Paying Energy and Housing Bills, Grants and More

February 3, 2023 • Chris Bardsley

The cost of living crisis has had a huge impact on people’s finances, with energy bills rising by a staggering 54% in April 2022, 27% in October 2022 and a further 20% in April 2023.

This means that in April 2023 your energy bill will have more than doubled compared to March 2022. Affording energy bills, as well as handling the cost of mortgage payments or rent is difficult, to say the least.

Luckily, assistance with paying your energy and housing bills is out there. So we’ve put it all into one place - enabling you to access the grants and help you’re entitled to.

For grants and help with covering things like food and travel expenses, explore our Tackling the Cost of Living Crisis blog.

Government grants and schemes to help with energy bills

The Government’s Cost of Living Payment will see up to £900 sent to eligible households in three instalments to help tackle the cost of living. To check your eligibility and to learn when the payments will be sent, take a look at the Government’s Cost of Living Payment article.

Additional support with paying your energy bills is available in the shape of…

The scheme provides £400 to eligible households to help with their energy bills. All households with a domestic electricity connection in England, Scotland and Wales are eligible.

This discount is applied to household electricity bills for 6 months, starting in October 2022 - the payment schedule is as follows:

  • £66 in October and November

  • £67 in December, January, February and March

Households will receive the discount monthly, regardless of if they pay for their energy quarterly or use a payment card.

Eligible recipients could receive £150 off their electricity bill between October 2022 and March 2023. If you live in England and Wales, you’ll qualify if…

  • You receive the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit

  • Are on a low income and have high energy costs

People in England and Wales can check if they’re eligible for the discount on the Gov.UK website.

If you live in Scotland, you’ll qualify if…

  • You receive the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit

  • Are on a low income and meet your energy supplier’s criteria for the scheme

It’s important to remember, the money is not paid to you, but is a discount on your electricity bill. If your supplier provides you with both gas and electricity, you may be able to get a discount on your gas bill instead - contact your supplier directly to find out.

Recipients of certain benefits or Support for Mortgage Interest may be eligible for a Cold Weather Payment.

Payments will be made to eligible people if the average temperature is recorded as, or is forecast to be, below zero degrees celsius over 7 consecutive days.

The Cold Weather Payment Scheme offers recipients £25 for each 7 day period and runs from 1 November 2022 to 31 March 2023. Check if you can get a payment in your area.

Unfortunately, Scottish residents cannot get Cold Weather Payments; however, they might get an annual £50 Winter Heating Payment instead - this is paid regardless of the weather conditions in your area.

Speaking to your energy provider about getting help with energy bills

If you find yourself owing money to your provider, contact them to see if they offer a grant to help you pay for energy bills. These energy suppliers offer grants to their customers to help them pay off debts:

The British Gas Energy Trust offer grants to anyone, regardless of if they’re a customer or not. So if your provider is not listed above, don’t worry. You’ll have to speak to a debt adviser beforehand, but once you’ve done that, you can check if you can get a grant from the British Gas Energy Trust here.

The Fuel Bank Foundation

The Fuel Bank Foundation is the only UK charity to focus on the challenges of people living in fuel crisis. The foundation provides emergency financial support to people using pre-pay meters. This one-off emergency fund also helps by offering guidance and support to those who need it. Find out more about the Fuel Bank Foundation here.

Help with housing bills

It is important to remember that if you live in rented accommodation your rent cannot be increased without your permission or unless the tenancy agreement allows it.

If you’re struggling to pay your mortgage or rent, help is available through the services outlined below.

Homeowners may be eligible for financial assistance towards interest payments on their mortgage or loans that they have taken out for certain repairs or improvements.

Support for Mortgage Interest payments are made as a loan, which will need to be repaid as interest when the home is sold or ownership transferred.

Discretionary Housing Payments provide financial support to help with rent or housing costs and are eligible to those who receive housing benefits or the housing element of universal credit.

A Discretionary Housing Payment can be used for the following:

  • A rent shortfall

  • Rent deposits

  • Advanced rent payments if you need to move home

More guidance & support from Fair for You

The financial support we offer doesn’t stop at credit for your everyday essentials, the Fair for You blog includes actionable tips and information on all things money management.

As part of our ongoing mission to support disadvantaged people and those with difficult financial circumstances, the Fair for You blog consists of practical guidance and budgeting tips.

From How to Talk to Children about Money to advice on what loan sharks are and how to deal with them and even the hidden bills you had no idea you were paying.

*Please note we’ve used links to external websites. Although we make every effort to ensure these links are accurate, up to date and relevant, Fair for You Enterprise CIC cannot take responsibility for pages maintained by external providers. Views expressed on external sites we link to are not necessarily those of Fair for You Enterprise CIC. If you come across any external links that don’t work, we would be grateful if you could report them to the web content team.

The content of this blog does not constitute personal financial advice, and the views expressed in it are those of the contributor or author, which may not necessarily represent or reflect the views expressed by Fair for You Enterprise CIC.

This entry was posted in Finance, Budgeting Tips, How To's and Blog
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