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Sarah Rice

Sarah is our insurance specialist, reporting the latest important developments in the industry.

Poorer Households Could Miss Out on Energy Discounts

Many may miss out on the governments Warm Home Discount Scheme due to it only being offered to a 'super priority group', ensure you're on the best tariff today.

Fuel poor households and low income households are at risk of losing out on the Government's Warm Home Discount scheme, a leading consumer watchdog has revealed.

The Consumer Focus group is calling for the Government to revise the energy bill discount scheme as hundreds and thousands of the poorest families and disabled people could miss out. Many households are struggling to afford to heat their homes, in some cases, putting health at a serious risk.

The Warm Home Discount Scheme will offer energy bill discounts of £130 to low incomes customers and fuel poor households when it comes into effect in April.

However, energy suppliers will only be required to offer the discount to low income pensioners. It is then up to the discretion of the energy company to decide which other vulnerable customers will receive the discount.

"Leaving it to energy companies to decide who gets this help is not the way to develop a consistent and strategic approach to helping those in fuel poverty,” said Jonathan Stearn, energy expert for Consumer Focus.

Watchdog believe that 1.5 million people who are at serious risk of living in cold conditions and are already on the ‘ super priority group' will miss out.

Children, the elderly and the disabled are most vulnerable to health risks when living in a cold or damp environment. In response to this the Government have created a ‘super priority group'. This includes those eligible to Cold Weather Payments and low income families with school age children.

The Consumer Focus pushing for widespread consistency in the Governments handling of fuel poverty by extending the Warm Homes Discount to the super priority group

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