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Millions 'pass on energy bill aid'
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 30, 2010 3:34 pm 

Joined: Tue Mar 10, 2009 1:21 pm
Posts: 1457
Location: Hampshire
Millions of people are missing out on help with their energy bills because they do not think the assistance is for 'people like me', a survey has revealed.

Research commissioned by the Home Heat Helpline discovered that although 5.2 million households in Britain are eligible for free insulation grants and reduced tariffs from their energy suppliers, only 12% have claimed financial aid.

In monetary terms, this means that these households are missing out on energy bill savings of approximately £260 a year. With the icy temperatures and snow spreading across the country, Home Heat Helpline and Age UK urged people to take advantage of the help on offer.

According to the survey, nearly half (47%) of people who had not claimed said they thought the help on offer was not meant for 'people like me'. Meanwhile, 64% of eligible people said they either did not feel they qualified for assistance or were not sure.

Despite widespread accusations of a 'claimant culture' in Britain, 70% said people should only claim help if they really needed it, while 45% of those surveyed believed the help would not save much money.

Mervyn Kohler, of Age UK, said: 'Far too many households struggle to keep warm during the winter, yet energy suppliers actually offer various support packages to vulnerable and older households, and the key to getting the extra support is a call to the Home Heat Helpline.

'The problem is that many people just don't realise they're absolutely entitled to this support.

'You may not think of yourself as being eligible, but one in five of you are, and it's well worth a quick phone call to find out what's on offer from the energy suppliers - for free.'


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