Every British home can also get a smart meter from their energy supplier free of charge with the idea being that using the meters will help you to think more about your energy use and help you to reduce bills by providing more accurate billing.
To learn more about how a smart meter could help reduce your bills, visit Smart Energy GB where you’ll find useful information and details on how to get one from your supplier.
Energy saving support
The simplest way to save money is to reduce the amount of energy we use. The Energy Saving Trust has a simple list of 'quick wins' to help you be smarter with your energy use.
The following organisations also offer energy saving advice:
- Age UK: Energy advice for older people | Age UK
- British Gas Trust Fund: British Gas Energy Support Fund
- Energy Projects Plus: Energy Projects Plus (epplus.org.uk) (if you live in Merseyside or Cheshire)
- Green Doctors: Green Doctor, helping UK residents stay warm, stay well, and save energy. - Groundwork
How we can help
Use our Benefits Calculator to check what you can claim.
Energy tariffs decide how much you pay for your energy use. It’s worth contacting your supplier to check what tariff you’re on and if there’s a cheaper option that would suit you.
With energy prices remaining high, it might not be possible to switch to another provider at the moment. However, as prices come down and the market settles down, you could use price comparison websites to check whether it’s worth switching.
Some energy companies also offer schemes or grants to help with home heating and energy costs. Contact your supplier to find out what they offer.
Citizens Advice has a list of grants and benefits available from energy suppliers.
More financial advice is available at the National Energy Action Warm and Safe Homes Advice service.
NEA Warm and Safe Homes (WASH) Helpline is a free helpline service open Monday-Friday, 10am-12 noon Telephone: 0800 3047159.
You could get £150 off your electricity bill in winter with the Warm Home Discount Scheme. The money is not paid to you. It’s a one-off discount on your electricity bill, usually between October and March.
You may be able to get the discount on your gas bill instead if your supplier provides you with both gas and electricity, and you’re eligible. Contact your supplier to find out.
To check if you’re eligible for the scheme go to: Warm Home Discount.
If you were born before 26 September 1956, you could get between £250 and £600 to help with your heating bills. The amount you get includes a ‘Pensioner Cost of Living Payment’. This is between £150 and £300. You’ll get this extra amount in winter 2023 to 2024. This is in addition to any other Cost of Living Payments you get with your benefit or tax credits.
Most payments are made automatically in November or December. If you’re eligible, you’ll get a letter telling you:
- how much you’ll get;
- which bank account it will be paid into (usually the same account as your state pension or other benefits).
If you think you’re eligible but didn’t get a letter or the money hasn’t been paid into your account, contact the Winter Fuel Payment Centre.
You may get a Cold Weather Payment if you’re getting certain benefits or Support for Mortgage Interest. You’ll get a payment if the average temperature in your area is recorded as, or forecast to be, zero degrees Celsius or below over seven consecutive days.
You’ll get £25 for each seven-day period of very cold weather between 1 November and 31 March. Check if you can get a payment in your area.
If you're vulnerable (for example, if you’re a pensioner, disabled person or have a medical condition) you could ask to be put on your supplier’s Priority Services Register. This service gives extra help if, for example, you have a power cut.
If you live alone in a one or two bedroom property, you might benefit from having a water meter. With a water meter, fixed bills become a thing of the past. Your charges are based on the water you use, so the more water you save, the more money you save.
To check if you could save money on your water bill or if you want to know more about water meters, contact your water supplier. If you’re struggling to pay your water bill the water companies offer a range of help to pay schemes. To find out more, contact your water supplier (listed below).
United Utilities (North-West of England including Liverpool, Manchester, Preston and covering areas from Crewe to Carlisle)
Yorkshire Water - Water company (West, South Yorkshire, East Riding of Yorkshire, part of North Lincolnshire, most of North Yorkshire and part of Derbyshire in England)
Severn Trent Water (stwater.co.uk) (from mid-Wales to Rutland, and from the Humber down to the Bristol Channel)
As with any kind of debt, if you fall behind on payments, contact your energy or water supplier as soon as possible. They’ll always be willing to help you and it will stop the debt from spiralling out of control. For free and confidential advice about debt, visit The National Debt Line or StepChange Debt Charity - Free Expert Debt Advice.