What if we told you we’ve done all the digging around for the latest support available right now to help with the cost of living, and put it in to one place for you to browse? Phew, well we have!
As the Government is now releasing its next cost of living payment to those who qualify, we wanted to see what other help is out there for our customers - especially now we’ve entered the times of questioning whether to put the heating on! We've found out how you may be able to get cheaper broadband, where kids can eat for free and how to find a local warm space over the winter months.
The second cost of living payment this year will be paid between 31 October and 19 November, with a third payment expected in Spring 2024. The eligibility criteria are the same as the previous payments, click here for more guidance.
There are cheaper social tariffs available for people claiming Universal Credit, Pension Credit and other benefits, with some providers offering broadband deals from as low as £10 a month.
The tariffs usually range from £10 to £20 a month, and it may even be that the provider you're already with has a social tariff you can simply switch on to.
There should be no set-up fee, or if there is then this should be small and you'll be made aware before you sign up. There's also no charge to leave a social tariff before the end of your contract.
Warm home discount scheme
You could get £150 off your electricity bill for winter 2023-24 under this scheme. It's a one-off payment to make things a little easier for those who don't live in an energy efficient home and are on a low income or pension.
The payment is automatically applied to your electricity account, so if you're eligible you'll receive a letter between October and early January 2024 confirming this.
If you don't get a letter and think you're eligible, call the Warm Home Discount Scheme helpline on 0800 030 9322. They're open Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm.
This payment is different to the Cold Weather Payment and Winter Fuel Payment, which are two further schemes.
Futures' energy advice guides
We know that putting the heating on can be worry. How much will it cost? Have I got enough money left to top it up again? What about my food shopping? They’re all natural worries, but it’s important to feel comfortable, affordably in your home.
We published six mini guides with money and energy saving advice earlier this year, which are all of course still relevant. Each one focuses on a different topic, but two of them cover managing your energy costs and how to save energy at home. They're all written with an emphasis on things you can simply do at home, so you can learn greener, cleaner and cheaper habits.