Warm Home Discount Scheme

If you’re struggling with high energy prices over the winter, you might be able to get £140 off your electricity bill through the Warm Home Discount Scheme. Here’s what you need to know about the scheme for 2021/2022.

If you’re struggling with high energy prices over the winter, you might be able to get £140 off your electricity bill through the Warm Home Discount Scheme. Here’s what you need to know about the scheme for 2021/2022.

Sofia Hutson
From the Energy team
4
minute read
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Posted 18 JANUARY 2022

What is the Warm Home Discount Scheme?

It’s a government scheme that’s regulated by Ofgem and is designed to give financial help to people who struggle to pay their energy bills over the winter months. 

The Warm Home Discount is a one-off discount on your winter electricity bill, between October and March. 

If you’re eligible, you won’t actually receive a payment. Instead, you’ll get a rebate of £140, which will be credited to your electricity account and will come directly from your energy supplier.

Am I eligible for the Warm Home Discount Scheme?

There are two ways to qualify:

  • If you’re getting the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit you should automatically qualify for the discount, as long as your name or your partner’s name is on the energy bill and your energy supplier is part of the scheme. This is known as the ‘core group’.

You can check the list of participating suppliers on gov.uk.

  • You’re on a low income and meet your energy supplier’s criteria for the scheme. This is known as the ‘broader group’.

If you’re not sure whether you’re eligible or not, contact your energy supplier directly. You may be able to get the discount on your gas bill instead if your supplier provides you with both gas and electricity (dual fuel). 

The discount will not affect your Cold Weather Payment or  Winter Fuel Payment.

Can I still get the Warm Home Discount if I use a pre-pay or pay-as-you-go meter?

Yes. Contact your energy supplier to find out how you’ll get the discount. Usually, it’s a voucher that can be used to top up your meter. 

Did you know?
The August 2021 energy price cap increase of £139 could push two in five families into debt this winter. According to Compare the Market research, annual energy costs need only rise by £76 to tip many families into financial difficulty.

How do I claim for the Warm Home Discount?

If you’re getting the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit, you should receive a letter between October and December to confirm that you qualify for that year. Your energy supplier will then automatically add the discount to your energy bill before the end of the March. There’s no need to apply, as the process is automatic.

If you hadn’t received a letter by the end of the year and you think you may be eligible, you can contact the Warm Home Discount Team on 0800 731 0214 Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm. 

If you’re on a low income, you’ll need to contact your energy supplier directly to find out if you’re eligible and how to apply. The name of your supplier will be on your energy bill.

Be aware that most energy suppliers offer the discount on a ‘first come, first served’ basis and numbers are limited, so it’s important to apply early. 

Contact your energy supplier to find out more.

What happens if I switch energy supplier?

If you switch energy supplier before the Warm Home Discount is paid, you may no longer be eligible for the rebate with your original supplier, and may need to apply for the scheme with your new energy supplier instead.  

Eligibility criteria may differ between energy suppliers, so be sure to check the details before switching. We make this easier for you by confirming whether a supplier participates in the Warm Home Discount Scheme.

Frequently asked questions

What other home energy schemes are available?

Other Government schemes to help with home energy bills this winter include: 

  • Winter Fuel Payment – a government scheme to help pensioners with winter weather bills. If you were born on or before 26 September 1955 you could get between £100 and £300  to help pay your heating bills. 

Find out more in our guide to the Winter Fuel Payment

  • Cold weather payments – if you’re on certain benefits, you could get £25  each day that the temperature in your area is zero degrees or below for seven consecutive days between 1 November 2021 and 31 March 2022. 

Find out more in our guide to Cold Weather Payments

  • Winter fuel support – in Wales, eligible families on certain benefits can receive a £100 annual payment towards their fuel bills from their local authority.
  • Child Winter Heating Assistance – a payment of £202 for each eligible disabled child and young person under 19 living in Scotland.  
  • Household Support Fund – a government fund to support households struggling with their energy bills following the coronavirus pandemic. Funds will be made available to local authorities to distribute to those who need help paying for essentials like energy over winter 2021/2022.

Will the Warm Home Discount Scheme affect other payments I receive?

No. The Warm Home Discount won’t affect other payments you receive, for example, the Cold Weather Payment or Winter Fuel Payment.

What else can I do if I’m struggling to pay my energy bills?

With the recent hikes in energy prices, many customers may be struggling with their energy bills this winter. First of all, don’t panic. Contact your energy supplier directly and let them know. Under Ofgem rules, they are obliged to offer support and help, like a feasible and realistic repayment plan you can both agree on. 

Ofgem has also set out rules for suppliers to offer emergency credit to customers with prepayment meters who are struggling to top up. 

If you’re having problems paying your utility bills, contact your energy supplier and ask to be put on their priority services register. It’s a free service which can offer vulnerable customers extra help and support in difficult circumstances.

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