern Ireland) is a government scheme which is designed to encourage the owners of residential properties that have flooded before and/or are located within known flood prone areas, to modify their properties to make them more resistant to flooding.
The Grant Scheme is specifically aimed at residential properties that have flooded internally in the past and continue to be exposed to frequent flooding (see page 8 regarding eligibility). Tenants will not be eligible to apply for the scheme.
If an application is approved, the Grant Scheme will cover 90% of the costs, up to a maximum of £10,000 of the total survey and estimated installation. The successful homeowner will be required to make a contribution of 10% of the survey and estimated installation costs, and any additional cost that may be incurred above £10,000. This contribution must be paid in full before commencement of the works.
The sequencing of payments is that the homeowner will also be required to make an initial ‘up-front’ payment of £50 towards the cost of the specialist survey and this will subsequently be deducted from the 10% homeowner contribution that is to be paid prior to installation. In situations where a suitable design solution cannot be recommended, this will be discussed with the homeowner and the initial ‘up-front’ payment of £50 will be refunded. The initial £50 ‘up-front’ payment will not be refunded without good cause.
The cost of installing a package of flood protection measures will vary from property to property and is mainly influenced by the property type (i.e. terrace, semi-detached, detached etc.) and the nature of the ground floor construction (i.e. suspended or solid). Installation and specialist survey costs are typically within the range £3,500 to £7,500 and therefore, it is likely that the homeowner contribution costs are likely to be between £350 and £750. The Grant will be paid directly to the Scheme’s appointed building surveyor and building contractor. No monies will be paid to the homeowner and the homeowner cannot employ their own surveyor or contractor.
On receipt of the ‘up front’ payment of £50, the Scheme administrator (DfI Rivers) will appoint a building surveyor to conduct a water entry survey. The building surveyor will then recommend, if this is possible for your individual property, a design of appropriate property protection measures. Then, once agreement to proceed has been reached between the homeowner and DfI Rivers, a suitably experienced building contractor will be appointed to install the property protection measures in accordance with the agreed schedules and specifications drawn up by the building surveyor. The contractor will not be appointed until the homeowner has paid their 10% contribution.
On completion of the work to a property, it will be tested to check its resistance to flood water; this may be done by temporarily ponding water against the installed measures (a process known as a ‘wet-testing’). Other methods of testing may be recommended by specific manufactures which do not require wet-testing. Any testing will be carried out in the presence of the homeowner. The homeowner will also be provided with an instruction pack on how to maintain the measures and fit them in advance of threatened flooding.
It should be noted that it is a condition of the grant award that should a homeowner move house; the measures installed must remain with the property.
If you are interested in the Grant Scheme and think you may be eligible, complete and return your application form to:Flood Protection Grant Scheme Manager
DfI Rivers Headquarters
49 Tullywiggan Road