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Legal & money

Energy prices and fuel poverty

(9 Posts)
Liz08 Mon 18-Jul-11 09:51:15

Energy prices - we switched my father's provider to EDF last year and he now pays almost half of what NPower were charging!
The reason seems to be the two tier charges used by NPower, ie the first step (can't remember exactly how many units, sorry) were charged at a higher rate and the second step at a lower rate.
He lives alone and never actually reached that second step so always paid the high rate. EDF have the same rate for all their units so this is much better for him.
He doesn't have a computer so he used a comparison phone line that he found in the "Yours" magazine to discover this and (even though he doesn't like change) is very pleased he did it.

harrigran Thu 14-Jul-11 22:26:39

I agree jangly, take the money and redistribute it. I would hate for the people that really need it to miss out.

susiecb Thu 14-Jul-11 15:36:26

Its one payment per household so if you have a partner who already gets it you dont get two lots.

My husband wrote to William Hague at the time of the last election (he was our MP then) about his mother who lives in sheltered accomodation and her fuel costs are all included in the rent and service charge paid from a combination of state pension and supporting people allowance. She gets the maximum £400 as she is 97 and doesnt need it for fuel. The complex she lives in is so hot all the residents go about in summer clothes all winter and the windows are thrown wide open. My father lived in a similar situation until he dieD. My husband suggested to W Hague that such accomodation could be reviewed as clearly the heating allowance was needed for people not in such housing who needed more money to keep warm. A short letter was returned saying it was too costly to even look at the situation!
PS MIL is a high Tory and wouldnt dream of giving up her allowance - she spends it on Xmas presents - we rip up the cheque she sends us. as to my husbands heating cheque we have a few favourite charities.

JessM Thu 14-Jul-11 15:19:34

Oh mine is 61 and a 1/4 - beat you to it! They said on the radio lunchtime "all over 60s and I thought - blow me down, really!

Blimey I thought this was a straightforward, cheap way of getting money to people who were "fuel poor", but looking at the website it probably requires an army (or at least a regiment) of civil servants to administer it. I think I would prefer the money to go to those who most need it. Preferably in ways that makes their houses more efficient and cosy e.g. more effective heating systems, insulation. But it is a tough call when there is immediate need and many of the older people who really need help will not accept a grant (much resistance to notion of free insulation from over 70s apparently - probably because the government would not market it and left it to insulation companies to do so.) And of course grants now phasing out...

crimson Thu 14-Jul-11 14:11:53

I thought they'd stopped the fuel payment? if they haven't do I get it when I'm sixty or when I reach my 'pensionable age' which is 61 3/4?

jangly Thu 14-Jul-11 12:49:24

If people start saying its not necessary, nobody is going to get it. Its too expensive to means test it. They will just do away with it.

jangly Thu 14-Jul-11 12:48:31

You can give it to Age UK.

jangly Thu 14-Jul-11 12:47:52

I think we should accept the Winter fuel payment and if we don't need it, hand it over to charity.

JessM Thu 14-Jul-11 12:29:41

Numbers up again for households in "fuel poverty" - i.e. spending more than 10% of household income on fuel. Government minister on the radio is saying that Green Deal is going to make homes more energy efficient. It will not be a panacea or a replacement for the Warm Front grant scheme. It is a going to be a kind of "low cost loan" for energy efficiency measures, but they don't want to call it that.
Meanwhile someone like me, over 60, with a younger husband earning a good income and living in an energy efficient house, will get a winter fuel payment of £200!
Do we agree with the winter fuel payment or should the money be spent in a different way? Anyone tried to get a Warm Front grant lately? Anyone got a social landlord who is doing something to help?