The £200 energy bills rebate: everything you need to know

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Ofgem’s energy price cap has risen by 54%, meaning millions of UK households on standard variable tariffs (SVTs) are now paying hundreds of pounds more each year for their energy.

This, combined with the fact that running an energy comparison to switch to a cheaper tariff is out of the question – due to the fact that not even the best energy deals from the best energy suppliers can better the SVT – also means that more and more consumers will be looking for ways to help bring down these costs.

One response to this arguably quite significant part of the current cost of living crisis, is the UK government's ‘Council Tax Rebate’ scheme, which will see those of us living in properties in council tax bands A to D getting £150 off our April bills.

However, we’re also meant to be getting further support from an ‘Energy Bill Rebate’ scheme, that the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, has also previously announced - but this has yet to come into action.

Here, we’ve explained more about what this scheme is set to involve.

A £200 rebate for all UK households

To summarise, the government will be giving every UK household a £200 rebate on their energy bills. This will be in the form of a discount that will be automatically applied and credited to every home’s domestic electricity bills. 

Properties with prepayment meters will instead get their rebate through a voucher, a cheque or directly through their meter.

When will we get this rebate?

It’s believed this rebate will happen in October this year. This may coincide with the next energy price cap, which some forecasters are saying will rise once again.

We will have to pay it back

However, unlike the council tax rebate, we will have to pay this £200 rebate back. The repayment terms are believed to be in the form of an additional £40 on our annual energy bills over the next five years, starting in 2023.

However, some critics have condemned the fact that households don’t have the option to opt out of the rebate. Many also believe this is ultimately going to mean we end up paying more for our energy than we would without the rebate in the long term.

Those supporting the rebate in its current form argue that it will mean energy companies will be able to recoup money over a longer period, instead of continuing to hit consumers with sharp cost increases.

Is any more help on the way?

At the moment there’s speculation that the government will be looking at other ways to support those who are struggling the most with their energy bills. According to reports, a government spokesperson has said:

"We recognise people are facing pressures with the cost of living, which is why we are providing support worth around £12bn this financial year and next.

"We are supporting vulnerable households through initiatives such as the £500mn Household Support Fund and Warm Home Discount and will continue to listen to consumers and businesses on how to manage the costs of energy.

"We will provide an update in due course on further help for households across the UK to meet their energy costs in the face of rising global gas prices."

What else can be done to bring down costs?

Unfortunately, there currently isn’t a great deal that can be done to make this situation easier. Beyond sticking with the price cap SVT and taking measures to cut down on your consumption, you can also try speaking to your energy supplier about changing to a more manageable payment plan.

You may also wish to look into these support options, however, some schemes offering help over the winter have now closed. 

Richard Hart

Rich is a freelance copywriter and content strategist with over 10 years' experience. His career has seen him work in-house and in various agencies, producing online and offline content marketing campaigns and copywriting for clients in the energy industry.