Payments, grants and schemes to help with energy and housing costs
While undergoing or recovering from treatment, many people with cancer find they feel the cold more, are at home for longer periods of time and so use more energy for heating the home.
Grants are available to help you improve the heating systems and insulation in your home.
Payments, grants and schemes
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The schemes listed below are designed to either help you pay your fuel bills or help you make your home more energy efficient, which can save you money.
Cold Weather Payment
When a winter has been particularly cold (with temperatures of 0°C or lower for seven consecutive days), the government makes a weekly payment of £25 to people who receive certain benefits. Cold Weather Payments will automatically be made on top of your usual benefits.
Winter Fuel Payment
Winter Fuel Payment is a government scheme to help older people keep warm during winter. A yearly payment is made to both men and women who have reached the State Pension age for women. The amount you receive depends on your individual circumstances, such as whether you live with another qualifying person and how old they are.
Visit the Direct Gov website
or NI Direct
in Northern Ireland to find out more about these payments.
These national schemes can help you make energy-saving changes to your home.
Warm Front (England)
In England, the Warm Front scheme provides heating and insulation improvements to make homes more energy efficient. Certain criteria apply – recipients must receive particular income-related benefits and live in properties that are poorly insulated or do not have an effective heating system. Visit the Warm Front website
or call 0800 316 2805
to find out more.
Warm Homes (Northern Ireland)
The Warm Homes Scheme provides grants to people who are receiving certain benefits to make energy-saving changes, such as putting in loft insulation, to their homes. Visit the Warm Homes website or call 0800 988 0559 for more information.
The Energy Assistance Package (Scotland)
The Energy Assistance Package is open to all people in Scotland. Depending on your circumstances, it offers a free home energy check; a benefit, tax credit and tariff eligibility check; free or subsidised insulation; and insulation and heating system improvements to your home. Visit the Energy Assistance Package website
or call the Home Energy Scotland Hotline on 0800 512 012
Nest is the Welsh Assembly government’s scheme to make homes warmer and more fuel efficient. Nest provides advice about saving energy, managing money, whether you’re on the most appropriate tariff and whether any benefits are available to you. You may also be eligible to receive energysaving home improvements, such as central heating and loft insulation, at no cost to you. You can call Nest free from a landline on 0800 512 012, call 0300 456 2655 from a mobile or visit the Nest website.
Our section on home adaptations and things you can do
has more ways you can save energy around the home. For more information about managing your energy costs when you are affected by cancer, see our information onways to keep warm without the worry
A number of charities, including Macmillan, provide grants for people who are having difficulty paying their fuel costs or meeting other expenses.
Find out more about Macmillan Grants or call our cancer support specialists on 0808 808 00 00.
In extreme cases, if you don’t have enough money to meet your (or your family’s) immediate short-term needs, you can apply for a crisis loan from the government. You will need to pay this back, but you won’t be charged any interest. To apply, call Jobcentre Plus on 0800 032 7952
. In Northern Ireland, call the crisis loan claim line on 0800 028 8822
Keeping warm with npower
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Through our partnership with npower we have developed a Fuel Management Programme (FMP). The programme aims to help people affected by cancer who are either experiencing high fuel bills or struggling with the adverse affects from the cold and damp in their homes.
If you are an npower customer and are spending more than 10% of your income on fuel (and have limited savings) then call Macmillan on 0808 808 00 00 (Monday to Friday, 9am-8pm) to find out if you are eligible for the FMP.
If you are accepted on to the programme you could save money on your bills, receive assistance with arrears and energy efficiency advice, and have a full benefits check.
Call our cancer support specialists free on 0808 808 00 00 for more information.
Helping people in cold, damp homes
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Health Through Warmth (HTW) was set up by npower in partnership with National Energy Action (NEA) and the NHS in 2000, the scheme operates in 15 areas of England and Wales.
HTW accesses grants if you are eligible and, depending on your circumstances, can also seek assistance from charitable organisations and the unique npower Health Through Warmth Crisis Fund to help pay for the heating or insulation measures required to improve the levels of warmth, comfort and quality of life for vulnerable people with cold and damp related illnesses. You do not need to be an npower customer to be referred to the scheme, but you will need to be referred by a health worker who has attended HTW awareness sessions.
Call the Health through Warmth main office on 0845 070 2809 for more information.
There are heating grants available mainly for people who are disabled, on a low income or over 60. For more information contact the EAGA partnership:
Freephone 0800 316 2808
Freephone 0800 316 2815
Contact Scottish Gas who now run the central heating and warm deal programmes, freephone 0800 316 1653
In Northern Ireland
Freephone 0800 181 66.