Luxury holiday lure for British energy savers

Britons who take out loans to insulate their houses will be rewarded by being entered into competitions to win luxury holidays, the energy and climate change secretary said Tuesday.

Chris Huhne told The Times newspaper that as well as receiving reductions on their gas and tax bills, people participating in the government scheme would be given the opportunity to win holidays in the Norwegian fjords.

"We will legislate to allow the energy companies to incentivise owner-occupiers," Huhne said. "If they want to offer the chance of a cruise for two to the Norwegian fjords that's something they can do."

The Department of Energy and Climate Change says that lack of insulation and double glazing has resulted in an estimated 16 million energy-inefficient homes in Britain.

Under the government's plans, liability for the loan will reside with whoever pays the energy bills, meaning if the house is sold, the new occupants would pay.

It is hoped that this will help ease people's concerns over the initial outlay - a typical house costs around 7,000 pounds (11,100 dollars, 8,200 euros) to insulate - and loss of investment if they move home.

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