Do you need help with your home energy bills? The State of New Jersey offers Assistance Programs that can help.
Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
LIHEP or HEA is a federally funded program that helps low-income households pay for heating cost (includes: electric, natural gas, oil and other deliverable fuels). Even if your heat is included in your rent, you may qualify. LIHEAP grants are also available for medically necessary cooling costs. Applications are accepted from October 1 through July 31. (See Chart for income limits). LIHEAP is administered by the Department of Community Affairs.
Universal Service Fund (USF)
USF is a program created by the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities to help low-income households pay for their electric and natural gas costs. To be eligible for USF, your household must:
- Be income eligible
- Spend more than three percent of household income on gas and/or electricity (or spend more than 6% of household on electric heating). Apply any time of the year. USF is administered by the Department of Community Affairs.
*For a list of agencies that accept USF/LIHEAP applications and more information, go to the website: http://www.energyassistance.nj.gov or call toll free 1-800-501-3102.
Household Size/USF Program/LIHEAP Program
Lifeline Utility Assistance Program is for eligible low-income senior citizens and the disabled. Lifeline benefits help eligible homeowners and renters with electric and natural gas costs. Apply for Lifeline with the NJSAVE application. Call 1-800-792-9745 for more information or go to http://www.aging.nj.gov.
PAGE grants help gas and electric customers prevent disconnection of service or restore service. For more information, please go to http://www.nj.gov/bpu/assistance/programs and click on “PAGE”. PAGE can assist households at or below the New Jersey median income ($118,440 for a household of four persons).
Dial 2-1-1 any day, nay time for confidential referrals to local health and human service assistance services or search NJ 2-1-1’s online database at: http://www.nj211.org. NJ 2-1-1 is funded by the United Ways of NJ in partnership with the State of NJ.
How NJ can Help: Other Programs:
New Jersey Shares (NJ Shares)
NJ SHARES provides assistance o households in need of temporary help paying their energy bills due to a financial crisis. Apply online at http://www.njshares.org or call 866-657-4273 for more information.
Winter Termination Program (WTP)
WTP protects residential customer from disconnection of natural gas and electric service from November 15th-March 15th if they participate in: USF, LIHEAP, Lifeline Utility Assistance Program, Pharmaceutical Assistance to the Aged and Disabled (PAAD), Work First New Jersey/Temporary Assistance to Needy Families or Federal Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Also, persons unable to pay their utility bills because of circumstances beyond their control may request the protection of WTP. Customers should make every effort to pay as much of their bill as possible during the WTP period to avoid a large overdue balance at the end of the WTP.
How do I enroll in WTP?
You must call your utility company and request protection under the WTP and explain why you need this protection. For more information about the WTP or if you have a complaint about your utility company, please call the Board of Public Utilities at : 1-800-624-0241. You can also view the Utility Customer’s Bill of Rights at the website:
How NJ can Help:
Have your home Weatherized for Free!
What is Weatherization?
Weatherization is the installation of home energy efficiency measures to help reduce energy bills.
Eligible participants are provided with:
- A free home energy audit to see how much money can be saved on energy bills through weatherization.
2. Installation of recommended free energy efficiency measures, which may include energy efficient appliance replacement at no cost.
There are two free Weatherization programs in New Jersey:
Comfort Partners is an energy saving and education program that directly installs energy savings measures FREE of charge for qualified low-income customers. Comfort Partners is sponsored by the Board of Public Utilities NJ Clean Energy Program. Call 1-800-915-8309 or go to:
http://www.njcleanenergy.com/CP (energy or gas heat only)
Weatherization Assistance Program:
This Department of Community Affairs program assists qualified, low-income households in weatherizing their homes, improving their heating system efficiency and conserving energy. Households that apply for USF or LIHEAP can check a box on that application to request weatherization.
For information go to:
Disclaimer: This information was taken from the NJ Department of Community Affairs pamphlet and I give them full credit for the information. Please check out the attached links for more information or call the numbers above to talk to the departments.