Free cash on way to help pay for food and energy bills but warning issued on cost of living support

free cash on way to help pay for food and energy bills but warning issued on cost of living support

Support will help families pay the bills.

A crucial cost of living payment is on the way for millions of families during February. The latest energy bills discount will enter bank accounts or be applied through vouchers within days.

But households are being braced for a shock when the Government support scheme ends in March AND energy prices rise again. The support has helped to partially protect families from unprecedented gas and electricity costs but a shock could be in store for people when they check their bills in April.

The scheme has knocked £67 or £66 off everyone’s energy bills since October, meaning costs, although still sky-high, have not been as huge as they otherwise would have been. The help, which has acted as a sort of support blanket, will disappear after March.

For those who pay by direct debit, the latest discount will kick in on the day bills are normally paid. The discount will either be automatically taken off bills or be paid in immediately after the usual amount is taken.

Those who use prepayment meters and top up their credit before using energy should be provided with discount vouchers in the first week of each month. These will be sent by text message, email or post.

Families are braced for a double shock in April as not only will the energy bill discount come to an end, the Government’s Energy Price Guarantee will also be watered down. The Guarantee currently keeps typical bills at £2,500 a year but that will rise to £3,000.

And that’s only typical bills. Those who use more will still pay more.

A woman with a number of health problems, meaning she rarely leaves her house and has to keep it heated, told Birmingham Live earlier this month she doesn’t know how she will cope when the latest rise to bills kicks in.

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