Last Winter was a real struggle for many of us when it came to keeping our homes warm, especially when the ‘Beast from the East’ hit. If you’re on a limited budget, heating your home can be expensive and a real worry.
Luckily there are a number of grants and discounts available that you may be eligible for to help with these costs, including the Warm Home Discount.
The Warm Home Discount
The Warm Home Discount is worth £140. It is a UK government scheme created to help people manage the extra costs associated with heating their home during winter. It is managed by your energy supplier.
Not all suppliers offer the discount as only those with over 250,000 customers are obligated.
If your application is successful your supplier should credit your account between October 2018 and March 2019. If you’re on a prepayment meter, you’ll get a voucher which you can use to top up your meter key with the credit.
Eligibility is divided between the Core Group and the Broader Group.
The Core group is made up of those who receive Pension Credit. If this is you, the credit will be automatically added to your energy bill.
If you don’t receive it, firstly check that your supplier offers it, and that your name and address are the same on your energy bills as they are with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).
You should usually have received a letter during the summer if you’re going to be given the Warm Home Discount automatically. If you receive Pension Credit, and you’ve not had a letter from the DWP, it’s important to get in touch with your energy company to let them know.
The broader group criteria differ slightly between suppliers. However, you will most likely qualify if you receive some sort of means-tested benefit and/or are on a low income.
How to apply
Each supplier has a limited pot of money set aside for the scheme, it is distributed on a first come, first served basis. You can apply by either contacting your supplier by phone, or some suppliers have applications available on their websites.
In the table below you can see which suppliers offer each part of the scheme and how to apply. Please note we will update this table regularly to indicate when each supplier is open to applications.
|Supplier||Core Group||Broader Group||Comments|
|EDF Energy||✔||✔||Opening September|
|First Utility||✔||✔||Can register Interest|
|M&S Energy||✔||✘||Apply with SSE|
|OVO / Boost||✔||✔|
|Robin Hood Energy||✔||✘|
|Scottish Gas||✔||✔||Autumn 2018|
|Utilita||✔||✔||Open for 1 week from August 8th|
If your supplier is not on the list, it’s worth calling them to check if they offer the discount. If you’re not sure if you’re eligible, or you need help applying, book a free and impartial home visit with a Cosy Kingdom energy advisor. It may also be worth looking at switching to a cheaper supplier who also offers the discount if you’re not with one on the list above.
Cold Weather Payments
A cold weather payment of £25 is made automatically to those on certain benefits if the temperature in the area in which they live drops below 0°C for 7 consecutive days.
You are only eligible for a cold weather payment between 1st November and 31st March each year.
Qualifying benefits include Pension Credit and Universal Credit, or benefits being replaced by Universal Credit such as Job Seekers Allowance, Employment Support Allowance or Income Support.
Winter Fuel Payments
The Winter Fuel Payment is a UK government payment of between £100 and £300 which is there to help with your energy bills. A Winter Fuel Payment is automatically paid to those who receive a state pension, the payment is made automatically before Christmas each year.
To receive the payment you need to have been born before 5th May 1953. If you’ve claimed before you shouldn’t need to do anything. If you’ve never claimed, but are eligible, you can find out how to claim by visiting the Government website.
Help from Cosy Kingdom
If you need help applying for the Warm Home Discount you can drop into the High Street Hub at 254a High Street, Kirkcaldy between 10am and 4pm Wednesday – Saturday for help with the application, or drop by and speak to one of our advisors at any of our events. Please remember to bring along a bill or account number otherwise we may not be able to help you then.
If you’d rather, you can book a free home energy advice visit, where in addition to help with the Warm Home Discount, we can help you find practical and affordable ways to save energy at home.
You can book a free and impartial energy advice visit in the comfort of your own home via our booking form.
If you think you may be eligible for any of the benefits mentioned here and aren’t yet claiming them, we offer free benefits checks too.