Free Government Grants to help you Pay for Utility Bills
Utilities such as electricity, heat, hot water and gas are essentials for our daily living. There would not be possibilities of seeing the sun go down, take hot showers, store food, prepare meals and stay warm when the temperature drops without the availability of these utilities. It doesn’t seem the utility companies care much about the importance of the services they offer. There seems to be a daily rise in the cost of this electricity and every other power source.
High Utility Bills Cost
Virtually every other essential in the US has made it increasingly difficult for the average person to keep their power on with the increasing cost of utilities. The high cost of utility bills is difficult for people who are working full-time jobs to afford. These important services are however not available to people who are having mediocre jobs or are unemployed for one reason or the other. If you are one of the people having issues with paying utility bills, the good news for you may be able to find the financial assistance you need in order to keep your power on and this can be made possible with utility grants.
What are Utility Grants?
Funds set aside by the federal government, state governments, non-profit organizations and other entities to provide assistance to those who are in need is regarded as grants. Funds that are specifically reserved to help those who are struggling to pay their power bills are known as utility grants.
Grants in form of financial relief or other assistance programs that can be used to help cover the cost of electricity, oil, gas and other utility payments are given by the federal government and the local state agencies.
How to Get Assistance for Your Utility Bills
The first thing you should do is to contact your utility provider if you are having a hard time making ends meet and you are unable to keep up with the cost of your power bills. Several utility services work directly with government agencies to assist with the implementation of programs that are designed to help low-income individuals and their families by paying their bills. When your bills have started piling up and you are unable to pay them, reach out to your provider to avoid having your power shut off.
How to make it Easier?
Utility companies generally will work with you in order to set up a payment plan. An example is they may divide your bill over a 12 month period. This is to split it in to an equal amount over the course of a year. This will help you to know the precise amount you will owe every month. You will be able to allocate funds accordingly this way. You can also reach out to the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUG) which is a government program that provides financial assistance for utility payments as an addition.
Emergency Help for Overdue Utility Payments
Programs that can assist low-income earners with paying for the essential items that they need such as food, clothing and housing are offered by the federal government. Assistance for utility bills is added to it. Essentials such as power are offered by several non-profit organizations and other community programs that provide financial assistance.
These agencies are dedicated to providing emergency support to those who are struggling financially and cannot afford to pay for the basics, such as electricity, oil, and gas. Help is offered in the form of monetary grants, which are awarded on an income basis. As long as the funds are available to provide help and you can demonstrate that you need assistance, you can receive free money to help you cover a part of your utility bills so that your power will remain or, if your power has been turned off, so that it can be restored.
When can I apply?
You many need to work with more than one organization that provides financial assistance to get the full amount owed if you need help covering the cost of your entire past-due bills. You should however, be conscious of the fact that funds may not be always available to you.
This is especially true during certain times of the year, such as the winter, when many people, like you, are also struggling to pay their power bills and is also in need of assistance; during these times, funding may run out. Furthermore, you have to prove that you are eligible for assistance.
The Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
A grant program that offers low-income individuals and their families with assistance for their utility payments is LIHEAP. Applicants that are qualified reap the benefit of this grant one time and the funding is directed toward power bills strictly.
Your annual income must be a certain percentage below the federal poverty level in order to qualify for the grant. Funds approved through this program are given out in form of checks. They are usually sent out in the first week of the New Year to the applicants that qualified for it. With this grant funding, if you have outstanding utility bills, you may be able to pay off the balance so that you can start the beginning of the year with a clean slate.
Home Weatherization Grants
Homeowners who need to make repairs to their properties can always go with the home repair grants to help them fund their needs. Funding to improve the safety and energy efficiency of a property is sponsored by the federal government. Home Weatherization grants can be used to repair:
- Damaged roofing
- Mold remediation
- Septic tank repairs
- Insulation replacement
- Furnace repairs and replacements
Those who are receiving federal assistance, such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) are automatically eligible for the Home Weatherization Grant. If you aren’t receiving other forms of assistance and you want to find out if you qualify, contact the government to learn more.
For safety and well-being, power is very important. Keeping the power alive is however, difficult for most Americans. Options above are available to you if you are one of the people finding it difficult to pay utility bills.