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Charnwood Community Action - Help and advice paying your bills

Due to essential maintenance being carried out by Pay360, customers may experience online payment disruptions on Sunday July 5 between 4:30-6:30am and Tuesday July 7 between 6-7am. We apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Residents in Leicester and its outlying areas, including Birstall, Thurmaston and Wanlip in Charnwood, are to be asked to continue to follow stricter lockdown restrictions for at least two weeks, and non-essential shops will be closed. More information - including frequently asked questions and a postcode checker - can be found at www.charnwood.gov.uk/restrictions.

Below is advice for residents to save money on their bills at home:

If you are struggling to get food or have no support network, friends or family to help you with this please contact Charnwood Community Action.

The Money Saving Expert website has a page dedicated to helping people save money through the coronavirus. It can be found at www.moneysavingexpert.com/news/2020/03/uk-coronavirus-help-and-your-rights/

The Bridge in Loughborough are continuing to work consistently to protect the homeless from the dangers of sleeping rough, support families thrust into financial uncertainty and advise those suddenly struggling with rent or mortgage payments. For help please ring 0800 038 5964.

Useful links for saving money advice and services

Citizens Advice Charnwood

Citizens Advice Charnwood are currently offering all their services via telephone only. All face to face services at Loughborough, Shepshed and Syston have been suspended.

During this difficult time, if you have an urgent enquiry please call 01509 649605 and an adviser will call you back.

This is a limited service and is only operational on:

  • Mondays 9.30 - 3.00
  • Tuesday 9.30 – 12.00
  • Thursdays and 9.30 – 3.00

If you cannot get through, please try again later.

The Help to Claim Universal Credit telephone number is 0800 144 8444. Webchat for the service can be accessed at: www.citizensadvice.org.uk/about-us/contact-us/contact-us/help-to-claim/

Saving on your energy bills

Energy suppliers are offering some help to those who may struggle to pay bills as a result of the coronavirus pandemic – both prepay and credit meter customers.

Topping up prepaid energy may be difficult if self-isolating, but some firms will help.

The Government and energy suppliers have agreed to new emergency measures to help prepayment customers unable to top up during the pandemic, including posting cards loaded with emergency credit to those who are self-isolating, adding discretionary credit to your meter, and allowing you to nominate someone to top up for you.

Here's what the prepay energy providers have committed to so far:

Help for prepaid energy customers

Whether you're on a standard credit meter or a prepayment meter, energy suppliers are urging you to contact them via email or live chat first, where possible, with any non-urgent queries, to keep phone lines free for those with serious issues or in vulnerable situations.

British Gas

Hasn't yet committed to sending out top-up cards or keys loaded with credit.

If you're in isolation and you think you'll use up your balance and emergency credit, contact British Gas and it has said it'll find a solution on a case-by-case basis. See its FAQs and/or call 0333 202 9802.

EDF

EDF says it can post top-up cards or keys loaded with credit to your home. Call 0333 200 5100.

EDF has advised people who self-isolate to ask friends and family to help you top up. Where this is not possible, it says it can deliver 'preloaded' cards and keys if you need to self-isolate – this balance will then be collected back at a "suitable rate" later. See it's FAQs at www.edfenergy.com/coronavirus-advice.

E.on

E.on says it can post top-up cards or keys loaded with credit to your home or send an engineer to top up your meter. Call 0345 052 0000 or see its FAQs.

It says if your electricity meter falls below 50p of emergency credit, or you're off supply for gas, it can either send a card or key in the post, or it will send an engineer round to top up for you. However, it advises to top up a little extra or asking a trusted person to help in order to prepare for self-isolation.

Npower

Npower hasn't yet committed to sending out top-up cards or keys loaded with credit but has has said it is looking at increasing emergency credit to £45 to help those self-isolating. It also advises topping up more than usual in advance if you can or asking a truster person to help. See their website: www.npower.com/help-and-support/coronavirus or call 0800 073 3000.

Scottish Power

We've yet to hear back from Scottish Power – however it has published guidance on its website.

Scottish Power has advised people who need to self-isolate to ask a friend, neighbour or family member to top up for, and to add more credit to your meter than normal.

SSE

can post top-up cards or keys loaded with credit to your home.

It's encouraging customers to keep at least 14 days' worth of credit on their meter, and says it can help by reducing any debt repayments people are making through the meter. See its FAQs.

More pre-paid energy suppliers can be found on the document below:

On a credit meter?

Find out what firms are offering some customers at the links and numbers below:

 

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