In a recent announcement by the government, there is a promise of help with rising energy bills. This includes:
- A £200 discount on energy bill this Autumn for domestic electricity customers. (This will be paid back automatically over the next five years).
- A £150 non-repayable rebate in Council Tax bills for all households in Bands A-D.
- £144 million of funding for local councils to help households who need support but do not qualify for the Council Tax rebate.
Why is the government providing support?
The government recognises many households will need help to deal with rising energy costs. From 1 April, the energy price cap will rise from £1,277 to £1,971. This means energy bills will rise by almost £700 for the average household. Because gas is used to generate electricity this pushes up electricity bills as well as gas bills.
How will the Energy Bill Discount Scheme work?
Domestic energy customers will receive a £200 cash discount on their bills this autumn. The government will provide funding to all energy suppliers for them to pass on to their domestic energy customers from October. The discount is paid automatically in equal instalments over five years, starting from the financial year 2023-24, when wholesale gas prices are expected to come down.
This approach will help to spread the higher costs over time in a way that is more manageable for households.
How will the Council Tax rebate work?
Households in England in Council Tax Bands A-D may qualify for a £150 rebate in their council tax bill in April this year. The rebate to bills will be made directly by local councils. This won’t have to be repaid.
80% of households in England are in Council Tax Bands A-D, so they will benefit from this rebate. The rebate will not be paid for second homes or empty properties.
It is expected that most people who pay their Council Tax by Direct Debit will receive the rebate in April. For households in Bands A-D who do not pay by Direct Debit, their councils will be ready to process their claims in April. For those with council tax bills lower than £150 that month, it will take a bit longer to receive the benefit in full. Almost all households should see the full benefit by May.
The £150 Council Tax Energy Rebate applies in England only, as Council Tax policy is different in other parts of the country.
What other help is available for people struggling with the cost of living?
These new measures are on top of the existing £12 billion support the government is providing for the cost of living this financial year and next. This includes reducing the Universal Credit taper rate, raising the National Living Wage, freezing alcohol and fuel duties and providing targeted help with energy bills.
The information below shows the total available funding per household to help with energy bills, depending on whether the household qualifies. The government is continuing with plans to expand the Warm Home Discount and increase the rebate value to £150 each year.
- Universal Rebate: All households - £200
- Council Tax Rebate: Households in Council Tax bands A-D - £150.
- Warm Home Discount: Households receiving Pension Credit, Guarantee Credit and some working age benefits - £150.
- Winter Fuel Payment: All households with at least one member above state pension age. £200 per household to those under 80, £300 to those over 80.
If you are worried about paying your rent or service charges, or any other bills, please contact us. We can help.