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Home management - money and bills

Help with managing your money (budgeting) is available. It's important to regularly look at how much you are spending to make sure you are not paying for things you no longer need or use.

Benefits

Make sure you are getting all the benefits you should be. The benefits system is complex and often changes, which means many people are not claiming money that they are entitled to. 

Benefits calculator

The government can offer financial help for certain people during the winter.

If you are getting certain benefits, you can get a Cold Weather Payment. You will get a payment of £25 for each 7 day period of very cold weather between 1 November and 31 March.

You could get between £100 and £300 tax-free to help pay your heating bills if you are a certain age. This is known as a Winter Fuel Payment.

The Warm Home Discount Scheme could get you a £140 discount on your electricity bill.  Only certain people are eligible.

You might be eligible for financial help with your energy bills or a grant to make your home more energy efficient.

Priority Services Register

You can join the Priority Services Register with your energy supplier if you are disabled, chronically sick, have a long term medical condition or a sight or hearing impairment.

Citizens Advice have more information.

Saving money on your bills

Tips to save energy and lower your bills include:

  • turn off the heating in rooms you are not using
  • switch off the lights if you do not need them on
  • only fill the kettle with as much water as you need
  • line dry your washing instead of using a tumble dryer
  • close your curtains at dusk
  • use the right sized pan on the right size burner, and always use saucepan lids
  • turn your thermostat down by one degree
  • check that your energy supplier is offering the best tariff
  • use low energy light bulbs instead of normal bulbs
  • line your curtains with a thermal liner
  • fit a hot water tank jacket if your water tank does not have one

Help and advice on saving energy

There are other ways you can save energy that cost more at first, but could save you money later on. You could replace your boiler with a more efficient one, install proper insulation in your walls and loft or even generate your own energy by installing solar panels or a wind turbine.

The Energy Saving Trust provides free advice and information on ways you can save energy and the grants that may be available.

Healthy Homes Dorset can help you to keep warmer by installing loft and cavity wall insulation. They also offer free and impartial information and advice.

Certain water suppliers can offer you a discount if you are receiving Pension Credit. Check with your supplier to see if they can help.

Future planning

We have information on financial care planning.

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