Help with energy bills
Over two million working families are already struggling to pay their energy bills going into winter, reports uSwitch.
More than a quarter of households worry that they won’t be able to feed their family or afford Christmas presents if they turn the heating on.
Almost half of working families say they have struggled to pay their energy bills at some point.
What help is available?
There is a variety of help available through benefits, grants and schemes to help those who struggle with the costs of their energy bills.
Your electricity supplier may have signed up to the Warm Homes Discount Scheme which offers a one-off discount of £140 (for the Winter period 2016-2017) from your electricity bill.
A Winter Fuel payment is a one-off, tax-free payment of between £100 and £300 made during the winter to help with heating costs, it is made to households with someone over Pension Credit age.
This is money to help with fuel costs during periods of very cold weather. The period of cold weather must cover seven consecutive days, between 1 November and 31 March, when the average temperature must be zero degrees Celsius or below.
Some energy companies have set up charitable trusts to help customers pay for fuel arrears. Additionally if you are of pensionable age, living with a disability, chronic illness or visual or hearing impairment (or someone in your household is), ask your energy supplier if you are eligible for its Priority Services Register.
Making your home more energy efficient can make it warmer and reduce energy bills. There are several schemes that may be able to help you with energy efficiency - from the Government, energy suppliers, local councils and other sources.
Switching supplier takes a matter of minutes and can save up to £491 a year.
The HTW scheme aims to improve levels of warmth, comfort and quality of life for vulnerable people who have cold-related illnesses and need help with the installation of heating and insulation measures or repairs to existing systems or appliances which they can’t afford themselves.
The Energy Saving Trust has detailed information on how to save energy at home.
More information and Turn2us resources
If you are struggling to pay your energy bills, the Energy Schemes section of our website has information on the various schemes and grants that may be available to help towards the cost of energy.
If you are struggling financially, you can use our Benefits Calculator to check your entitlement to benefits and our Grants Search to see if you are eligible for help from a charitable fund, based on your personal circumstances and needs.