E.on Next to cut winter bills by up to 50% for some customers on low incomes – here's what's happening
If you're an E.on Next customer, look out for a message from the firm offering you up to 50% off your bills this winter. The supplier has launched a new support scheme for some of its existing customers on low incomes or with medical needs.
E.on Next's new 'Winter Affordability Support Scheme', which launched on Sunday 1 October, is expected to benefit tens of thousands of its customers. It includes a discount for some, as well as a free insulation offer as part of the Great British Insulation Scheme. Below we explain how the discount element of the scheme works and who can get the help.
For more info on how to get help with your energy bill, whether you're an E.on Next customer or not, see our What to do if you're struggling to pay for energy guide.
Update: 13 October 2023: E.on Next has clarified the scheme's eligibility criteria after MSE flagged inconsistencies and worrying reports from users
After this story was featured in our weekly email on Tuesday 3 October, we received reports from a number of MoneySavers who told us they'd been turned down for the discount despite seemingly meeting the eligibility criteria.
We put this directly to E.on Next, and the firm repeatedly told us the information it had initially given us was correct. However, that information didn't match the official terms for the scheme listed on E.on Next website, nor did it match what E.on Next had published in its blog announcing the scheme.
Over the past week, we have continued to push the firm to clarify the exact criteria and make sure the information it puts out is accurate. After a lot of back and forth, E.on Next has now updated its website, and the scheme's terms, to provide much more detail on who's eligible.
As a result, the final criteria below looks different to what we had before – but it should hopefully give you a much better idea of whether you might be able to get the discount.
Who's eligible for E.on Next's energy bill discount
To be eligible for the scheme, you need to...
1. Meet ALL THREE of these:
A) Have been an existing E.on Next customer by 25 September 2023; and
B) Have a smart meter (or agree to have one installed); and
C) Pay for your energy by fixed monthly direct debit (unless you're on a prepayment meter).
2. Meet AT LEAST ONE of these:
D) Have an annual household income of under £19,000 and be eligible for the Warm Home Discount or have been previously eligible for the so-called 'broader group' Warm Home Discount in England and Wales;
E) Have an annual household income of under £19,000 and "an income and expenditure deficit" (in other words, have less money coming in than what you need for key living costs);
F) Have an annual household income of under £31,000 and medical dependency needs. E.on Next's list of medical dependencies is as follows: a) nebuliser or apnoea monitor, b) heart-lung or lung ventilator, c) dialysis, feeding pump or automated medication, d) oxygen concentrator, e) MDE electric showering.
So if you meet ALL of the criteria in point 1 (A and B and C), plus ONE of the criteria in point 2 (D or E or F), you should be eligible.
How the discount works and how much you'll get off bills
If you meet the criteria above but DON'T have any energy debt on your account, you'll get 25% off E.on's standard tariff rate until March 2024.
If you meet the criteria AND you have energy debt, you'll get 50% off E.on's standard tariff rate until March 2024. In addition, if you keep up with your monthly payments for the duration of the scheme, any outstanding debt you have at the end of it will be wiped.
Once you've joined the scheme, the 25% or 50% discount will be applied to your bill automatically each month and E.on Next will update the price on your meter to reflect the discounted rate.
If you're on E.on Next's Pledge tariff, or any of its fixed deals, you'll need to leave that behind to get this discount
Provided you meet the eligibility criteria, you can get the discount regardless of which tariff you're currently on – this includes those who've signed up to E.on Next’s 'Pledge' tariff, which currently tracks around 3% below the Price Cap.
However, you will need to leave your existing deal behind in order to benefit. E.on Next has confirmed you won't be charged any early exit fees to do so.
Once the discount ends on 1 April 2024, you'll then be automatically moved on to E.on Next's usual non-discounted standard variable tariff, though at that point you can choose to take an alternative tariff available at the time.
It's worth noting that the savings from the winter discount are likely to outweigh any losses from giving up your fixed-term or fixed tariff, especially as winter is typically when households use the most energy – though it's impossible to say for sure without a crystal ball.
(An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that you would need to be on E.on Next's standard tariff to benefit, but the firm has since clarified that this isn't the case.)
Look out for a message from E.on Next inviting you to sign up – but beware of scams
E.on Next told us it had started proactively contacting customers who could be eligible via email, letter, phone and text message from 25 September 2023.
The sign-up process will vary depending on how E.on Next gets in touch. For example, if you receive an email, you'll receive a link taking you to your online account, where you will then be able to follow signposting allowing you to switch to the scheme. You'll be prompted to book a smart meter appointment if you don't have one.
All communication should direct you to either E.on Next's customer services team or to your online account. Most text messages from E.on will come through as 'E.on Next' and all emails will come from 'email@example.com'.
In all cases, if you get an email or text and you're not sure whether it's genuine, don't reply or click on any links. Instead, contact E.on Next directly on 0808 501 5200. The same applies if you get a suspicious phone call – just hang up and call back on the number above.
For more info on avoiding fraud, see our 30+ ways to stop scams guide.
If you think you're eligible but haven't heard anything, here's what to try
E.on Next told us it will use the information it already holds about customers, such as whether they are eligible for the Warm Home Discount scheme or if they are on the Priority Services Register, to determine who might be eligible and will contact them directly. It added that it will contact all potentially eligible customers.
If you think you might meet the criteria but haven't yet been contacted, here are the steps you can take:
What other energy suppliers are doing to help customers this winter
Like last winter, several energy suppliers are providing their customers with extra funding and support packages to help ease continued, excessively high energy costs this winter.
For example, EDF has announced it will cut bills for some customers eligible for the Warm Home Discount by £30 this winter, while Ovo Energy will be giving away free energy-saving products as part of its winter support package starting on Monday 16 October.
We've asked other major energy suppliers what, if any, extra support they'll offer customers this winter. For the latest updates and full info on the different support you can get, see our Energy bill help guide.