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Many people across the UK are struggling with their energy bills amidst the ongoing cost of living crisis. If you’re being affected by high energy bills, there are various grants and help schemes available depending on your circumstances.

There are also grants available if you want to improve your home’s energy efficiency - for example, if you want to upgrade your boiler or improve your insulation.

Remember that it’s always worth speaking to your supplier if you’re struggling to pay your bill. They may have other options than those listed here.

Energy meter with coins

What loans and grants do the government provide for energy?

Warm Home Discount

The Warm Home Discount is an annual £150 rebate on your electricity bill depending on if you receive certain means-tested benefits or a defined “low income”. If you’re eligible, you’ll usually receive the rebate automatically at some point between October and March. If you think you’re eligible but haven’t received anything, it’s worth checking by calling the Warm Home Discount phone line on 0800 030 9322.

The 2023-24 scheme opened on 16 October 2023.

Find out more about the Warm Home Discount here.

Cold Weather Payment

You could be eligible for the Cold Weather Payment If you’re getting certain benefits.

You should get this payment if the average temperature in your area is 0°C or below for 7 consecutive days.

You should get £25 for each 7-day spell of cold weather between 1 November and 31 March.

Winter Fuel Payment 

The Winter Fuel Payment is an annual payment that helps eligible customers with their energy bills over the winter. For the 2023-24 winter, you are eligible for the payment if:

  • You were born on or before 25 September 1957
  • You were living in the UK for at least one day during the week of 19-25 September 2022. 

You could get between £250 and £600 to help with your heating bills with the exact amount determined by further factors.

The Winter Fuel Payment is usually paid into your account automatically in either November or December.  

Child Winter Heating Assistance (Scotland)

This grant was first paid out in 2020. It’s designed to help children with a disability, young people and their families with the high costs of heating over winter. The grant is paid once a year for the winter of 2023-24, it is £235.70.

If you have more than 1 eligible child or young person in the household, they'll each get the payment.

Usually this grant is available from the end of November onwards.

Find out more at My Government Scotland.

Does my energy supplier provide energy grants or support?

If you’re in debt with your energy supplier, they might offer you a grant that you can use to pay it off.

Some of the energy suppliers that provide grants are:

If your supplier doesn’t offer any grants, you might be able to get one from the British Gas Energy Trust. Anyone can get this grant - you don’t have to be a British Gas customer.

What grants or loans are available for new boilers and insulation?

Energy Company Obligation (ECO)

The ECO is a government scheme that aims to make homes more energy efficient and help reduce carbon emissions.

The government works with energy suppliers to achieve this. The energy suppliers are then obligated to offer energy efficiency improvements to homes in the UK.

Medium and large energy suppliers (like British Gas) are obligated to fund these energy efficiency improvements. They also have targets to meet, so there’s more pressure on them to roll out these energy efficiency measures in UK homes.

Some of the energy efficiency improvements ECO could make are:

  • Installing a new boiler - if you qualify you could potentially get a free boiler
  • Installing better insulation - for example in your walls or loft.

You could be eligible for the scheme if you:

  • claim certain benefits and live in private housing
  • live in social housing

You can find the full list on the Ofgem website. Contact your local council or your energy supplier directly for more information on ECO.

If you’re not eligible you might still be able to benefit from the ECO. Visit the Simple Energy Advice website to see what you could qualify for. 

Nest (Wales)

This is a similar scheme to The Green Deal. Homes in Wales can apply for a loan to improve their energy efficiency and reduce energy bills.

If you’re eligible for the scheme you can get help with costs for a new boiler, central heating or insulation. Find out if you're eligible on the Nest website.

If you’re struggling to keep your home warm or cope with your energy bills, you can phone Nest free on 0808 808 2244.

Home Energy Efficiency Programmes for Scotland (HEEPS)

HEEPS is a Scottish government initiative aimed at increasing energy efficiency in homes and tackling fuel poverty.

The scheme’s run since 2013, and delivered energy efficiency improvements to 100,000 households according to the Scottish Government.

HEEPS is also run by ECO and local authorities. If you’re eligible for HEEPS, your local authority should contact you.

You can find out more on HEEPS at GOV.SCOT.

Home Energy Scotland Loan

If you're in Scotland you could get either a loan or cashback scheme from the Scottish government for installing energy efficiency and renewables measures. 

How much you could get depends on the measures you're installing. But you could receive support for:

  • Solid wall insulation, insulated doors, most kinds of wall insulation.
  • Wind or hydro turbines, heat pumps, solar panels.

You can find the full list of what you can get a loan for and details of more energy loans at GOV.SCOT.