Official Green Deal figures have shown that only four Green Deal finance plans have been finalised after more than 38,000 assessments of homes have been carried out.

The figures, published by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), showed that there are 241 finance plans pending since the scheme launched at the end of January.

The figures reveal 38,259 assessments of homes had been carried out in that period and that only 4 Green Deal finance plans had been signed.

Green Deal finance plan figures, revealed for the first time, show that so far cash back payments of £260,000 fall well short of the £125m made available to incentivise take-up of energy efficiency measures through the scheme.

Only five solid wall installations have so far been done with the cash back element of the scheme.

The vast majority of the measures that received a cash back – 99% – were the installation of boilers.

The figures also showed that £131m of Energy Company Obligation (ECO) finance has so far been spent on 72,525 properties. Of the measures funded through ECO, 56% were loft insulation measures; 33% were cavity wall measures; 10% were new boilers; and just 2% were solid wall insulation measures.

The figures also showed there are now 63 Green Deal providers and 1,254 installer organisations accredited.

Commenting on the first quarterly Green Deal and Energy Company Obligation statistics, Greg Barker, Minister for Energy and Climate Change, said: “The Green Deal is an ambitious and uniquely long-term programme designed to upgrade the energy efficiency of Britain’s homes. It’s only just getting started, but the early signs are encouraging.

“Today we’ve seen that 81,798 installations have taken place with the support of the new Energy Company Obligation, helping those most in need or with particularly hard to treat properties. But this is just the start. 38,259 Green Deal assessments is also a clear sign that many consumers genuinely want to make their homes more efficient; but we are keen to do more.”

The Green Deal update follows the Committee on Climate Change annual progress report to Parliament stating that the UK is not on track to meet its targets to cut greenhouse gas emissions through the 2020s. One of the reasons cited in the report as not helping is that ‘there are very low levels of solid wall insulation being installed’.

Anne-Marie Armstrong from Wetherby Building Systems said:“The main barrier to solid wall insulation being installed is funding and since the majority within the industry still do not understand how it works, there is a huge education process required. It was only at the end of the CERT and CESP schemes, when 100% funding became available, that take up for external wall insulation (EWI) increased, with a significant spike in installations in the second half of 2012.

“However, since the new initiatives – Green Deal and ECO – launched in January, the level of EWI projects has taken a backwards step since the industry was just not ready. The first issue has been the level of funding available, as many social housing providers are anticipating that ECO will follow the same pattern as CERT and CESP and are not committing to projects that are 50% – 60% funded, if there is a chance they will become fully funded as we get further into the 2 ½ year programme.

“The second hurdle is actually understanding the fundamentals of how the funding process works, since the few projects that have been awarded under the schemes have been fraught with issues. This is testament to a scheme that has been well planned in theory, but has been launched without effective communication with EWI experts.

“Should the government wish to increase take up of solid wall insulation, it needs to firstly ensure that all necessary processes are firmly in place, but more importantly it needs to educate system manufacturers, contractors and social landlords on exactly how these processes should work.”