Help for Residents
There is often support available to help residents within Surrey access grants for energy efficiency improvements or to help with fuel costs.
A comprehensive guide has been produced by Ofgem, highlighting all the financial support available:
Cost of Living Assistance
In a latest press release, the government has begun to outline details of the payments expected to be received by millions of households throughout 2022.
In addition to the £400 energy credit payments announced by the government earlier this month, low income households on means-tested benefits will receive £650 towards the cost of living. The cost of living payment applies to all households receiving Universal Credit, Income-based Jobseekers Allowance, Income-related Employment and Support Allowance, Income Support, Working Tax Credit, Child Tax Credit and Pension Credit.
According to the article, the £650 will come in the form of two lump sum payments. Eligible households can expect to receive the initial payment of £326 from mid-July until the end of the month.
A disability payment of £150 will also be sent to household on both means-tests and non-means tested disability benefits and Pensioners who receive the government’s Winter Fuel Payment can also expect an extra one-off payment of up to £300 in the autumn. It is so far reported that none of the support payments will need to be paid back.
Read the press release document here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/over-eight-million-households-to-get-new-cost-of-living-payment-from-14-july
Local Authority Delivery grant funding
The Action Surrey partnership was awarded £9.1 million under the government's Green Homes Grant Local Authority Delivery scheme (Phase 1) to help up to 600 eligibe households to save money on their energy bills, and a further £3m under Phase 2. These schemes offered full funding is available for eligible households to install a range of home energy efficiency improvements including insulation and renewables.
Applications for this funding has now closed but we anticipate further funding soon.
To find out more, visit the news section on our website, or call us on 0800 783 2503.
The Energy Company Obligation 4 (ECO4)
ECO4 is a government energy efficiency scheme to help tackle fuel poverty and help reduce carbon emissions. Medium to larger energy supplier fund the installation of energy efficiency measures in households across Britain.
The final scheme guidance is currently in consultation. Until the scheme is fully operational, Action Surrey cannot provide guidance on ECO4.
Support for Fuel Payments
Warm Homes Discount
This is a discount of £140 from your electricity bills, usually applied between September and March. It is not paid to you but is a one-off discount on your electricity bill.
Are you eligible?
- If you receive the Guaranteed Credit element of Pensions Credit.
- If you have a low income or receive certain means-tested benefits.
Only certain energy suppliers are able to offer this discount so if you think you are eligible, check with your supplier to make sure you are receiving it.
If your supplier is not part of the scheme, you can switch to a supplier who is by visiting an Ofgem Accredited energy tariff comparison site such as uSwitch.
Cold Weather Payments
This is a payment if the average temperature in your area is recorded at, or forecast to be, 0 degrees Celsius or below for 7 consecutive days.
You will receive £25 for each 7 day period of very cold weather between 1st November and 31st March.
Are you eligible?
- If you receive certain benefits (see a full list here)
- If you receive Support for Mortgage Interest
Winter Fuel Payment
This is a payment of £100 - £300 to help you pay for your heating bills. You usually get a Winter Fuel Payment automatically between November and December if you are eligible. If you are eligible but do not get paid automatically, you need to make a claim. All money received is tax-free and will not affect your other benefits.
Visit the Government Winter Fuel Payment website to find out more.
Priority Service Register (PSR)
If you qualify for any of the above payments, you may want to be added to the PSR. PSR is a free service provided by suppliers and network operators to customers in need. To find out more, visit the OfGem website for more info.
Your Local Borough Council
Grants and support are sometimes available from your local Borough or County Council. It may be worth checking with them if you feel you need assistance to pay for essential home improvements.
Other Financial Support
If you have debts on your fuel bills and are struggling to pay them back, free advice is available from your local Citizen’s Advice Bureau.
There can also be help from energy trusts such as British Gas Energy Trust or E.on Energy Fund which are open to anyone, regardless of whether you are their customer.
Further help can also come from your own energy supplier or charities such as Charis.
If there are no grants available to you, it is possible to go down the route of a loan to help pay for energy-saving improvements over time. The Parity Trust is a not-for-profit organisation that offers various tailored home improvement loan packages.
More information on energy saving measures
For more information contact Action Surrey on 0800 783 2503 or email [email protected].
Alternatively, fill out our enquiry form online to obtain a survey and no-obligation quote.