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Grants and benefits to help you pay your energy bills

Posted By: Bluestone Credit Management

Posted: 08th November 2022

We recognise that utilities costs have risen significantly, causing hardship. If you are struggling to afford your energy bills or top up your prepayment meter, you might be able to take advantage of certain benefits, grants and help offered by the government and energy suppliers. The following summarises some of the available options. These apply to England, but many are universal across the UK and may be supported by the devolved governments.

Get a £400 energy discount from the government

The government will give every household £400 off their electricity bill. This is called the Energy Bills Support Scheme.

You don’t need to do anything to get the money and you won’t have to pay it back. 

You’ll get the £400 in 6 instalments starting from October 2022. You’ll get:

  •         £66 in October and November
  •         £67 in December, January, February and March

You’ll get the discount monthly, even if you pay for your energy quarterly or use a payment card.

How you get the discount will depend on how you pay for energy

If you pay by direct debit

Your supplier will either:

  •         reduce your direct debit amount
  •         refund the money to your bank account each month

Contact your supplier if you can’t see the deduction on your bill or statement, or the refund in your bank account.

If you have a smart prepayment meter

The payment will be added directly to your smart meter in the first week of each month.

If you have a traditional prepayment meter

You’ll get a voucher from your supplier by text message, email or post in the first week of each month. Your supplier will confirm how you’ll get the voucher nearer the time. You’ll only be able to use your voucher for your own energy account.

You’ll need to take the voucher to your usual top-up point to use it.

If you pay by standard credit or payment card

Your supplier will add the discount as a credit to your account in the first week of each month. The credit will appear on your account in the same way as if you had made a payment.

 

Get £150 back from the council to help pay your energy bills (England)

You can get £150 back from the council to help pay your energy bills – this is called a ‘rebate’. 

You’ll get the rebate if you pay council tax and your home is in council tax bands A to D. You can find your band on your council tax bill or check your council tax band on GOV.UK

You’ll only get the rebate if you’re the person who has to pay council tax for your household. Only one person per household will get the rebate.

You’ll get the rebate even if you:

  • get a Council Tax Reduction, including a full reduction, and your home is in bands A to D 
  • get the Disabled Band Reduction discount and your home is in bands A to E
  • are subject to immigration control and your biometric residence permit says “no recourse to public funds”

If you get benefits, the rebate won’t affect them.

If you can’t get the rebate

The council might still offer you financial help. For example, they might help you if you’re in council tax bands E to H and you get certain benefits. Contact your local council to see if they can help you – find your local council on GOV.UK.

How you’ll get the rebate

If you set up a direct debit to pay your council tax before the end of March 2022, your council should pay you automatically. Local councils will start to make the payments directly into bank accounts in April 2022.

If you don’t pay by direct debit or didn’t set up a direct debit before the end of March 2022, you should still get a rebate.

Your local council will contact you – they’ll probably ask you to complete an online form.

After you’ve given the council your details, they’ll make the payment as soon as possible. 

If you don’t hear from your council, contact them to check how you can claim the rebate. You should contact them before 30 September 2022 when the scheme closes. Find your local council on GOV.UK.

 

Warm Home Discount Scheme

If you get benefits, you might be able to get £150 off your electricity bill or £150 added to your prepayment meter. You don’t need to apply for the scheme – payments are automatic.

Check which energy supplier you were with on 21 August 2022. You can only get the discount if your supplier is in the scheme.

Additional schemes and information is available at the Citizens Advice Bureau.

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