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Fuel poverty and energy saving

Where can I get help with my energy bills?

If you're struggling to pay your energy bills or you're in debt with your energy supplier, there are lots of places you can get help.

Middlesbrough Environment City


The Affordable Warmth Team offers free support including:

  • one-to-one energy advice
  • advice on repaying fuel debt
  • damp and condensation advice
  • help to understand your energy bills
  • identifying other energy efficiency help you may be entitled to

Get help from the Affordable Warmth Team.

Cleveland Fire Brigade


The Stay Safe and Warm scheme is free and open to anyone living in Cleveland. There are no age restrictions. The scheme offers access to heaters and other equipment to help you stay warm. You'll need a free home assessment first. Whether it's a short-term issue like a boiler breakdown or an ongoing heating issue, Cleveland Fire Brigade can help. Find out more about Stay Safe and Warm.

Citizens Advice


Citizens Advice offers free, confidential, and unbiased advice, tailored to your situation and needs. Get help from Citizens Advice.

Your energy supplier


It's worth contacting energy supplier directly if you're struggling with paying your bill. They may be able to offer you a payment plan, or tell you about schemes and grants to help with your heating and energy costs.



Ofgem's website has lots of helpful information about how to reduce your energy usage and bills. It also explains where to go for help if you're struggling to pay your energy bills. Get energy saving advice from Ofgem.

Green Doctors


The Green Doctors offer free energy advice and services, including:

  • fixing the causes of heat loss in homes
  • tackling problems with mould and damp
  • installing small energy-saving measures, like draught excluders

They can also help you get support like emergency heating, and applying for government grants. Get help from the Green Doctors.

Priority Services Register


The Priority Services Register is a free service which makes sure extra help is available to people in vulnerable situations. This includes things like:

  • advanced notice of scheduled power cuts (for example, if you need an energy supply for medical equipment)
  • priority support in an emergency
  • regular meter reading services

Find out more about the Priority Services Register.

Warm Home Discount Scheme (WHD)


If you're on a low income, you might be able to get money off your electricity bill for winter through the Warm Home Discount Scheme (WHD). Find out more about the Warm Home Discount Scheme.

Energy saving schemes

You may be eligible to get help from an energy saving scheme, for example with installing insulation or a new boiler.

Energy Company Obligation (ECO)


You might be able to get help for energy-saving improvements to your home if you either:

  • claim certain benefits and live in private housing (for example you own your home or rent from a private landlord)
  • live in social housing

You may get help with the cost of:

  • insulation work, for example to your loft or cavity walls
  • replacing or repairing your boiler - or other upgrades to your heating

If you claim benefits and live in private housing

You might be eligible for help if you live in private housing and get one of the following benefits:

  • Child Tax Credit
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Universal Credit
  • Pension Guarantee Credit
  • Pension Savings Credit
  • Income Support
  • income-based Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA)
  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Child Benefit
  • Housing Benefit

If you own your house, it must have an energy efficiency rating of D, E, F or G to be eligible.

If you rent from a private landlord, the house must have an energy efficiency rating of E, F or G to be eligible. You must have the owner's permission to do the work.

Use the energy performance certificate register to find your property's energy efficiency rating, or ask your landlord.

If you're a social housing tenant

If you live in social housing that has an energy efficiency rating of E, F or G you might be eligible for help with insulation or installing a heating system for the first time.

Use the energy performance certificate register to find your property's energy efficiency rating, or ask your landlord or housing association.

How to apply

Visit the Ofgem website to find an energy supplier taking part in ECO.

You can find out more about ECO on the Ofgem website.

The Great British Insulation Scheme


You may be able to get free or cheaper insulation to reduce your home’s energy bills.

You might get support if your home:

You can be a homeowner, landlord or tenant (either renting privately or from a housing association). If you’re a tenant, speak to your landlord before you apply. You’ll need their permission before any insulation can be installed.

Home insulation you can get

You may be able to get support to install:

  • cavity wall insulation
  • solid wall insulation (internal or external)
  • loft insulation
  • flat or pitched roof insulation
  • underfloor insulation
  • solid floor insulation
  • park home insulation
  • room-in-roof insulation

Who is eligible for the Great British Insulation Scheme?

Your property must need energy-efficiency upgrades like cavity wall insulation.

Your energy supplier will match you with an assessor who will visit your home and decide what is needed.

You must either own your own home or have permission from your landlord. This includes if the property is owned by a social housing provider or management company.

You can check if you're eligible for the Great British Insulation Scheme on the government website.

If you're eligible for support, your energy supplier will contact you and arrange an assessment of the property.

You can find out more about the Great British Insulation Scheme on the Ofgem website.

The Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS)


Through the Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS), you could get a grant to cover part of the cost of replacing fossil fuel heating systems with a heat pump or biomass boiler.

Fossil fuel heating systems include oil, gas, or electric.

What you can get

You can get one grant per property. Current grants are available for:

  • £7,500 towards an air source heat pump
  • £7,500 towards a ground source heat pump (including water source heat pumps and those on shared ground loops)
  • £5,000 towards a biomass boiler

The scheme is designed to minimise the amount of work the property owner needs to do. Your chosen installer will make a BUS application on your behalf, and keep Ofgem up to date with how the project is going.

How to apply

Contact suitable MCS certified installers to get quotes for the work.

Confirm you're eligible (your installer will tell you).

Agree a quote with your chosen installer.

The installer will apply on your behalf on the Ofgem website.

The value of the grant will be taken off the amount you pay for installation.

Ofgem will contact you to confirm that the installer is acting on your behalf. They might also contact you by phone or visit your property in order to check the installation.

You can find out more about the BUS on the Ofgem website.