Energy Assistance in Virginia

The energy assistance program in Virginia is designed to help households with low incomes with their energy needs. Energy assistance in Virginia through the Virginia Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program supports households that pay an exorbitant amount of their monthly income towards their heating or cooling bills. The Virginia Low Income Home Energy Assistance program has four distinct components, which include Fuel Assistance, Crisis Assistance, Cooling Assistance and Weatherization. To qualify for Virginia low income energy assistance, a household must meet the criteria that comprise of both demographic and income information. This information determines Virginia energy assistance benefits to which a particular household in the state is entitled.

 

Types of Energy Assistance in Virginia

The energy assistance program in Virginia has four separate parts to it, which each has different eligibility requirements and varying needs to qualify. The first part of the Virginia energy assistance program is the Fuel Assistance component, which offsets heating fuel costs. The second section of the program is the Cooling Assistance part of the program. Virginia residents may apply for this assistance to assist them with paying for their air conditioning bills and any equipment needed to keep their cooling systems working properly. The weatherization part of energy assistance in Virginia, administered by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, is used to assist households with making their homes more energy efficient with things such as insulation installation, thus lowering their monthly bills. The final element of the energy assistance program in Virginia is the Crisis Assistance program. Crisis Assistance applies only to heating emergencies.

Virginia Energy Assistance Eligibility

The Virginia energy assistance application helps officials determine who qualifies for aid. Petitioners for energy assistance in Virginia must be residents of the state as well as demonstrate financial need. Similar to the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program, households must not have earnings higher than a certain threshold. This income requirement for energy assistance eligibility is dependent on how many people live in the household. Larger families may have higher earnings and still qualify for assistance then households with fewer members. Additionally, since the income requirement for government assistance is relative to the federal poverty level, which can fluctuate each year, petitioners should reference the Department of Social Services to ensure that the guidelines are current.

Each component of the program has its energy assistance eligibility requirements as well as the income level and residency requirements. The Fuel Assistance part of the energy assistance in Virginia program mandates that those who qualify must be responsible for their heating costs as opposed to those living in licensed facilities or subsidized housing in which their heating costs are included. Likewise, applicants must bear some part of the cooling expense to meet the Virginia energy assistance eligibility requirements for the Cooling Assistance part of the program. The household composition must also include someone who is 60 years of ago and considered vulnerable, someone who is disabled or younger than six years of age. Virginia energy assistance benefits for the Crisis Assistance require that there be a lack of heat, a certainty that discontinuation of heating is near or that the heating equipment is not functioning properly or safely.

Furthermore, energy assistance in Virginia takes into consideration any members of the household who participate in other assistance programs such as TANF, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), which may automatically make the household eligible for Virginia low income energy assistance.

Find out what the income and other requirements for assistance are by downloading our in-depth guide.

How to Apply for Energy Assistance in Virginia

Virginia residents who need to apply for the energy assistance in Virginia must first determine which part of the program to request, as each component has its separate application. Those wishing to receive comprehensive Virginia energy assistance benefits must apply to every component of the assistance program in which they desire to participate. There are typically two different ways in which potential participants may submit applications to receive benefits.

Each component of the energy assistance program has a downloadable application online. Residents can apply for the energy assistance by downloading the form to complete by hand and submit by mail. Residents will need to know which documents must accompany the application for assistance, as these will be needed to determine eligibility. Needy residents can also complete the Virginia energy assistance application directly online, which also acts as a screening method. Petitioners can discover if they meet the Virginia energy assistance eligibility requirements for aid.

However, for Weatherization energy assistance in Virginia interested households must contact the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development that administers this particular component of the program. Residents cannot apply for the weatherization assistance in Virginia by online or mail submission.

Download our comprehensive guide to discover how to apply for energy assistance successfully.


Virginia Department of Social Services