As the cost of living crisis gains further momentum, the Government has revealed a new energy bill discount scheme set to be rolled out for the winter months. This includes people in Birmingham who are finding it difficult to make ends meet, with a non-repayable sum of £400 available.
The £9.1 billion support package, administered by energy companies, will be used to support millions of UK households. Chancellor of the Exchequer, Nadhim Zahawi, said: “We know that people are struggling with rising energy prices which is why we have taken action.
“Support over the winter months should help ease the pressure on household budgets. We know that there are tough times ahead and we will continue to do everything in our power to help people.”
How does the Energy Bill 2022 discount scheme work?
Households in Birmingham will see a £66 rebate on their energy bill in October and November 2022, which will increase to £67 per month between December 2022 and 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.
How will I receive my fuel rebate?
Energy companies will directly issue the fuel rebate and the method of payment depends entirely on how households pay their energy bills.
Direct debit customers:
The Energy Bill discount will arrive 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 and payment card customers:
The Energy Bill discount will be automatically applied as a credit to standard credit customers’ accounts. This will happen 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:
The Energy Bill discount will be directly credited to the customer’s smart prepayment meters in the first week of each month of delivery.
Traditional prepayment meter customers:
These customers will be provided with redeemable EBSS Energy Bill discount vouchers or Special Action Messages (SAMs) in the first week of each month. These will be issued via SMS text, email, or post. Customers can redeem these at their usual top-up point.
Who will be eligible for the winter 2022 fuel rebate?
There are no special measures required in order to receive this help from the Government - 99% of people will be eligible to receive the £400 energy bill rebate. This includes students and other tenants renting properties with domestic electricity contracts from landlords where fixed energy costs are included in their rental charges.
Is there any other help available?
Yes, of course; after all this new £400 energy bill rebate is an additional route of support from the Government. Those most in need are also eligible for further assistance, including:
- 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.
What if I am not covered by the scheme?
Government officials have warned that one percent of households cannot be reached through the energy bill discount scheme. This includes those who do not have a domestic electricity meter or a direct account with a supplier, such as park home residencies.
Additional details about further support for these households, such as how and when these Birmingham households can access the support will be revealed in Autumn 2022.