Help is at hand for fuel bills

Paul Lewis outlines the schemes protecting people from major price hikes

Published: March 4, 2022 at 11:33 am

The Chancellor has promised to help with the big rises in electricity and gas bills from April.


There will be a £150 rebate off your council tax in April if you live in a band A, B, C, or D home. The band will be on your bill. Disabled people in band E homes who pay band D council tax through the disability reduction scheme will get the £150, at least in England. You will get the payment even if your council tax is reduced or zero, as it is for many low-income pensioners. It will be paid directly into bank accounts. If the council does not have your bank details, it will ask for them.

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The discount scheme applies in England, Scotland and Wales. But in Scotland and Wales the £150 will also be given to council-tax payers in homes in band E or above who get council-tax reduction because their income is low. In Northern Ireland, where there is no council tax, a similar scheme is expected to be announced for ratepayers.

In England, if you are in a band E, F, G, or H home but are struggling financially, there will be a discretionary fund to help. If you are exempt – this is mainly houses full of students – you can also apply to the discretionary fund. Ask your council. Scotland and Wales have discretionary help schemes, too.

Additionally, in October there will be a £200 discount deducted from all electricity bills in England, Scotland and Wales – but from April 2023 the Government will start taking this money back: around £40 a year for five years will be added to every electricity bill. Northern Ireland will get money to operate a similar scheme.

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Next winter the Warm Home Discount in England, Scotland and Wales will be increased by £10 to £150. Pensioners who get the “Guarantee Credit” part of Pension Credit will get it automatically. Other pensioners in fuel poverty and on means-tested benefits who currently need to apply should also get it automatically.

More details will be published over the coming weeks.

Paul Lewis presents Money Box on Radio 4.



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