If you are a pensioner or are classed as a vulnerable customer, you may be entitled to extra help with your gas and electricity bills during the winter months, including the Warm Home Discount Scheme.
This page explains what the Warm Home Discount Scheme is, who is eligible, and how to claim it.
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What is the Warm Home Discount Scheme?
If you are on a low income, you may qualify for the Warm Home Discount Scheme. This gives a rebate to pensioners on low incomes and some other customers on low incomes. The rebate is £140 on your electricity bill for winter 2014-2015.
The Warm Home Discount Scheme is run by energy companies. The largest ones are required by law to offer this rebate.
Who qualifies for a Warm Home Discount?
In 2014-2015 if you are a pensioner on 12 July 2014, you can qualify for a warm home discount if you:
- get the Guarantee Credit part of Pension Credit – even if you get the Savings Credit part as well.
Your name or your partner’s name must be on your electricity bill, and your energy company must be taking part in the Warm Home Discount scheme.
- More information on energy suppliers taking part in the Warm Home Discount Scheme at www.gov.uk
If you are on a low income
If you are on a low income, it will be up to your supplier to decide whether you can get the Warm Home Discount. You may be eligible if you're on a low income and you have a disability or long-term illness, or children. The actual criteria used will vary depending on your supplier.
Each supplier has their own rules about who else can get the discount. You should check with your supplier to see if you can get it.
How to claim a Warm Home Discount
If you are a pensioner eligible for the Warm Home Discount, the Department for Work and Pensions will try to make sure you get this discount automatically. If you are missed out, you can ask for the discount directly from your supplier.
If you are on a low income, you will need to contact your energy supplier for details of whether you are eligible. If you believe you are eligible, you will then need to apply directly to your supplier.
- More information on applying to your energy supplier for the Warm Home Discount at www.gov.uk or ring the Warm Home Discount Scheme helpline on 0345 603 9439 , Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 4.30pm.
The Home Heat Helpline
The Home Heat Helpline is a service for vulnerable customers struggling to pay their bills. It is funded by the energy suppliers, and provides information on grants, payment schemes and benefits that may be available as well as basic advice about energy efficiency.
Telephone: 0800 336699 (freephone)
The Energy Saving Trust
The Energy Saving Trust has an online home energy check to find out where you could make savings on your bills. You can also contact your local Energy Saving Trust advice centre for help:
Telephone: 0300 123 1234 (freephone)
Charis grants has details of schemes run by energy suppliers to help some customers in debt at www.charis.grants.com.