Revisions to the government's Warm Front scheme will see more households eligible for help from 12 September.
New regulations come into force on 12 September, which will align the income-based qualifying benefits of Warm Front with those to be used for the forthcoming Affordable Warmth group under the Energy Company Obligation.
Householders who currently qualify under the scheme rules will still be able to get help, but the Department of Energy & Climate Change said these new changes will mean an even greater number of households will be able to benefit from the assistance available.
Help will continue to be targeted at households living in properties that are poorly insulated or do not have a working heating system. However, the qualifying Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP) threshold for the property will be increased from 55 to 63.
Energy & Climate Change Minister Greg Barker said: "Changes to the rules on who can get help under Warm Front will mean even more people will be able to keep warm this winter. Warm Front is still very much open for business and it’s easy to apply. All you have to do is call 0800 316 2805 and, if you’re eligible, the Warm Front team will do all the paperwork for you.”
Warm Front provides government grants to people in poorly-heated or insulated homes to pay for boiler repairs, new central heating systems and insulation work. Those eligible can apply for up to £3,500 towards the cost of the work, or up to £6,000 for homes not connected to mains gas.
Warm Front is still open to new applications, with a budget of £100 million in 2012/13 to provide insulation and heating measures for qualifying households.
The scheme is targeted at people on certain income-related benefits. Applicants must own their home or rent it from a private landlord. The measures provided under the scheme are tailored to the requirements of each property, drawn from the measures listed below:
Further details on the Warm Front scheme and how to apply can be found on www.direct.gov.uk/warmfront.