After a long and arduous wait, the government has finally unveiled details of the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) for residential properties.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has revealed how homeowners will be paid hundreds of pounds for heat generated from systems such as solar thermal panels, biomass boilers and heat pumps.

Now, official tariffs have been set for each system, in the hope that more people will be encouraged to take up renewable systems, cut energy bills, reduce carbon emissions and earn money.

For air source heat pumps, homeowners will be able to benefit from a 7.3p/kW rate of return, with biomass boilers expected to provide 12.2p/kWH and ground source heat pumps providing 18.8p/kWh.

However, solar thermal installations will benefit the most from the RHI with 19.2p/kWh set to be paid to consumers who utilise this technology.

The government has described the scheme as "a world first" and has been available for commercial and other non-domestic properties since November 2011.

Energy and climate change minister Greg Barker said that the coalition is working hard to see hardworking families reduce the cost of living and steer clear of fuel poverty.

“Investing for the long term in new renewable heat technologies will mean cleaner energy and cheaper bills. So this package of measures is a big step forward in our drive to get innovative renewable heating kit in our homes," he added.

In addition to helping people to access renewable schemes, the move is intended to prove that the government is fully behind a green Great Britain.

Homeowners, private and social landlords, third-party owners of heating systems and people who build their own homes will all be eligible for RHI. People who have installed the relevant systems since July 15th 2009 and meet the eligibility criteria will also be able to benefit from the scheme.

The DECC has said that payments of the tariff will be made on a quarterly basis for the next seven years, and reflect the expected cost of renewable heat generation for 20 years.

RHI applicants will need to complete a Green Deal assessment before sending off their application, and will also be required to meet minimum loft and cavity wall insulation levels. After the assessment, householders could be able to claim for the upfront costs of installation for renewable systems via the Green Deal.