More than 3,500 people have called the Home Heat Helpline in the last week, and customers are being urged to prepare for the cold weather that’s forecast by checking they are claiming help with their energy bills.
The service, which is designed to help energy customers find out if they are entitled to help with their energy costs, also saw 17,400 visitors to its website in launch week.
The Helpline’s trained advisers have been giving out information on eligibility criteria for energy rebates, boiler grants and help with insulation. The most popular page on the Home Heat Helpline’s website (www.homeheathelpline.org.uk) has been the new Energy Checker – a free, simple online tool to help customers find out if they may be entitled to help.
The Helpline team expects the number of people calling the Helpline to stay high as the weather gets colder in the run up to Christmas. They are urging people to call to check that they are not missing out on any help with their bills.
3.4 million households in the UK could benefit but many people don’t realise what support is available. The Home Heat Helpline (0800 33 66 99) is a free, impartial and confidential service that connects people on low incomes with support which is worth an average of £160. In some regions eligibility is even higher, for example in certain parts of Wales and the North West of England over a fifth of households are eligible for help, giving even more reason to pick up the phone. The help available includes grants for insulation, new boilers, discount and rebate schemes.
People can call the Home Heat Helpline and speak to one of the friendly advisers who will provide advice on reducing energy bills.
Christine McGourty from the Home Heat Helpline added:
“We’re very pleased that so many people are getting in touch with the Helpline this year. Getting the phone number onto BBC Breakfast, Sky News, BBC One and on various websites has really encouraged people to call and the advisers have been giving out lots of good information.
“We’re urging people to call the Helpline to find out what help they may be entitled to. Anyone who is worried about paying energy bills this winter should call.”
There are also some other simple steps people can take in reducing their energy. For example:
- Turning your thermostat down by 1 degrees centigrade could cut your heating bills by up to 10 per cent and save you around £100 a year.
- turn radiators down in rooms which you only use occasionally
- switch your lights off when you’re not using them
- turn appliances like TVs and phone chargers off at the wall rather than leaving them on standby when they’re not being used
- replace normal light bulbs with energy efficient ones
- regularly defrost your freezer to make sure it’s operating at full efficiency
- draw curtains over windows at night to provide insulation for the room
- move furniture away from radiators and heaters to allow heat to circulate around the room
Home Heat Helpline: 0800 33 66 99 or www.homeheathelpline.org.uk
Follow the Home Heat Helpline on Twitter for added advice and updates @HHHelpline