Personal Finance

Pensioner set to lose hundreds of pounds over Warm Home Discount rule change

A pensioner is angry to miss out on hundreds of pounds during the  crisis due to Government changes around the Warm Home Discount scheme.

Ken Saunders, 69, will no longer benefit from the one-off £150 deduction on energy bills through the programme because many living in smaller homes no longer qualify.

The great-grandfather has suffered a double blow because his energy company Shell pledged to match the help being given to those who receive the Warm Home Discount.

He’ll therefore miss out on £300 as bills continue to rise, Birmingham Live reports.

Speaking to the publication, the father of seven said: “They are taking it away when we need it more than ever.

“I’ve been messed about quite a bit. First I was told I needed an energy certificate. It took me ages, I finally got one then I was still told I wasn’t eligible.

“They said my house was too small. I used to get it, for the last 12 years or so – every year. And I’ll lose out twice because Shell match it.

“I’ll lose £300 altogether which I think it disgusting.”

Mr Saunders, who lives in Frankley, Worcestershire, is among scores of pensioners and disabled people who have discovered they will no longer be getting the Warm Home Discount.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy claimed more people will actually get the Warm Home Discount this winter due to Housing Benefit being added to the eligibility criteria, even if thousands will also lose out.

But Mr Saunders will now have to use his heating less because of how much it’s costing him.

“My direct debit has gone from £73 a month to £245,” the pensioner said.

“I don’t put it on as much as possible, if I can help it. I’ve bought a dressing gown, a warm one, and an electric blanket so at least I can keep it off for a few hours.”

Speaking previously, a spokesperson for Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy said: “Our reforms mean that more households in fuel poverty will benefit from the Warm Home Discount than ever before.

“An extra 780,000 pensioners and low-income families will benefit this year compared to last and it is awarded according to people’s financial circumstances.”


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