Getting Help With Your Park Home Energy Bills
Getting help with your park home energy bills this winter is a high priority for many residents. Keeping warm is essential for all of us and with rising energy costs, it can present an even greater challenge than usual. For those who qualify, there is help available both for fuel bills and for some measures to make your home more energy efficient and easier to keep warm.
This guide is designed to help you work out whether you qualify for any of the schemes available to help with your energy bills and to introduce you to what they are. Find out if you can get government help to pay your gas and electricity bills, including the Cold Weather Payment, Winter Fuel Payment or Fuel Direct.
As long as your park home is your main residence and is not a holiday home, the information here applies.
Financial Help with Park Home Energy Bills
Cold Weather Payment
This is made to qualifying households to help with extra costs when it is particularly cold.
From November 1st to March 31st, you receive £25 for every seven days in a row that the temperature falls below 0°Centigrade (recorded or forecast).
Receipt of the following benefits may qualify you for the cold weather payment:
- Pension Credit
- Income Support
- Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Universal Credit
- Support for Mortgage Interest
The cold weather payment is nearly always paid if you receive Pension Credit. You do not need to apply for cold weather payments but you should inform your local Job Centre Plus that you are receiving one of the benefits listed above. If you qualify and there is a seven-day period of below zero temperatures, payment is made automatically into the same bank account which receives the benefit. Other factors are considered when deciding your eligibility, such as if you have a disabled child, a child under five, if you are disabled or if you receive pensioner premium.
Winter Fuel Allowance
Winter Fuel Payments of between £100 and £300 are available to people over 66 (born before September 26 1955), who receive a state pension or other social security benefit. (This does not include universal credit, council tax allowance, child benefit or housing benefit).
The exact amount depends upon your household circumstances:
- £100 if you’re over 66 and live with someone else who qualifies
- £200 if you’re over 66 and live alone (or with others who don’t qualify)
- £150 if you’re over 80 and live with someone else who is over 80 and qualifies
- £200 if you’re over 80 and live with someone under 80 who qualifies
- £300 if you’re over 80 and live alone (or with others who don’t qualify).
If you have claimed winter fuel payments in the past you will not need to reapply. Payments should be made in November or December. If you haven’t received the payment by 13 January 2022, contact the Winter Fuel Payment Centre (0800 731 0160).
If you are living abroad, you need to have been in the UK for at least one day in the qualifying week (20–26 September 2021) to be eligible.
You are not eligible if you:
- Live in Cyprus, France, Greece, Gibraltar, Malta, Portugal or Spain (owing to their warmer climates)
- Were in prison for the whole of the qualifying week
- Lived in care and received certain benefits
- Have been receiving free treatment in hospital for more than a year.
The Warm Home Discount
This is a one-off discount taken directly from your energy bill at the discretion of your energy provider. Check with the energy supplier to your park home to see if they are part of this scheme. It is available to two groups of people termed the ‘core group’ and the ‘broader group’.
You are in the core group if you get the guaranteed element of pension credit. If this is you then your energy company should write to you to let you know you qualify and how to claim your discount.
It is a little more complicated to work out if you are in the broader group. Check with your supplier to see if you qualify. You may be eligible if you:
- are on a low income and have a disability
- have a long-term illness
- are a parent with young children
- get certain means-tested benefits.
ECO – Energy Company Obligation
It is now a requirement for energy providers to help households make their homes more energy efficient. Most newer park homes are already constructed with a high level of energy efficiency so this will probably only apply for those who are living in older park homes.
There are many criteria by which energy companies decide who they can assist in this way so it is best to approach yours to find out. If you fall into one of the categories listed below, you are more likely to qualify.
- If you get the Warm Home Discount in the ‘core’ group
- Receive eligible benefits and fit the income requirements
- Live in social housing with an EPC rating of E or lower
- You meet the criteria set by your Local Authority.
We hope this short guide helps you to get the help you need and to keep warm and cosy in your park home this winter. Please note that this information is correct at the time of writing and is subject to change.
This is a marketing article from Park Home Assist, multi award-winning providers of residential park home insurance. If you would like to speak to an advisor regarding insurance for your park home, please contact our friendly team in our Northampton office on 01604 946 796.
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