Scottish households still have a chance to cash in on a scheme offering free loft and cavity wall insulation, but only until the end of March 2012 on a first-come, first-served basis. Loft insulation can save up to £175 a year on heating bills, while cavity wall insulation can save up to £135 a year. With no costs to worry about, it's an easy way to counter the effects of rising gas and electricity prices. For homes that aren't suitable for insulation there's also free impartial advice on other grants and offers that could help instead.

Since securing funding from the Scottish Government to pay for loft and cavity wall insulation for suitable homes in the area, local authorities in Scotland have been working hard to promote the scheme with events and advertising. While response to the campaign has been strong, the Energy Saving Scotland advice centre (based here at Changeworks) is keen to see more people in South East Scotland taking up the funding while it's still available.

Energy bills can be a worry for many households, and insulating a property can make a big difference not just to energy bills but to the warmth and comfort of a home, as it did for 76 year old Agnes Ross from Tranent. Mrs Ross had her property insulated in November last year through the scheme and has already recommended it to friends and neighbours. She said: "I didn't think I needed cavity wall insulation as I lived in the middle of a terrace, but the house is very much warmer now. I haven't had to put the heating up at all in the last few weeks. I only have it on in the living room and in the hall downstairs".

Aside from being a homeowner or private tenant there are no eligibility criteria to meet the only condition is that the property can take the insulation. Households in participating areas should receive a letter telling them about the scheme and how to take advantage of the offer, or they can check by calling the Home Energy Scotland Hotline on 0800 512 012. The scheme will run until 31 March 2012 on a first come, first served basis.