The Warm Home Discount (WHD) is a government scheme aimed at helping energy customers affected by fuel poverty in Great Britain, by providing £150 credit to their electricity account.
Our supply partner Octopus Energy provides Warm Homes discount to both Core and Broader Group of customers.
Below is information about both Core and Broader Group WHD criteria and how to claim the Warm Home Discount from us. There are now two Warm Home Discount Schemes: one for England and Wales, and one for Scotland.
England and Wales
here are two core groups for this scheme: Core Group 1 (in receipt of the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit), and Core Group 2 (customers who meet Low Income Criteria and High Energy Costs Criteria).
If you are in either group, you will receive a £150 credit into your energy account.
Core Group 1: £150 for eligible pensioners
To receive the WHD in this group you (or your partner’s) name must be on your energy account, and you (or your partner) need to:
- receive the ‘Guarantee Credit’ element of Pension Credit.
- be with an energy supplier who participates in the WHD scheme on 13 August 2023
If you are in this group you do not need to do anything.
Customers will be contacted in writing between October 2023 and December 2023 to be advised of their eligibility for the scheme.
Core Group 2: £150 for eligible households (Low income/high energy costs)
You no longer need to complete an application form from your energy supplier.
Eligible customers will be identified based on Low Income Criteria and High Energy Costs Criteria.
The qualifying date for meeting these criteria is 13 August 2023.
The criteria to qualify for this scheme are:
- Be with an energy supplier that is part of the WHD scheme
- Have your name on a bill or account with that supplier
- You (or your partner) were in receipt of a qualifying means-tested benefit, or tax credit, as listed in the Low Income Criteria section below, on the qualifying date of 13 August 2023.
- Live in a property identified as having high energy costs, which is explained in more detail in the High Energy Costs Criteria section below.
Low Income Criteria
Is based on being in receipt of means-tested benefits or tax credits, which includes:
- Universal Credit
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Income-based Jobseekers Allowance
- Income Support
- Housing Benefit
- Pension Credits Savings Credit
- Child Tax Credits *
- Working Tax Credits *
* Households in receipt of Tax Credits must be below a household income threshold, adjusted according to household composition. More information can be found here.
If you meet the low income criteria, you also need to meet the new High Energy Costs Criteria.
High Energy Costs Criteria
This criteria is set by the Government department of Department for Energy Security & Net Zero (DESNZ). They will use data from the Valuations Office Agency (VOA) – another Government department – to identify households which are likely to have high energy costs.
The VOA will use the following benchmarks for this:
- Floor area: the larger a property, the more likely it is to have higher energy costs
- Property age: older properties are likely to have below average energy efficiency and above average floor areas.
- Property type: properties with more external walls – like detached houses – generally have lower energy efficiency, and higher energy costs.
DESNZ will match property data from the VOA with means-tested benefits and Tax credit data held by DWP and HMRC. This will help them identify those who are on low incomes, and likely to live in a property that’s more expensive to heat.
Where data on a property is missing, DESNZ will consider these additional criteria:
- Information on other properties nearby
- The Energy Performance Rating (EPC) of a property
- Other information available in the Land Registry
Unlike the Core Group 2 scheme in England and Wales, customers who are on low income and on certain benefits need to apply for the Broader Group.
This is because Scotland has no equivalent of the Valuations Office Agency (VOA), as referenced in the Core Group 2 criteria for England and Wales.
This means there is no way to identify customers who may fall into the high energy costs criteria, so you will need to provide information as with previous years WHD schemes.
There are two groups for this scheme: Core Group 1 (in receipt of the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit), and Broader Group (customers who meet low income and vulnerability criteria).
If you are in either group, you will receive a £150 credit into your energy account
Core Group: £150 for eligible pensioners
To receive the WHD in this group you (or your partner’s) name must be on your energy account, and you (or your partner) need to meet these criteria:
- Receive the ‘Guarantee Credit’ element of Pension Credit.
- Be with an energy supplier who participates in the WHD scheme as of the 13 August 2023.
If you are in this group you do not need to do anything.
Customers will be contacted in writing by mid-December to be advised of their eligibility for the scheme. They’ll send you a letter letting you know whether:
- You’re getting the discount automatically and you’ll receive £150 credit into your energy account before the 31st March 2024, or
- You need to contact the WHD Helpline.
Broader Group: application scheme £150
Customers in Scotland who fall under the Broader Group will need to submit an application to receive the Warm Home Discount. You can read more about this on the gov.uk site.
If you are NOT in receipt of the Guaranteed Element of Pension Credit, but receiving means tested benefits and/or on low income, you may be eligible for the Broader Group Scheme.
You can review the application form in your Octopus account and if you meet the eligibility criteria please submit your applications as soon as possible.