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How to apply for heat assistance

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Don't get left in the cold just because you need help paying for heat. Learn how to apply for help during the winter with the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program.


Make sure you're eligible

The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program can help you pay your winter heating bills. If you're eligible, they'll make payments directly to your utility company. The program runs from November 1 - April 30. 

To be eligible, you must be at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty level. Check the federal poverty guidelines before you apply.


Find your local action center

You can apply for heat assistance with the program through an Action for Boston Community Development center.

First, find the center in your neighborhood. Then, give them a call to make an appointment to apply for heat assistance.


Prepare for your appointment

You need to bring a few things with you to your appointment:

  • Proof of income for anyone who is 18 or older in your household. You'll need proof for the last 30 days. If anyone is a full-time college student, you'll need a letter from the school.
  • You also need social security numbers for anyone in the home who is 18 or older.
  • Please bring a copy of your most recent lease or paid rent receipt. If you're a homeowner, bring a copy of your mortgage statement.
  • You also need to bring a copy of your most recent heating bill. This must be your primary heat source, whether it’s oil, gas, or electric.

The person applying for help also needs to provide a valid ID. You can use any one of the following:

  • proof of Social Security benefits, veterans’ benefits, or a pension or annuity
  • your MassHealth card
  • a copy of your social security card or your birth certificate
  • a paystub with your social security number
  • a copy of your driver's license or State ID
  • a copy of your food stamps or Medicaid card, or
  • a copy of your US Military card.

Your representative will help you apply for heat help and let you know if you've been accepted. Learn more about applying for the program.

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