Unitil New Hampshire financial assistance programs.
Some of the primary resources provided to low income families in the region include Neighbor Helping Neighbor, the New Hampshire and federal government Federal Fuel and Home Energy Assistance program (LIHEAP), and the Discount Rate Plan.
The first government funded program for Unitil customers in New Hampshire is the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). This is fully paid for by the federal government, and the resource provides cash grants and financial assistance to help with paying winter heating bills and preventing disconnections.
Assistance paid out to individuals will be based on the households annual income and also the number of members who reside there. Any type of cash payments made from the government will be paid directly to Unitil and not to the customer. Both homeowners and renters are eligible for the Fuel Assistance Program. You will need to apply at your local community action agency.
Weatherization, Home Energy Assistance, and energy conservation is offered by Unitil. The energy company has partnered with New Hampshire's Weatherization Assistance Network as part of this statewide program. In total up to $4000 in improvements can be made to lower-income households in the region. Most of the participants of the weatherization program are people, such as the elderly, who are most vulnerable to energy costs and spikes in bills, yet who do not have the means of making or paying for cost-effective energy efficiency improvements to their homes. All of Unitil's Home Energy Assistance and weatherization programs are offered free of charge.
In addition to the improvements, other goals of the program include educating customers on the benefits of home energy conservation and efficiency, with a goal of reducing usage.
Some of what can be installed in a home or apartment includes air-sealing and weather-stripping to shut out cold drafts, a complete home energy audit and recommendation report, Energy Star programmable thermostats, attic, wall and basement insulation improvements, hot water efficiency items, and Energy Star light fixtures and CFL light bulbs.
Conservation is also offered for Gas Income customers that meet pre-defined income guidelines. Unitil will once again work with local New Hampshire Community Action Agencies. Together this weatherization program will offer eligible customers free energy efficiency and conservation benefits, including home audits, energy assessments and the installation of weatherization measures which can include floor insulation, attic and wall insulation, weather-stripping, and caulking.
Another resource in New Hampshire is Neighbor Helping Neighbor. This service is offered by a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization. Unitil customers who are faced with a financial hardship or crisis may qualify for utility assistance, and up to $300 will be paid out at most once every two years. Candidates need to meet a number of qualifications in order to receive help. Once again, for information or to apply to the Neighbor Helping Neighbor program, call your local community action agency or Salvation Army center.
New Hampshire Statewide Electric Assistance Program can provide low income Unitil customers with a discount. The program was created as a result of the states electric utility deregulation. The total savings and discounts provided will range from 7 - 70% depending on the customer's household size as well as gross income.
Funding will vary, as will how and when someone can receive help. Total household income as well as the number of household members in the applicant’s home will determine eligibility for the New Hampshire discount program.
The discount that is provided as part of EAP will not apply to the Supplier Services portion of an electric bill when a customer chooses an independent supplier or energy provider for their electricity needs.
Natural Gas Discount Rate Program is offered for heating bills, but only for people who heat their homes with natural gas.
This particular discount is provided for customers who currently receive public or government assistance, such as:
- Supplemental Security Income Program
- Electric Assistance Program (EAP)
- Fuel Assistance/Low Income Home Energy Assistance (LIHEAP)
- Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8)
- Elderly Commodity Surplus Foods Program
- Aid to the Permanently and Totally Disabled Program
- Food Stamps Program
- Commodity Surplus Foods Program (for women, infants and children)
- Old Age Assistance Program
- Temporary Aid to Needy Families Program (TANF)
- Women, Infants and Children Program (WIC)
- HeadStart Program
In addition, those customers who are currently enrolled in the fuel assistance program (see above) will also automatically be placed in the discount rate program and do not need to separately sign up. Customers that participate in other eligible or qualified government programs should also please contact the Customer Service team at 866-933-3820 for additional application information.