Thousands of households can apply for £150 free cash support for energy bills – check if you’re eligible

Wide angle image depicting a senior man's hand holding an energy bill while the other hand checks the numbers on a calculator. The table is strewn with documents and also a laptop. Room for copy space.

THOUSANDS of struggling households can get a £150 discount on their energy bill this winter.

Several energy companies offer the money off bills through the Warm Home Discount scheme.

Thousands of households can now apply for energy bill support

The discount is available to those on the lowest incomes to help with rising costs.

Households in England and Wales don’t need to apply to get the cash and they’ll automatically qualify if they were receiving certain benefits on or before Sunday, August 21.

But in Scotland, some customers will need to apply for cash – and applications are open now.

How do I secure the discount in Scotland?

The Scottish Government has refused to renew their Warm Home Discount scheme in-line with England and Wales’ new application-free scheme.

Households in Scotland will have to follow the rules set out in the legacy scheme.

This means they’ll likely still be a “core group” that’ll receive an automatic payment and a “broader group” who’ll have to apply for the scheme with their energy provider.

If you or your partner receive pension credit, you are part of the core group.

You are considered part of the broader group if you or your partner are disabled, responsible for a child under five, or care for a disabled child and claim any of the following benefits:

  • Income Support or income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Income-based Jobseekers Allowance
  • Universal Credit, and earnings less than £1,418 per month
  • Child Tax Credits, and earnings less than £17,005 per year

But you’ll need to check with your energy supplier directly to see the eligibility requirement and details on how to apply.

More bill help

Try not to panic if you’re not eligible for the Warm Home Discount – there are a lot of funds going at the moment for that very reason

Firstly, though, talk to your energy supplier – if you’re falling behind with payments there’s a lot they can do to help.

They might offer support such as a payment plan review, repayment plans or payment breaks.

Consider a hardship fund – your supplier may have access to charitable trusts and funds.

Contact them and ask to see what is available, though the application process is very in-depth.

You could earn up to £1,500 from the British Gas fund, for instance.

There’s also the cold weather payment, which starts from November 1 onwards and continues through the winter months.

Temperatures drop dramatically from November to February, so it should help people heat their homes more comfortably.

You get £25 for each seven-day period where the weather is below zero Celsius on average during this time frame.

You can check if your area has had a cold weather payment by popping your postcode into the government’s tool now.

You can check if you’re eligible here first.

Winter Fuel Payment – This is available to those who:

  • were born on or before 25 September 1956
  • 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”

Most payments are made automatically in November or December. You should be paid by 13 January 2023, so keep an eye on your bank account.

Universal Credit bonus – Millions of claimants could get a free £10 bonus to help them over the festive period.

While it isn’t the biggest amount, still help after the energy price cap hike was announced.

It will be paid automatically.

Energy bill discount – Millions of households started receiving a £400 energy bill discount from October 1.

The payment will be dished out by your energy supplier and will be split across six discounts between October and March next year.

Households will receive a £66 energy bill discount in October and November and a discount worth £67 in December, January, February and March.

Do you have a money problem that needs sorting? Get in touch by emailing [email protected]