With winter on the way, Colin Beattie, MSP for Midlothian North, has called on his constituents to ensure they are taking advantage of free help and support with energy bills.
Mr Beattie MSP said: “It’s really important to be prepared for winter. I want everyone in the constituency to understand what help is available for them, and for their family and friends. Being energy efficient and keeping bills under control is really important, so I’d encourage people to get in touch with their energy supplier to find out what support is on offer.
“There are a number of simple steps that every constituent should take to make sure they’re doing all they can to keep their bills down and their home warm.”
Sarwjit Sambhi, managing director of UK Home at Scottish Gas, added: “Winter can be a challenging time for households and many people may be concerned about their winter energy bill. Help is available and we urge customers to get in touch so we can offer them advice and support.
“In the long term, energy efficiency is still the best way to save money on bills. Scottish Gas is proud to be leading the roll-out of smart meters across Britain, which enable you to see how much energy you’re using in pounds and pence and identify where savings can be made.”
Get the best deal – Make sure you are on the best gas and electricity tariff for you. Scottish Gas tells customers in every bill if they have a better tariff for them, allows customers to switch between its tariffs without paying a penalty charge and offers flexible payment plans which enable customers to set and manage their own payments. Anyone worried about their energy bill can call Scottish Gas on 0800 048 0202 to discuss the help available.
Get a smart meter – Your energy supplier will be able to install a smart meter, which means an end to estimated bills. A smart energy monitor shows how much energy you are using, and what you are spending. Scottish Gas customers are provided with online tools to help them manage their energy usage. Find out more by visiting www.britishgas.co.uk/smartmeters
Extra support for vulnerable customers – Constituents may be entitled to extra support from the Government and their energy supplier if they meet certain criteria. Last year more than 700,000 British Gas and Scottish Gas customers in the UK received the Warm Home Discount, a one off discount of £140 on the electricity bill. The company has the broadest eligibility criteria of all energy suppliers. Scottish Gas customers should call 0800 072 8625.
The Scottish Gas Energy Trust – The trust is an independent charitable trust that offers advice and support for people who are struggling with their household bills. Since it was established in 2004, British Gas has provided £85 million of funding to the trust which has helped more than 176,000 people with debt advice and grants. For more information on the Scottish Gas Energy Trust, visit: www.britishgasenergytrust.org.uk
Keep your home warm, working and safe – Your gas appliances should be checked for safety every 12 months by a Gas Safe registered engineer. These important checks can detect a range of problems from boiler faults to gas leaks and carbon monoxide poisoning. For more information on booker checks, visit: www.britishgas.co.uk/homecare