Families urged to come forward for help with winter bills
ONE-OFF GRANTS are available to families and individuals on low incomes in the run-up to winter.
More than 20 energy companies offer the Warm Home Discount scheme, which gives eligible customers a one-off grant towards their electricity bill or prepayment meter during the winter.
Schemes are set to open from around August time, and the payment is expected to remain the same as previous years at £140.
Families on low incomes or welfare are encouraged to get ahead of the queue and register their interest now with the support of the Warm and Well in North Yorkshire project, which seeks to raise awareness of cold homes.
Although criteria for the grant varies according to the energy supplier, generally customers qualify automatically if they are in receipt of the Guarantee element of Pension Credit.
Households might also be eligible for the payment if they receive certain means-tested benefits or have an annual income of less than £16,000 and there is a child under-5, someone with a disability, or someone elderly living at the property. In this case residents have to apply for the £140.
Kate Urwin, the Yorkshire Energy Doctor, who is working with Warm and Well said:
“Customers can either apply online via their electricity supplier or call them up. It is a good idea to get in quickly as some schemes are first come first served and close when they have reached their maximum number of applicants.
“The £140 payment can go a long way to easing financial pressure on families during the winter, and is set up in such a way that it reaches those who need it the most.”
For support with the Warm Home Discount application as well as with wider energy matters such as debt or switching, families are also able to contact Kate directly. She can be reached on 07738 818391 or 01757 249100.
Families can also talk to Warm and Well in North Yorkshire for a wider variety of support around being cold at home. Please visit www.first4contact.org or call 01904 704177.