Households will start receiving £400 off their energy bills from October, with the discount made in 6 instalments to help families throughout the winter period
Millions of households across Great Britain will receive non-repayable discounts on their energy bills this winter as further details of the Energy Bills Support Scheme are set out.
The £400 discount, administered by energy suppliers, will be paid to consumers over 6 months with payments starting from October 2022.
Those with a domestic electricity meter point paying for their energy via standard credit, payment card and direct debit will receive an automatic deduction to their bills over the 6 month period – totalling £400.
Traditional prepayment meter customers will be provided with Energy Bill discount vouchers from the first week of each month, issued via SMS text, email or post, using the customer’s registered contact details. These customers will need to take action to redeem these at their usual top-up point, such as their nearest local PayPoint or Post Office branch.
In all cases, no household should be asked for bank details at any point. Ministers are urging consumers to stay alert of potential scams and report these to the relevant authorities where they are suspected.
Households will see a discount of £66 applied to their energy bills in October and November, rising to £67 each month from December through to March 2023. The non-repayable discount will be provided on a monthly basis regardless of whether consumers pay monthly, quarterly or have an associated payment card.
This means that where a person’s housing circumstances change during the 6-month period, such as those leaving or moving home, they will still benefit from the relevant portion of the total £400.
This also applies to students and other tenants renting properties with domestic electricity contracts from landlords where fixed energy costs are included in their rental charges. In these circumstances, landlords who resell energy to their tenants should pass the discounted payments on appropriately, in line with Ofgem rules to protect tenants.
As part of this package, we are confirming today that further funding will be available to provide equivalent support of £400 for energy bills for the 1% of households who will not be reached through the EBSS. This includes those who do not have a domestic electricity meter or a direct relationship with an energy supplier, such as park home residents which James has raised with ministers on behalf of constituents. An announcement with details on how and when these households across Great Britain can access this support will be made this Autumn.
Details set out today will ensure the scheme is delivered to as many domestic electricity customers as possible over the winter, regardless of which supplier they use or their choice of payment method.
- Direct Debit customers will receive the Energy Bill discount automatically as a deduction to the monthly Direct Debit amount collected, or as a refund to the customer’s bank account following Direct Debit collection during each month of delivery
- standard credit customers and payment card customers will see the Energy Bill discount automatically applied as a credit to standard credit customers’ accounts in the first week of each month of EBSS delivery, with the credit appearing as it would if the customer had made a payment
- smart prepayment meter customers will see the Energy Bill discount credited directly to their smart prepayment meters in the first week of each month of delivery
- traditional prepayment meter customers will be provided with redeemable EBSS Energy Bill discount vouchers or Special Action Messages (SAMs) from the first week of each month, issued via SMS text, email or post. Customers will need to redeem these at their usual top-up point
The Energy Bills Support Scheme forms part of the government’s £37 million Cost of Living Support package, providing Help for Households with rising prices, targeted at those most in need.
Households most in need will be eligible for further support in addition to the Energy Bill discount. This includes:
- a £650 one-off Cost of Living Payment for around 8 million households on means tested benefits
- a £300 one-off Pensioner Cost of Living Payment for over 8 million pensioner households to be paid alongside the Winter Fuel Payment
- a £150 one-off Disability Cost of Living Payment for around six million people across the UK who receive certain disability benefits
- a £500 million increase and extension of the Household Support Fund available to councils to support vulnerable households with the cost of essentials such as food, utilities and clothing
Today’s announcement comes as the government launches an online service to help homeowners make informed choices on the energy efficiency of their homes, which will thereby help reduce consumers’ energy consumption and energy costs.
This is part of the government’s ‘Help to Heat’ support, investing £12 billion to make homes, particularly for low-income households, warmer and cheaper to heat, already delivering average energy bill savings of around £300 a year.