Answer: The local authorities administer a means-tested grant scheme to help low-income households with the cost of replacing lead pipes and fittings.
If your income is below €50,000 a year, you may get a grant of up to 80% of the cost, up to a maximum of €4,000. If your income is between €50,001 and €75,000, you may get up to 50%, up to a maximum of €2,500. You will need to provide evidence of your household’s income when applying to the local authority for the grant.
You must own the premises and live in it as your principal private residence (your main home). You must get the remedial work done before applying for the grant, and it must cost at least €200.
You must have evidence of a risk of lead contamination in your home. This can either be:
* A letter from your water supplier (Irish Water or a group water scheme), advising that your water system probably contains lead pipes and fittings, or
* A recent certificate from an accredited laboratory, showing that the level of lead in your water supply is higher than the legal limit.
The contractor who does the work must give you the following: a current tax clearance certificate; itemised receipts; written confirmation that the works carried out and the materials used are of an appropriate quality and standard. You will need to enclose all these documents with your grant application.
If you are an Irish Water customer and you plan to replace your lead piping, you must first apply for Irish Water’s Customer Opt-in Lead Pipe Replacement Scheme.
You may be able to get some tax relief under the Home Renovation Incentive (HRI) scheme even if you get a grant to replace your lead piping – see revenue.ie.
Further information is available from www.citizensinformation.ie and the Citizens Information Phone Service on 0761 07 4000. Information is also available from your local Citizens Information Office at: Newbridge CIC, Parish Centre, Newbridge, tel: 0761 07 8300; Naas CIC, Basin Street, Naas; tel: 0761 07 8280.