Mayor Gary Christenson is encouraging residents to take advantage of available assistance programs to pay their home heat and electric bills this winter. Malden residents have seen their electricity bills increase 64% after National Grid raised rates in November, an average of an additional $100 per month per family. Average monthly gas bills will increase by 24%, for an average of an additional $47 per month.
“We know that many of our residents simply can’t afford an additional $150 every month for their energy bills,” said Mayor Gary Christenson. “That is why we are doing everything in our power to assist folks in both paying their bills every month and reducing their energy usage so that their bills are as low as possible.”
Nearly half of Malden residents are eligible for the state’s Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), which can provide up to $2,200 to eligible households to help pay their heating and electricity bills this winter. Applications for this assistance are open until April 30th, 2023, and the program can refund residents for bills they have already paid. Residents can learn more and get help applying by contacting Malden’s Office of Housing Stability at 781-397-7000 x5721 or by emailing at email@example.com.
Many Malden residents are also eligible for National Grid’s discount rate, which reduces utility bills by up to 40%. Residents who are eligible for the LIHEAP program or any other state benefit like MassHealth, SNAP, Section 8, or WIC are also eligible. National Grid can also help residents who have fallen behind on energy bills by setting up payment plans or, for income-eligible residents, forgiving part or all of the debt.
To be eligible for LIHEAP and the discount rate, households must have incomes below the following limits: $42,411 for a one-person household; $55,461 for a two-person household; $68,511 for a three-person household; $81,561 for a four-person household; $94,610 for a five-person household; $107,660 for a six-person household; $110,107 for a seven-person household; and $112,554 for an eight-person household. Approximately 45% of Malden households meet these requirements.
Residents who are unsure if they may use these programs are encouraged to check. Only one out of every six eligible households in Massachusetts currently receives these benefits, and the City estimates that there are 10,000 households in Malden who are eligible but not yet receiving this assistance. Residents can learn more and get help applying by contacting Malden’s Office of Housing Stability at 781-397-7000 x5721 or by emailing at firstname.lastname@example.org.