Category Archives: Financial & Poverty Avoidance Advice

FINANCE: Age UK Advice Links

Age UK’s website is a brilliant source of information for older people. Amongst the many advice articles, leaflets and specialist features, their Money and Legal section is particularly helpful. Here are some of the key links from this section of their website:

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HEATING: Free Age UK Visits

Age UK Calderdale and Kirklees FREE Home Energy Visits

These visits aim to reduce people’s energy bills whilst keeping them warm and well at home by offering:

  • Practical advice about keeping warm
  • Information about winter benefits
  • Advice about smarter use of energy
  • Referral to other useful services if needed
  • Installation of free energy saving devices such as draught excluders,  radiator  panels, timers and cold alarms
  • Installation of free energy saving light bulbs

And best of all, it is all FREE

Home Visits

Age UK is working with E.ON and First Utility to provide Home Energy Visits. The aim of the visit is to deliver practical energy efficiency information and expert advice to older people. The project will enable people to change energy use behaviour and benefit from small practical measures which could potentially reduce their energy bills whilst remaining warm and well in their own homes.

How do I get a free home visit?

To qualify for the Home Energy visit you must be :

  • Over 65 and on low income (below £16,190 p.a )and /or
  • Over 65 and living with a disability or other medical condition
  • Over 65 and living in a hard to heat property.

For more information or to book your home energy check, please contact us on 01422 252040 / 01484 535994

MONEY: Universal Credit Help

Citizens Advice Calderdale has launched a new service called ‘Help to Claim’ for those who need to apply for Universal Credit in Calderdale.

They are working in collaboration with the Citizens Advice Network and more locally with Calderdale Council and Job Centre Plus (Calderdale) to support people in submitting their Universal credit application to get their first full payment.

Help will be tailored to the individual and be available; face to face, over the phone (0800 144 8444) and online through webchat and advice content (www.citizensadvice.org.uk). This may include assistance with the online application form or help with providing evidence like childcare costs.

The main drop-in has now moved to Customer First so that they can work with the existing Council team to help people start a claim and get ready for their work coach appointment. They will be there Monday to Friday, 10:00am-1:00pm for clients needing help with making a claim and generalist advice needs.

Just as a reminder, they continue to offer bespoke debt advice via their team of specialist debt caseworkers, who help people manage problem debt and the Improving Lives team who help clients make appeals in relation to ESA, PIP and DLA.

 

WINTER: Prepare Your House Now

It may be summer at the moment, but this is actually a great time to prepare for winter.

As winter arrives, if you haven’t already done so, you’ll be switching on your central heating systems, maybe for the first time since the end of last winter?

To ensure you don’t have to make any unnecessary callouts to your home because the central heating isn’t working, please check the following before you make that call.

– The boiler is switched on at the electrical point.

– The time clock is switched on.

– Room thermostat is turned up.

– Thermostatic radiator valves are turned on.

– Gas credit is available.

– Boiler is switched on for heating and hot water.

It’s always a good idea to try your boiler a few weeks before the weather turns cold. Plumbers are usually available before the heating season starts and you’ll have the comfort of knowing the heating is in good repair. Should you need any help please call Calderdale’s affordable warmth team on 01422 392199 and see if you qualify for funding towards a boiler repair, service or replacement.

MONEY: Scams Awareness

Scams Awareness is a yearly campaign by Citizens Advice which aims to help consumers to recognise scams and who know what to do when they see them. This year’s campaign will take place over two weeks, from the 10th-23rd June.

Whether you’re an individual consumer looking to protect yourself and your family from scams, or an organisation or group representing consumers, your efforts during the campaign are important.

Help CAB to spread the message that scams are crimes that can happen to anyone and we don’t need to be embarrassed if we fall victim to them.

Advice for consumers (Links to Citizens Advice website)

Resources for campaigners
Visit the Citizens Advice resource page to download resources to help you raise awareness of scams. You can also find resources from other partners here.

Resources will continue to be added in the run up to the campaign. If you would like to be notified when new materials are available please let CAB know you would like to be added to the campaign mailing list.

Let CAB know you’re taking part in the 2019 Scams Awareness campaign and sign up for the mailing list.

MONEY: Free Energy Advice

LEAP (Local Energy Advice Partnership) can help you to save money and keep your home warm and cosy.

If you’re eligible, you will get a FREE home visit from a friendly, qualified Home Energy Advisor.

LEAP can:

  • Help check if you are on the cheapest energy tariffs
  • Install FREE, simple energy saving measures
  • Give you day-to-day energy efficiency hints and tips
  • Ensure your heating system is set up to keep you warm and save money.
  • Arrange a FREE telephone advice service to help with benefits, debt and other money problems.
  • Refer you for further energy efficiency improvements, such as loft insulation or a new boiler.

Are you eligible?

You may be eligible for the LEAP service if one of the below apply. If you:
• have a low income
• receive tax credits
• receive Housing Benefit
• receive an income or disability related benefit
• have a long term illness or disability.

Download the LEAP flyer for full details

MONEY: Avoid Bank Scams

Banking telephone Scams are on the increase. It’s always wise to know as much about potential Scams as possible, so here’s some advice on avoiding banking Scams.

Don’t throw out anything with your name, address or financial details without shredding it first. – This will protect you from ID Fraud.

If you receive an unsolicited email or phone call from what appears to be your bank or building society asking for your security details, never reveal your full password, login details or account numbers. Most banks will not approach their customers in this manner.

If you are concerned about the source of a banking call, hang up. Make sure if you call your bank to check it was them, before you make the call check for a dialling tone BEFORE dialling their number. The number will be on printed on your bank statements.

Check your statements carefully and report anything suspicious to the bank or credit company concerned.

Your bank will never come to your home address to collect you or to collect you bank cards. Some scammers will tell you that you have been a subjected to bank fraud and ask for your pin number. NEVER EVER give this number to anyone. Your bank will never ask customer for these details.

If you’re expecting a bank or credit card statement and it doesn’t arrive, tell your bank or Credit Card Company.

Don’t leave things like bills lying around for others to look at.

If you move house, always get Royal Mail to redirect your post.

Get regular copies of your credit report from a credit reference agency.

For further information please contact your Calderdale Crime Prevention Officers on 101.