Households could get £150 energy rebate faster with direct debit, advice says
Households eligible for a £150 energy rebate can get their money faster by setting up a direct debit to pay council tax, the Local Government Association (LGA) has said.
Releasing the money to municipal taxpayers without direct debit agreements could take longer as local authorities will have to attempt to contact them about the reimbursement scheme and carry out checks, the LGA added.
The government previously announced a support scheme known as the Energy Bill Rebate to help households cope with rising energy costs, worth £9.1billion in 2022-2023.
This includes a £150 council tax rebate for households in England in tax brackets A-D and £144m of discretionary funding for billing authorities to support households in need but who are not eligible for the council tax rebate. Devolved administrations will also receive around £565million in funding to provide support, the government has previously announced.
The LGA said Hull City Council, for example, has 60,000 households in the city who are not currently paying council tax by direct debit.
Setting up direct debit means councils can automatically pay the £150 energy rebate directly to your bank account
Cllr Shaun Davies, Local Government Association
Almost half of the 37,000 council tax paying households in Dartford do not use direct debits while there are 30,000 people in Bolton without direct debit agreements in place.
Cllr Shaun Davies, Chairman of the LGA Resources Council, said: “This year will be more difficult than most, particularly for those on low incomes, so it is good that the government is stepping in to provide financial support to help to alleviate these pressures.
“Setting up direct debit means councils can automatically pay the £150 energy rebate directly to your bank account. It is quick and easy to set up the payment of housing tax by direct debit via your municipality’s website.
“You can still get the money if you don’t have a direct debit set up, but it could take longer as your council will have to contact you and then you will have to make a claim.
“Councils will also look to set up their local schemes to provide discretionary support to households who are not eligible under the terms of the reimbursement scheme, but who are struggling to meet the costs of rising utility bills. energy.”