The rising cost of living crisis is having a huge impact on many people’s financial situations. We’re very aware of the complexity of this situation and how the help people need will vary.
You can contact our friendly team of staff and volunteers for help and support by calling 023 8036 8636 (Mon & Tue 10am to 4pm) or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information about the service, click here.
Below you will find some useful contacts, information and resources to assist you in accessing support, if you are concerned about yours or a loved one’s situation.
Information and Resources
Check you are receiving the financial support you are entitled to
Ensuring you are receiving everything you are entitled to is very important, many people aren’t aware of the money they should be receiving. The organisations above will be able to discuss with you the different options available and guide you through any necessary application processes.
Dealing with benefits and claims can be confusing. We complete these free income maximisation checks for people over State Pension age to explore whether there are any benefits you could be claiming currently. We can help explain the application process and assist with applying if needed.
If you’re over State Pension age (currently 66 years old for men and women) and you need help with your personal care because of a physical or mental illness or disability, you may be able to claim Attendance Allowance. There is an application process which must be worked through for this. s possible.
Schemes which could provide support
Navigating the help available can be confusing and overwhelming. The following schemes are in place in Southampton:
Warm Home Discount
The Warm Home Discount provides a one-off payment to eligible customers to reduce their bills over the winter period. The final figure for support this year is yet to be released (currently this stands at £150). The money will act as a credit to your account, rather than paid to you directly, and will be paid between October and April.Changes are being made to the eligibility and claiming process for this winter. Currently, people in receipt of the Guarantee Credit portion of Pension Credit will receive this discount automatically, provided you or your partner are listed on the bill and that your supplier is part of the scheme. A list of the suppliers who are part of this scheme can be found here.
If you do not fall in to this category, specifications for a wider group of people who can also qualify will be released soon as well as how to apply. To make sure that you are eligible to receive any Warm Home Discount this winter, now is a good time to check that you are claiming all the benefits you are entitled to.
Housing Benefit and/or Council Tax Reduction
If you have to pay rent or Council Tax and you meet certain criteria you can apply for Housing Benefit and/or Council Tax Reduction. Click here for details and to apply.
Help for low-income pensioners
The Household Support Fund is administered by Southampton City Council. Click here for details.
Help with Water charges Reducing Energy costs
Click here for details of help from Southern Water.
Southampton Healthy Homes
Southampton Healthy Homes is the city’s affordable warmth programme. Managed by Southampton City Council and delivered by a team of experienced energy advisors at the Environment Centre (tEC), Southampton Healthy Homes offers support and advice to residents who are finding it difficult to pay their energy bills. Southampton Healthy Homes can help people reduce their bills, get in touch with their supplier, apply for energy and water bill discounts and access funding for home energy upgrades such as heating improvements, insulation and draught proofing. Please contact tEC on their Freephone number, 0800 804 8601 or visit www.environmentcentre.com/southampton-healthy-homes for more information.
Information from the Government website
The current crisis has increased the number of fraudsters operating scams by a variety of methods including telephone, doorstep, online and post; here are some links to help spot and avoid scams:
Help with finding or staying in work
Our national charity partner, Age UK, provides information on:
The Government provides help and support for older workers, including Pensions and finance in later life; Managing health and disability; Rethinking retirement; Employment support for the over 50s