Households have just weeks left to get £100 free cash to help with essential bills – how to claim

Close-up of a woman holding modern polymer ten, twenty and fifty pound notes.

THOUSANDS of households have just weeks left to get £100 free cash to help pay for essential bills.

The cash support is provided through the Household Support Fund worth £421million.

You can get free cash to help with the cost of living crisis

The funding runs until the end of March, which is the deadline for which councils must dish out the available money to hard-up households.

The scheme was set up in 2021, and extended for the second time last year in the March budget.

It was extended again in November to help those on the lowest incomes with the rising cost of living.

Each council gets a different portion of funding depending on the size of the catchment area, population, and need.

Grants on offer vary by location so you’ll have to check to see what you can get and how your council will pay you.

You’ll usually need to be on a low income to receive the help.

Eligible households can get £100 free if they live in the Bury council catchment area.

Over February and March, the council has been issuing £100 payout vouchers, which you can claim from the Post Office, for households who are in receipt of council tax support and Employment Support Allowance, but who don’t get Universal Credit.

Bury Council hasn’t confirmed specifically what you can spend your vouchers on, but we’ve asked and will update this story with more information.

But it will likely be to help households pay for essential bills.

If you haven’t received a voucher or you’re having issues with yours, Bury Council said to fill out this form on its website.

Vouchers will be handed out by the end of March.

What are councils offering and who is eligible?

Eligibility requirements for the help will vary depending on where you live – so check directly with your council if you could get the cash help.

For example, residents eligible for the scheme who live in Middlesborough could get between £50 and £100.

Ashford Borough Council is using its share of the fund to make bank transfers to eligible households worth £200.

Residents in North Yorkshire should have started receiving letters in the post from last month about free £325 supermarket vouchers.

Meanwhile, Guildford Borough Council sent out letters to households in line for payments worth up to £400 before Christmas.

How do I apply for the Household Support Fund?

Some households will be notified that they can apply for the cash help and others will receive the cash automatically.

Again, your council will set out whether or not you need to apply for the free cash.

Find your local council using the’s online tool and ask your authority for more information.

What other support is available?

As part of the Autumn Statement, it was revealed millions on benefits and Universal Credit will receive an extra one-off £900.

Eight million households currently get cost-of-living payments worth up to £650.

Pensioners have started getting a £300 one-off payment.

The current pensioner cost of living payment is being handed out to millions on a low income.

You qualify under the current rules if you normally get the winter fuel payment, but this could change under the new rules.

The £300 cost of living payment is paid on top of the other winter support.

You’ll need to be:

  • born on or before 25 September 1956
  • have lived in the UK for at least one day during the week of 19 to 25 September 2022 in what is known as the “qualifying week”

Struggling families are eligible for the Warm House Discount to help them tackle the cost of living.

The scheme is where eligible households can get £150 off their electricity bill each winter – but you’ll have to wait until the colder months to get the money off.

Households in England and Wales don’t need to apply to get the cash and they’ll automatically qualify if they are receiving certain benefits.

You can read more about who’s eligible here.

There are also plenty of energy grants and schemes open to help you out if you’re struggling:

  • British Gas Energy Trust Individuals and Family Fund
  • British Gas Energy Trust
  • EDF Customer Support Fund
  • E.ON and E.ON Next Grants
  • Octopus Energy Assist Fund
  • OVO Energy
  • Scottish Power Hardship Fund

There’s also a one-off fuel voucher from your energy supplier if you’re on a prepayment meter.