Community Energy Winter Support – energy advice for individuals

People across Community Energy London are coming together to make sure that the best examples of initiatives across London to reduce energy, carbon emissions and bills are spread over the whole Capital. 

CEL members are in the forefront of Energy cafes, providing items for ‘small measures’ that make all the difference to the comfort and affordability of warmth in homes and making sure people can find the advice they need.  

Even prior to the announcement of the annual price doubling of energy bills from 1st October, CEL was working on a project funded by the GLA regarding ‘Fuel Poverty and Energy Advice’ and has created the Community Energy Winter Support (CEWS) programme to ramp up the work focussed on those who are having to choose between ‘Eat or Heat’.   

Help in a crisis

  • Citizens Advice have information on grants and benefits to help you pay your energy bills here, and details of which energy suppliers offer grants to their customers:
  • Money Helper Debt advice has this tool to locate debt advisors across the UK.
  • The Greater London Authority has this ‘Help in a Crisis web page, which also points to Turn2Us, a charity giving practical advice for those struggling financially.
  • Lightening Reach connects people to the support they need.
  • Your Energy Provider – Most energy providers have help schemes for customers who cannot pay. 
    • Charis Grants manage schemes for E.on, British Gas, EDF, Scottish Power, SSE or Ovo. 
    • For other suppliers check for help on their websites, such as Octopus. 

Help with bills from the Government

  • TheHelp with your bills website lists all the payments the Government will make to help with energy bills. Some are automatic, but some require an application.

Other sources of advice and help

  • Money Saving Expert has aCost of living help guide 
  • Warmer Homes Advice Service  points vulnerable Londoners and those on low incomes to free local energy advice services funded by the Mayor.  These include, for some Boroughs, SHINE and LEAP which are energy and money saving advice services for people struggling to keep warm.
  • Muswell Hill Sustainability Group have created a leaflet for Haringey residents.
  • Age UK connects with older people, their carers, and their families, to support them with information and advice.
  • Warmer Homes The Mayor of London’s Warmer Homes programme provides grants of between £5,000 and £25,000for free heating, insulation and ventilation improvements for low income Londoners who own their own homes or rent privately, with low energy performance homes. 
  • Warm Home Discount – A one-off payment to reduce eligible customers’ bills over the winter months. This winter (2022-23), it is £150. You will get the payment automatically if your electricity supplier is part of the Warm Home Discount scheme and you or your partner receive the Guarantee Credit portion of Pension Credit.
  • Sustainable Warmth Competition includes the Boiler Upgrade Scheme, Homes Upgrade Grant and Local Authority Delivery Scheme.
    • The ‘Boiler Upgrade Scheme’  – Encourages property owners to install low carbon heating systems such as heat pumps or biomass. Grants of £5,000 or £6,000 can be accessed to help with upfront costs. Haringey Climate Forum has a step by step guide to applying to the Scheme, 
  • ECO 4 ECO4 is aimed at owner-occupied poorly insulated homes, with occupiers on benefits and will also support inefficient social housing and private rented housing (if the landlord permits it). Occupiers can apply for ECO4 work if they satisfy income requirements and receive certain benefits: Apply to any of these suppliers providing ECO4 here, regardless of who provides the energy.
  • Energy Bill Discount – £400 off energy bills for households in Great Britain from this October. This automatic, non-repayable discount will be applied in six instalments between October 2022 and March 2023 to help households through winter. 
  • Pensioner Cost of Living Payment – If you’re entitled to a Winter Fuel Payment for winter 2022 to 2023, you will get an extra £300 for your household paid with your normal payment from November 2022. This is in addition to any Cost of Living Payment you get with your benefit or tax credits. 
  • Cost of Living Payment – Households on means tested benefits, including Universal Credit, Pension Credit and Tax Credits, will receive a payment of £650 this year automatically in two instalments, one in summer and another in the autumn, and is in addition to the £400 discount.  
  • Disability Cost of Living Payment – Individuals on disability benefits   will receive a one-off £150 payment in September to help with extra costs, such as for specialist equipment or transport – in addition to the £650 Cost of Living Payment for disabled people who also receive means tested benefits. 
  • Muswell Hill Sustainability Group has created a leaflet for Haringey residents with a sample of links for each measure