We are excited to announce a new feature to calculate the entitlement to water social tariff schemes for all water companies in England and Wales. These are very challenging times for vulnerable people and this extra source of support can bring up to £370 per year and avoid, or get out, of problematic debt.
In our relentless effort to put more money into the pockets of financially vulnerable people, we are proud of offering the widest benefits coverage available in the market. While most of the benefits calculators include means-tested, contributory and non-contributory benefits, we also include passported benefits that can increase the income of most vulnerable people by more than £1,500/year.
Every water company has a social tariff scheme which can help reduce your bills if you’re on low income. Who is eligible for help and the level of support varies depending on your water supplier, your personal circumstances, your financial situation and the benefits you are already getting.
Social tariffs can reduce households’ water bills by 90% for the most vulnerable people, or £370 per year. According to Water UK, the average household water and sewerage bills in England and Wales are £408 per year.
We have used our benefits engine and analytics platform to understand the impact of this new benefit on our customers’ financial lives. Overall, 36% of our customers are entitled to water support schemes while single low-income households have the highest number of people entitled to social water tariffs.
According to our data, United Utilities and Affinity Water offer the water social tariff with the widest coverage. We note that customers’ income distribution, which is the main variable to calculate social water tariffs, was similar across all providers.
Passported benefits are a powerful tool to provide extra support to vulnerable people (e.g. single parents and households with a member with a disability) and can be worth up to £1,500 per year on top of other benefits.
Passported benefits are especially useful during the ongoing cost of living as they reduce essential households’ expenses such as energy (e.g. warm home discount and winter fuel payment) or food (e.g. free school meals, best start grant and best start food). You can read here about our benefits coverage and here about the impact of passported benefits.
We partner with a wide range of companies, from financial firms to government agencies and charities, to automatically identify households with unclaimed benefits, nudge them to check their benefits entitlement and support them on their benefits applications. Our partners embed our benefits platform in their user journeys to help their customers find an average extra income of £5,300/year while increasing customer loyalty and engagement.
Feel free to reach out if you want to explore how you can embed a benefits check into your digital journeys and view our benefits platform in action!