What help can you get paying your energy bills?
If you struggle to pay the day to day costs of running your home, you could qualify for a helping hand with your energy bills. Here are some of the grants and allowances that could help cut the cost of your gas and electricity.
1. Household Benefits Package
The Household Benefits Package is a set of allowances to help towards the cost of running your home.
If you’re eligible for the Household Benefits Package, you could get:
- A monthly gas or electricity allowance of €35 per month (€1.15 a day), all year round
- A free TV licence, from the next renewal date of your licence
To get the Household Benefits Package you must:
- Be living in Ireland full-time
- Be the only person in your household to receive it
- Have the electricity or gas bill in your name
- Be aged 70 or over
- Be aged under 70 and meet the additional rules. for ‘People aged under 70.’
How to apply
Apply for the Households Benefits Package online, by visiting the MyWelfare website.
If you can’t apply online, you can fill in the Household Benefit Package application form (pdf) and return it to the address listed on the back.
Find out more about the package and check if you qualify on Gov.ie.
2. Fuel Allowance
If you’re getting certain social welfare payments, you’ll qualify for the Fuel Allowance which helps with the cost of heating your home during the winter months.
Payments run 28 weeks from late September to April. If you apply later in the year, your payments will not be backdated.
Fuel Allowance lump sum
Fuel Allowance is usually worth €924 in total, and works out the same whether you choose weekly or lump sum payments.
How to apply
To apply for Fuel Allowance for the first time, you need to fill in a NFS1 form.
You can also visit the Gov.ie website to check if you qualify and find out more about the scheme.
Our guide How to claim the Fuel Allowance covers more about applying, and how to change your payment type.
3. Additional Needs Payment
The Additional Needs Payment is an extra payment that helps cover essential costs you can’t afford with your weekly income. You can use it to pay for fuel or electricity.
How to apply
To apply for an Additional Needs Payment, you need to fill in a Supplementary Welfare Allowance (SWA1) form and post it to your local Community Welfare Service.
To help process the claim, you should have your PPSN, proof of identity, as well as documents to show your income, expenses and financial situation.
4. Insulation Grants Ireland
Formerly called the Warmer Homes Scheme, the SEAI offer fully funded energy upgrades for qualifying homeowners in receipt of certain welfare benefits.
The purpose of these grants are to help make your home more energy efficient, and reduce your gas and electricity bills. Upgrades offered under the scheme include:
How to apply
Before you apply, you must:
- Own and live in your own home
- Own a home built and occupied before 2006
- Receive one of the welfare payments listed on their website
You must also decide what kind of energy upgrades your home needs. For more information on the grants available and how to apply, visit the SEAI website.
If you are not eligible for the scheme, you can still apply for other home energy upgrades.
Other ways to save on your energy bills
Once you’ve found the right financial support, it’s worth looking at other ways you could make your bills cheaper.
1. Switch to a cheaper tariff
You could save up to €463 by switching to a cheaper gas & electricity tariff which could make a huge difference to your household bills.
Switching is easy and takes just a few minutes. If you haven’t switched in the last 12 months then it’s even more likely that you could make some big savings. Here’s how to switch your gas and electricity supplier.
2. Make your home more energy efficient
One of the best ways to cut your energy bills if you don’t qualify for support is to make simple changes in your home, and use less gas and electricity.
There are lots of easy things you can do to make your home more energy-efficient, without spending any extra money.
See our top energy saving tips to get started.
Energy Poverty Action Plan
The government has launched a new €10 million fund to address energy poverty, and help those struggling to pay bills. Funds will be added to supports already in place, such as:
- Supports provided by energy suppliers
- The Additional Needs Payment
- Additional funding to Warmer Homes Scheme
The plan also captures measures implemented in 2022, such as the €600 Electricity Costs Emergency Benefit Payment, and the Fuel Allowance lump sum and increased eligibility.
Switch and save up to €463 on your energy bills
It only takes a few minutes to find a cheaper deal and start saving