Having considered the responses, we intend to proceed with the proposed one-year extension of the Warm Home Discount scheme, and to implement the key proposals in the consultation.
This includes maintaining:
- the current rebate amount of £140
- Core and Broader Group eligibility criteria
- energy supplier participation thresholds
We will also introduce some changes to the scheme operation and Industry Initiatives, such as:
- a cap on the individual energy debt write-off allowed
- the removal of restrictions on providing financial assistance to households eligible under the Core and Broader Groups
- requiring provision of smart meter advice as part of Industry Initiatives
- introducing consumer protection requirements for boiler and central heating system installations under industry initiatives through registration with TrustMark
The only proposals we do not intend to take forward are:
- the introduction of technical monitoring for boilers and central heating systems installed or repaired under the scheme, as auditing will be covered by TrustMark registration
- the requirement on failing energy suppliers to report on paid and unpaid Core and Broader Group customers and Industry Initiatives spending, as similar outcomes will be achieved by newly introduced Customer Supply Continuity Plans under Ofgem’s Supplier Licensing Review
Subject to Parliamentary approval of the amending legislation, the regulations covering the new scheme year will take effect in the summer and provide continuity for winter 2021 to 2022. While the regulations will come into force after the usual start of the scheme year, we intend Industry Initiatives spending to count towards non-core obligations from 1 April 2021, as long as they are subsequently approved by Ofgem.
As outlined in the Energy White Paper 2020, we intend to consult later this year on the future of the scheme beyond 2022, including on reforms to better target fuel poverty.