Energy rates are just going up and up over the past few years, and since 2020, they’ve increased at an even faster rate. This can be worrying for many of us, none more so than pensioners who may already have a strict budget in place – knowing you have to pay 50 or even 100% more than you did just a few years ago can be pretty worrying.
And the truth is, it doesn’t look like this will be a temporary increase. So, what are the cheapest energy deals out there specifically made for pensioners, and are some firms better than the rest? We’re going to be taking a quick look at some of the different options.
What are the best energy deals for pensioners?
There are a few grants like the Winter Fuel payment that can help you pay your energy bills each year. Making sure that you’re on the lowest tariff possible, which is typically a fixed tariff, is the first thing that you’ll want to do if you’re trying to save some cash. You can do this by getting in touch with your energy supplier.
The bad news is that there’s currently no special deals out there for pensioners specifically. That means that for the most part, they’re going to be in the same position as the rest of us when looking for a new energy deal. The good news is that there are still some low priced energy tariffs out there that you can switch to.
So, out of the current suppliers on the market, usually we recommend our readers to check out Bulb first, who are the biggest energy outside of the big six in the UK. They usually offer one of the cheapest deals you can find on the market, along with electricity that’s 100% renewable, which is a good combination between price and environmentally friendly.
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If you want to use an energy switching service at no cost to yourself, then you’re going to want to check out something like Switchd. They’ll look through all of the cheapest possible deals in your area to try and find you the one best for your needs, without you having to lift a finger. They’ll switch you over within a few weeks, and if you stay signed up with them, they’ll look for the cheapest deal for you each year.
As I mentioned, there aren’t any special deals for pensioners unfortunately. However, there are a few different government schemes that you may want to take a look at if you need a little help getting your energy bills paid.
Warm Home Discount
The Warm Home Discount has been designed specifically to help people who are going to struggle with the annual increase in price of bills through the Winter time. That means that people can apply for a £140 discount off of your electricity bill, which for many homes will clear at least a month’s worth of energy off your plate.
To qualify for the Warm Home discount scheme, you need to be part of the “Core Group”, which are people who get the Guarantee Credit part of Pension Credit. The only other people who can qualify for this discount are those on low incomes. Elderly customers and senior citizens should qualify for this scheme, and it can definitely help you lower your energy costs.
You should automatically get a letter through the post telling you if you do or don’t qualify for the Warm Home discount – this should be some time between October and December. If you don’t, you’ll want to give the helpline a call at 0800 731 0214, and they can help you out. The credit should be applied by Feb-March of next year by the latest.
Cold Weather Payments/Winter Fuel Payment
Another way that you can potentially save money on your energy bills is by trying to apply for Cold Weather Payments. If you’re already getting benefits or support from the government, then there’s a good chance you’ll be able to apply for this.
If the weather dips below zero degrees for 7 days consecutively then you’re able to apply for this credit of £25. You can do this at any time between November and March, and it’s based on the actual weather or at least the potential forecast.
If you’re over the age of 67, then you may also be able to apply for the Winter Fuel payment. This will give you between £100 and £300 to pay your heating bills, and you automatically quality this if you receive a state pension. Again, you should receive your money by March at the latest.
In conclusion, although there are no special deals with specific companies for pensioners, there are a couple of things that you can do to shave down your payments if you need assistance. With energy prices hitting the roof, many people across the UK could do with a little help paying their bills, and there are a few government plans that may be able to help you out.
It may be a surprise that there are no special energy tariffs for pensioners; with many elderly customers looking to get some help, it’s possible that this may be introduced later down the road.