Warm Home Discount Scheme – how to get £140 off your energy bill

3 min Read Published: 01 Oct 2021

Warm Home Discount Scheme What is the Warm Home Discount Scheme - and is my supplier offering it?

The Warm Home Discount Scheme is a government initiative that offers households on a low income, or those that receive certain benefits, a one-off £140 discount on their electricity bill between October and March. The scheme is being operated through electricity suppliers, with the discount taken off bills rather than being paid directly to the customer.

All electricity suppliers with more than 150,000 customers are required to be part of the scheme, which aims to help the most vulnerable over the winter months.

For those on a pre-paid meter, the supplier will generally issue a voucher. If you have the same supplier for both electricity and gas, you may be able to get the discount from your gas bill instead, although you have to check with the supplier.

What suppliers are part of the Warm Home Discount Scheme

The suppliers participating in the 2021/22 Warm Home Discount Scheme include:

  • Boost
  • Bristol Energy ("core" category only)
  • British Gas
  • Bulb
  • E (start date to be confirmed)
  • Ecotricity ("core" category only)
  • E.on
  • E.on Next (start date to be confirmed)
  • EDF
  • Green Energy ("core" category only)
  • Ovo Energy
  • Pure Planet
  • Scottish Power
  • Shell Energy
  • So Energy
  • SSE
  • Utilita (closed for new applicants)
  • Utility Warehouse

The Warm Home Discount Scheme does not affect the Cold Weather Payment or Winter Fuel Payment. 

Who is eligible for the Warm Home Discount Scheme?

There are two levels of eligibility for the Warm Home Discount Scheme: if you receive the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit (core group) or if you are on a low income and satisfy the individual supplier's criteria (broader group).

How to apply if you are in the core group

You should be eligible for the discount if you get the Guarantee Credit part of Pension Credit, but you also need to fulfil the following criteria:

  • the energy supplier you were with on 4th of July 2021 is part of the scheme
  • your name (or your partner's name) is on the electricity bill

If you qualify for the scheme, you will receive a letter between October and December 2021 with guidance on how to access the discount. You may be asked to call a dedicated helpline before the 28th of February 2022 to confirm your details, although you will be advised if that is the case.

The discount will be applied to your bill by 31st of March 2022. If you believe you qualify, but don't receive a letter, or if you apply but don't get the discount before the end of March, you can call the helpline on 0800 731 0214.

If you have switched supplier since the 4th of July 2021, you will still be part of the scheme through your original supplier.

How to apply if you are in the broader group

You may be able to access the discount if you are in the broader group, although the supplier will decide who can participate in the scheme and many operate on a first-come, first-served basis, so it pays to apply as soon as possible.

You will need to meet the following criteria:

  • your energy supplier is part of the scheme
  • you're on a low income
  • you receive certain means-tested benefits

"Low income" is defined as a household income of £16,190 per year or less. If you fall into this category and receive income support, income-based jobseeker's allowance or income-related employment and support allowance, you may qualify if you also:

  • get a disability or disabled-child premium, or child tax credit that includes a "disability" or "severe disability" element
  • get a pensioner premium
  • have parental responsibility for a child aged 5 or under, who lives with you

Alternatively, if you get universal credit and have earned £1,349 or less in one month or more since October 2020 and also:

  • have the "limited capability for work" or "disabled child" element
  • have parental responsibility for a child aged 5 or under, who lives with you

If you believe you qualify, apply for the discount directly through your supplier. If you're successful, the discount will be applied by the 31st of March 2022.

What happens if my energy company went bust?

If your energy supplier has fallen victim to the energy crisis and is no longer operating, you will need to apply for the Warm Home Discount Scheme through your new energy supplier, when you are assigned one. If you are part of the core group, the new supplier will automatically take over the payment and so you simply need to wait for them to contact you with details of how and when the discount will be applied.

Meanwhile, if you are in the broader group, you will need to apply through your new supplier, even if you have already made an application with your old supplier. Again, there are no guarantees you will be given the discount as each supplier has a limited amount of money set aside for the scheme and chooses who it gives it to.