Heating and Cooling Subsidies Paid to Low Income Households

Goals

To create a list of countries that provide heating and cooling assitance subsidies to their citizens in need of this assistance. The list should include the name of the program, a brief description of what it does, and what its eligibility requirements are.

Early Findings

  • England offers a Warm Home Discount, a Cold Weather Payment, and a Winter Fuel Payment to eligible people/families. The eligibility requirements for varies for each of these subsidies.
  • The be eligible to apply for the Warm Home Discount, the person applying either must contact their electricity supplier directly. They must either already get the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit or they must have a low-income and and meet the other criteria for eligibility put in place by their electricity supplier. The other criteria are not disclosed publicly. Whether or not someone qualifies for these subsidies is at the discretion of the energy supplier and heating oil supplier. The Warm Home Discount pays a one-time amount of £140 directly to the electricity supplier.
  • To be eligible to apply for the Cold Weather Payment, the person applying must also receive at least one of the following benefits: Pension Credit , Income Support , income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance , income-related Employment and Support Allowance , Universal Credit , or Support for Mortgage Interest and meet other criteria that differs based on which other benefit the person applying receives. This payment is paid to those who qualify only when the average temperature in the area is either forecast to be or actually recorded as zero degrees celsius or below for 7 consecutive days. The subsidy paid is £25 for each 7 day period of extremely cold weather.
  • The Winter Fuel Payment is only available to people on or before April 5, 1954 and is usually paid automatically to anyone already receiving a State Pension or another social security benefit.

  • The Unites States has the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). Eligibity is based on household size and total income. Currently, eligibility for a single-person household stops when total income exceeds $18,735 while the maximum total incone for an eight-person house hold is $65,145. LIHEAP provides both heating and cooling assistance to households based on family size and total annual income. The amount of the subsidy depends on the factors presented by each household. One-time emergency help with payments is also available to those who qualify.

  • Canada uses the Low-income Energy Assistance Program (LEAP) to provide heating and cooling assistance to low income households. Eligibiliry is based on household size and total combined income. Currently, a single-person household with a total income of less that $28,000 would be eligible while a seven-person household would need a total combined income of less that $52,000 to be eligible. The amount of the subsidy depends on the factors presented by each household. One-time emergency help with payments is also available to those who qualify.

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