Keeping warm

What help is available?

As part of the national and local drive to tackle climate change, there is a wide range of help and advice available both locally and nationally. We work closely with the Energy Saving Trust (link opens in new window), who provide free and independent advice on what type of measures would be beneficial for your type of home.

The Energy Saving Trust can be contacted for free on 0800 444 202.

Are there any council funded grants or loans?

We do offers grants and loan assistance for a number of housing-related works.

These include:

  • safety
  • security
  • and Emergency Repair Grants to help with urgent low cost (up to £500) repairs such as repairing a faulty component of a heating system

For more expensive works such as:

  • the installation/replacement of a boiler or heating system
  • damp-proofing
  • or remedying dangerous wiring

a means-tested Home Improvement Loan Assistance (up to £15,000) may be available.

What is Affordable Warmth Assistance?

This is a loan of up to £5,000 that is intended to remedy fuel poverty, i.e. where a household is paying a high proportion of income on their fuel bills and/or to remedy energy inefficiency in the home. This loan is repayable in full if the property is sold or transferred within 10 years. This loan

Who is eligible for Affordable Warmth Assistance?

Any home owner requiring energy efficiency/fuel poverty remediation works, and who cannot obtain such assistance in part or total from other sources, although the loan can be used in addition to external funding where that funding does not meet total costs. Eligibility will not be constrained to those in receipt of means tested benefits but will include those where fuel poverty can be assessed as likely or a risk (through determination of fuel costs, thermal efficiency and income).

There are two ways in which homeowners could be eligible for this assistance, although in all cases applicants must investigate assistance from their energy supplier.

  1. Vulnerable household - in receipt of certain benefits in an energy inefficient house. Under this criterion, the energy rating of the dwelling occupied by a vulnerable household in receipt of benefits must be determined. A dwelling with very poor insulation and an inefficient/no heating system is likely to have a low energy rating. In some cases people under this criterion are eligible for assistance via their energy supplier, the affordable warmth obligation) but may need to provide some funding themselves. In these cases, Affordable Warmth Assistance can 'top up' the energy supplier’s grant

  2. The household - To assess this we will need to undertake an assessment of income and fuel costs over a 12-month period. Applicants do not need to be in receipt of benefits. In cases where households purposely keep fuel bills low, an energy rating can indicate the true cost of heating to keep warm and healthy

How to apply for Affordable Warmth Assistance?

If you feel that your home is cold and too costly to keep warm you should initially contact the Energy Saving Trust on 0800 444 202.

If the Energy Saving Trust cannot help you, you should contact the Housing Solutions Team on 0300 300 8767. An advisor will ask you about your particular circumstances and should be able to advise on whether you are likely to be eligible based on the information that you have provided.