Are You Eligible for a Free Boiler through Universal Credit under the Government Scheme?
The ECO Scheme of the government seeks to provide homeowners who are financially vulnerable with free boilers. The government offers eligible homeowners A-grade boilers with a very high energy efficiency rate (over 90%). The Scheme takes away the entire financial liability incurred in procuring a new boiler and places this liability on the UK’s major energy companies, including Npower, Eon, Scottish Power, British Gas, EDF, and SSE. Homeowners can enlist the help of service providers to determine eligibility, apply for a grant and oversee the installation of the new boiler under the Scheme.
Eligibility criteria under the ECO Scheme
Homeowners with a boiler over seven years of age can apply for the government boiler grant. Such homeowners automatically qualify for a free boiler under the ECO Scheme if they receive Pension Credit, Child Tax Credits, Working Tax Credits, Universal Credits, Income-related Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) and Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA). If homeowners do not receive these benefits but receive a combination of other benefits, they could also qualify for free boiler grants. You can determine your eligibility by filling out an application form online.
What is Universal Credits?
Universal Credit is a benefit offered by the government of the UK to households that have low incomes. It involves a payment made twice a month towards the living costs of the household. Universal Credits replace a number of other benefits provided by the government including Housing Benefit, Child Tax Credit, Income Support, Income-related JSA and ESA, and Working Tax Credits. However, Universal Credits cannot be claimed if the household receives or is eligible for severe disability premiums from the government.
Universal Credit recipients post pandemic
Universal Credit is a benefit offered to low-income households by the government. The pandemic caused a lot of people to receive cuts in their income, and many even lost their jobs. This has led to an increase in the number of people who have applied to receive Universal Credits. Over a million households have been recorded to have applied for Universal Credits in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. Earlier, a recipient of Universal Credits was also required to fall within a maximum income threshold to qualify for a free boiler grant; however, this has been removed, and households receiving Universal Credits, irrespective of annual income can apply for boilers under the Scheme.
Additional grant available for Universal Credits recipients
The financial havoc wreaked by the COVID-19 pandemic has led the government to offer an additional Central Heating grant to households that receive Universal Credits from January 2020. This is available to Universal Credits recipients who have never had a central heating system before. Households also qualify for the grant if their storage heaters (electric), panel heaters (electric) or wall heaters (gas) are broken. This grant is in addition to the new boiler grant for which households that receive Universal Credits qualify.