With gas prices rising, many people are worried about energy bills this winter.
Advice is available and it’s worth checking to see if you qualify for a discount.
Heating your home to at least 18°C (65°F) is important for your health and immune system, especially if you are 65 or over, have reduced mobility, or an existing health condition such as heart or lung disease.
If you’re eligible for benefits and are struggling to pay for food, fuel and other essential costs, you may be able to get extra help through the Local Discretionary Social Fund.
Energy Boost £150 payments
Households in Council Tax bands A to D will receive a one-off £150 payment towards increased fuel costs from mid-April onwards. There will also be a Discretionary Scheme for exceptional cases not covered by the main scheme.
The payment is separate from your Council Tax and it will not need to be repaid. It is yours to keep.
Later in the year, energy companies will also give households a £200 credit, repayable over 5 years in £40 instalments. This will be administered by the energy companies.
Warm Home Discount
You may be able to get £140 off your electricity bill this winter with a Warm Home Discount.
Or you may be able to get the discount on your gas bill instead, if your supplier provides you with both gas and electricity.
The discount scheme opens on 18 October. To find out more visit the gov.uk website or call 0800 731 0214.
Winter Fuel Payment
You could get a Winter Fuel Payment of between £100 and £300 to help pay your heating bills, if you were born on or before 26 September 1955.
If you get the state pension, you'll usually get the payment automatically in November or December. To find out more, visit the gov.uk website or call 0800 731 0160.
Cold Weather Payments
You may get a Cold Weather Payment if you’re getting certain benefits or ‘Support for Mortgage Interest’.
A payment of £25 is made for each 7 day period of very cold weather between 1 November and 31 March (0°C or below over seven consecutive days). Visit the gov.uk website to find out if you qualify.
(Cold Weather Payments are different to Winter Fuel Payments)
Advice and information – Local Energy Advice Partnership
The Local Energy Advice Partnership (LEAP) is a free advice service helping people keep warm and reduce their energy bills.
LEAP works in partnership with the council and has helped lots of people in the city reduce their energy bills. Advisors can:
- help find a cheaper energy deal
- fit free energy saving kit in your home (such as lightbulbs and draught-proofing)
- check if you are eligible for insulation or a new boiler
- give practical advice on heating systems and saving energy
- arrange a free money advice consultation to help with benefits, debt and other money problems
To book a free energy advice phone call or home visit:
- call free on 0800 060 7567
- apply online