If you’re struggling financially and worried about how you’ll pay your heating bill this winter, you may be eligible for support from Uniting Vic.Tas.
Uniting Vic.Tas has partnered with Brotherhood of St Laurence and the Australian Energy Foundation to provide targeted advice and support to Victorians who need help with their energy bills.
The team of skilled advisors at the Energy Assistance Program will also help you find the best value deals and any money-saving grants and rebates you may be eligible for so you can crunch your energy costs and avoid bill shock.
Matt Cairns, Senior Manager of Uniting’s Energy and Financial Literacy Program said falling behind on energy bills continues to be one of the most common sources of financial stress raised with financial counsellors.
“The energy market can be really confusing and when people are faced with high bills and fall into debt, they often don’t know where to turn for support,” Mr Cairns said.
“Some people are struggling to catch up with their bills. But we also see elderly clients in winter who stop using their heating altogether because they are worried about the cost. That can seriously affect their health and welfare and we want to avoid that.
“We’ve seen some clients who are faced with unaffordable bills resorting to using credit cards and payday lenders. These can have huge interest rates attached to them creating a debt spiral from which they struggle to escape.
“Prevention is far better than cure, so if you’re struggling with your bills now, get in touch with us and we’ll support you to get back on track.
“Whether it’s sorting out a payment plan with your energy provider, how you can use your appliances more efficiently or finding the best energy deal for you, we’ll help give you some peace of mind.”
Under the Victorian Government’s Payment Difficulty Framework, energy companies must assist any household that engages with them, preventing them from being disconnected.
Support is available over-the-phone and we have interpreter support available in your language – start by calling 1800 830 029 or find out more about our Energy Services.