The Warm Home Discount.
What is the Warm Home Discount (WHD)?
The Warm Home Discount scheme is here to give some help to those who are potentially struggling to pay their energy bills during the cold winter months. It's a one-off payment of £150 that is used as a credit on your electricity bills.
Who's it funded by? Well it's actually funded by participating energy suppliers, like us, who are trying to help our vulnerable customers and make sure that they can enjoy a cosy home without worrying about the cost of the bills.
Who is eligible for the WHD scheme?
So in England and Wales there are now two Core Groups. There is “Core Group 1” those in receipt of the guaranteed element of pension credit and “Core Group 2” those on certain means tested benefits and the highest heating costs.
In Scotland there is still the "Core Group" and the "Broader Group". If you're in the Core Group then you may qualify for the Warm Home Discount scheme automatically, and the DWP will get in touch to let you know.
If you live in Scotland and think that you're part of the Broader Group then you'll need to apply for the WHD scheme.
What do I need to do if I'm in Core group 1 or 2?
You will get a letter from the government who arrange for your payment to be made by your energy suppler. Whoever supplies you on 13 August 2023 will be responsible for giving you your payment.
To receive the Warm Home Discount you'll need to be the named account holder or the partner of the account holder.
You may be part of the Core Group 1 if on the qualifying date you were receiving the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit in England and Wales (and Scotland).
You may be part of the Core Group 2 (In England and Wales) if on the qualifying date you were in receipt of means tested benefits with the highest heating costs.
The eligible benefits for Core Group 2 include Income-related Employment and Support Allowance, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, Universal Credit, Housing Benefit, Child Tax Credits and Working Tax Credits or Pension Credit Savings Credit.
If you are eligible the government will contact you directly over the winter of 2023/24.
If you haven’t been contacted by the beginning of January 2024, but think you do you qualify, you can find out more details about what to do on the WHD page on the government website.
Who falls into the Broader group (Scotland)?
The Broader group includes a wide range of people, including those who are in receipt of Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA), Income Support, Universal Credit, Housing Benefit, Pension Credit Savings Credit, Child Tax Credit or Working Tax Credit if their household income falls below a certain threshold or if you have a low household income.
There are also a number of other eligibility criteria, for example having parental responsibility for a child, receiving a disability benefit or you are of pensionable age.
How and when will I get the payment?
You'll receive the payment on your electricity account between October 2023 and March 2024.
If you've got a traditional (Not Smart) prepayment meter then we'll send you a top-up voucher to redeem.
Will I still get the Warm Home Discount if I switch supplier?
If you're in the Core group: The company that supplied your electricity on 13 August 2023 is responsible for giving you the discount, even if you’re now with another supplier. If we were your supplier and you've now left us, you’ll normally get this as either a cheque/cash voucher which can be cashed at the Post Office. If you still have a balance left to pay, we’ll put the discount onto your account to help you pay this off.
If you're in the Broader group: If you switch electricity supplier before we’ve given you the Warm Home Discount, you’ll need to contact your new supplier and see if you can apply with them instead, as their criteria may be different. Unfortunately, applications can’t be transferred between suppliers, so you’ll need to make a new application with your new supplier. We won't be able to give you the discount unless your electricity is supplied by us at the time we make the payment.
What happens if I move house?
If you're in the Core group: As long as we were your supplier on 13 August 2023, you'll still get the Warm Home Discount from us. If you still have a balance left to pay, we’ll put the discount onto your account to help you pay it off. If you’ve nothing left to pay, we’ll send you either a cheque/cash voucher which can be cashed at the Post Office. Please make sure you give us your new address, so we know where to send your cheque/cash voucher.
If you're in the Broader group: As your Warm Home Discount application's linked to the address and account number on your application, if you move house before the payment is made, your application will be closed.
How can I find out what benefits I receive?
To find out what benefits you’re currently receiving, you can contact the Pensions Service or Jobcentre Plus. We can only offer the Warm Home Discount if the electricity account holder or their partner receives the qualifying benefits. Unfortunately, if you don’t receive any benefits then you aren’t eligible for the scheme.