Which? uses cookies to improve our sites and by continuing you agree to our cookies policy.

Home grants

Warm Front and Other Government Grants

Article 2 of 8

Put us to the test

Our Test Labs compare features and prices on a range of products. Try Which? to unlock our reviews. You'll instantly be able to compare our test scores, so you can make sure you don't get stuck with a Don't Buy.

Warm Front and Other Government Grants

Find out about government grants to make your home more energy efficient or help you pay your energy bill, including Winter Fuel Allowance, Cold Weather Payment and Affordable Warmth.

There are a small range of grants that can help you make your home more energy efficient. Some grants can also help pay for energy bills. Find out if you qualify.

Here, we explain the different schemes, including Affordable Warmth, Nest, the Cold Weather Payment and the Winter Fuel Payment. These replace the Warm Front Scheme, which has now ended. Plus, what you need to do if you think you qualify.

Make sure you're not paying your energy supplier more than you need to. Use our independent switching service, Which? Switch, to check that you're on the cheapest gas and electricity tariff.

Affordable Warmth and other UK grant schemes

Under the Affordable Warmth Obligation, you might be able to get financial help for energy-saving home improvements. 

It's available in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. In Wales, a scheme called Nest (managed by British Gas) provides assistance to improve the energy efficiency of your home.

Energy grants offered under Affordable Warmth and similar schemes help with a wide range of energy-efficiency measures, including loft insulation and cavity wall insulation. You could also qualify for a new boiler and heating controls, have your existing boiler repaired or even get a completely new central heating system. 

An assessor will visit your home to determine what's needed. 

To qualify, you need to receive certain benefits and must either own your property or rent it privately. If you're renting, you need the owner's permission to do the work. 

If you live in social housing and your home has an energy efficiency rating of E, F or G, you may also be able to get help with insulation of installing a heating system.

If you're not sure what efficiency rating your home has, check its energy performance certificate. Alternatively, ask your landlord or housing association.

For more information on these schemes, and full eligibility criteria, contact the scheme operator in your part of the UK:

The Affordable Warmth Obligation is part of the Energy Company Obligation.

Fuel Direct or third-party deductions

If you get Income Support, income-based Jobseeker's Allowance or Universal Credit and are struggling to keep up with fuel or water bills, you can ask your benefits office to pay the supplier directly out of your benefits. 

Fuel Direct payments pay for your current fuel use and pay an agreed amount of your unpaid bill each time your benefits are paid. This is sometimes called 'third-party deductions'.

Get in touch with your local benefit office or Jobcentre Plus to find out more.

Winter Fuel Payment

If you were born before 5 August 1953, you're likely to be able to get a Winter Fuel Payment to help you pay for gas or electric heating in winter. This annual tax-free lump sum is normally paid from November and most payments are made by Christmas. 

Households with someone over the age of 63 get £200 and over-80s get £300.

You should be paid this automatically. If you don't receive it, call the office that pays your benefits or pension. All payments should be made by 15 January 2018.

Cold Weather Payment

Cold Weather Payments are made to households that get qualifying benefits to help pay for extra heating costs during periods of very cold weather.

To get a Cold Weather Payment, the average temperature where you live must be recorded as, or forecast to be, 0°C or below for seven days in a row. If you're eligible, you will get £25 for each seven-day period between 1 November and 31 March. This should be paid into the same bank account that receives your benefits within 14 days after the cold spell.

The GOV.UK website has a tool (available from November) which enables you to find out if your area is due to receive the Cold Weather Payment. If it is, you’ll be paid it automatically.

Extra benefits

Depending on your personal and financial situation, you could be eligible for benefits to help you keep up with your bills and household expenses. Check if you qualify for financial help through the benefits system using the GOV.UK website.

Warm Home Discount

The Warm Home Discount is a £140 annual credit that suppliers place on your energy account if you're eligible. Find out whether you qualify in our guide to the Warm Home Discount.  

Energy Company Obligation

Subsidised energy-efficient home improvements are available through the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) if you qualify. These can include insulation or replacement boilers. Find out more in our ECO guide.

Boiler Scrappage Scheme

The Boiler Scrappage Scheme in England, Wales, and Scotland has closed. It offered money-off vouchers to households who wanted to upgrade their old G-rated boiler to a new A-rated boiler.

Some companies still use boiler scrappage to offer a discount if you get a new boiler from them. This is not the government scheme, and we recommend you get more than one quote because sometimes, even with the discount, these boilers might not be the cheapest.

If you're considering a new boiler, make sure you check if you can get a free boiler first.

Whether you're eligible or not for any of these schemes, you can still save money on energy by switching supplier. Use our independent switching website, Which? Switch, to find the cheapest gas and electricity deal.

SHARE THIS PAGE