If you are struggling to pay your electric bill in Delaware, we’ve found resources that can help! From federal programs like DEAP to local churches, there are many places you can turn for assistance when you need help paying your utilities.
In this article, we will review all of the government programs, nonprofits, and assistance programs available in your area.
Delaware Energy Assistance Program
The state administers several energy assistance programs that can help you save money on your utilities. You should look into all of these if you need help paying your electric bill in Delaware!
Although it’s called LIHEAP in most states, Delaware chooses to call their program the Delaware Energy Assistance Program. This program helps low income residents who have a net household income that is 60% of the state median income.
There are four parts to the DEAP program. You can receive help from more than one part of the program and you can reapply for assistance every year if you still need help and still meet the eligibility requirements.
No matter when you have a problem with your electric bill, you can apply for Crisis Assistance. This program is available throughout the year. You can even apply for Crisis Assistance if you’ve already received Winter Heating Fuel Assistance!
In order to get help from this program, you will need to show that you are experiencing a crisis. That just means that you have a disconnect notice. If you have a fuel tank reading below 10% or have past due bills, that can count as a crisis as well.
In order to apply for Crisis Assistance, you will need to contact the agency in charge of your area.
- Catholic Charities Diocese of Wilmington
- Energy Coordinating Agency
- In Kent County, call (302) 674-1782
- In New Castle County, call (302) 654-9295
- In Sussex County, call (302) 856-6310
Summer Cooling Assistance
If you’re struggling with your electric bill during the summer months, then you may be able to get a flat payment from the Summer Cooling Assistance program. This program can pay a portion of your utilities.
If you don’t have any way to cool your home, this program may also be able to provide an in-window air conditioner. The AC unit only has sufficient power to cool one room, but it’s a huge improvement over having no air conditioning at all!
To apply for Summer Cooling Assistance, you will need to contact First State Community Action Agency.
Winter Heating Fuel Assistance
If you need help with your electric bill in Delaware between October 1 and March 31, then the Winter Heating Fuel Assistance program is the first place you should turn for help. This program provides a supplemental payment toward your utilities, which reduces the portion that you have to pay.
It’s interesting to note that this program doesn’t just help with electric bills. It can help pay for natural gas, oil, kerosene, propane, coal or wood fuel as well.
Weatherization Assistance Program
If you are eligible for help with your electric bill in Delaware, then you may also be eligible for the Weatherization Assistance Program. This program can provide free energy-efficient upgrades to your home. Those upgrades can reduce the cost of your utilities while also improving the comfort of your own home.
If you are interested in the Weatherization services, then you need to call (302) 735-3480 to talk to the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) about this program.
More Help with Your Electric Bill in Delaware
Of course, the state isn’t the only organization that can help you with your electric bill in Delaware! There are many churches, charities and nonprofits that are also happy to assist you when you need help with your utilities.
Although Energize Delaware will not pay any amount toward your current past due balance, the program will provide free energy-efficient upgrades that can reduce the amount of your future electric bill! This program can give you up to $250 in free cost-saving tools when you receive an in-home energy assessment.
The free incentives offered by this program include:
- Free LED light bulbs
- Free faucet aerators
- Free efficient showerheads
- Free water heater pipe insulation
To get started with this program, check out the Energize Delaware website.
Good Neighbor Energy Fund
The Good Neighbor Energy Fund can help pay for your Delmarva Power bills if you are having a hard time covering your bill. This fund is managed by The Salvation Army in Wilmington, so you will need to contact their organization to receive assistance. The phone number for that office is (302) 472-0750.
Ingleside Homes helps low income seniors in Delaware with their electric bills. In order to get help, you will need to contact the Ingleside Senior Services Coordinator at (302) 217-6119 ext. 2260 or by emailing [email protected].
They can conduct a detailed in-home needs assessment to uncover other things that they may be able to help you with, as well. Their services include a wide range of things from free home repairs to Medicare counseling and more!
Lutheran Community Services
Lutheran Community Services helps low income residents of Wilmington and New Castle County with food, health services and emergency financial assistance. They can help you pay your electric bill, as well as your rent or security deposits.
You will need to complete a two-page intake form in order to receive assistance but they may be able to help you with the paperwork.
The Neighborhood House helps low income families with utility bills, clothing, food, diapers, school supplies, medical copays, holiday gifts and other needs. This organization also provides help with budgeting and financial literacy.
If you need help, you can use the contact form on their website or call (302) 658-5404. They ask that residents of Southern New Castle County call (302) 378-7217 instead.
New Castle Cares Fund
The New Castle Cares Fund serves low income Municipal Services Commission customers in the New Castle area. This fund focuses on helping people with fixed incomes or special emergency needs.
This fund is managed by The Salvation Army‘s Delaware Command. Contact them at (302) 472-0750 for details.
Newark Area Welfare
The Newark Area Welfare Committee offers emergency financial assistance with utility bills. However, they only work with clients who are referred to them by the Hudson State Service Center. That means that if you need help, you will need to reach out to that service center before contacting the Newark Area Welfare Committee.
If you are a customer of Delaware Electric Cooperative and you live in Kent or Sussex County, then you may be able to get help through Operation Share. You can receive help from this fund once per year.
This fund is also administered by The Salvation Army in Wilmington. You can reach them at (302) 472-0750.
St. Vincent de Paul
Nationwide, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul is known to help with utility bills. It appears that the St. Vincent de Paul location in Wilmington also offers this service. This location has a primary service area that covers New Castle, Kent and Sussex Counties.
To request assistance, please use this form on their website.
West End Neighborhood House
The West End Neighborhood House can help you with a utility deposit, although it does not appear that they assist with past-due electric bills in Delaware at this time.
Their Security Deposit Loan Program can help you with the cost of a security deposit, first month’s rent, utility deposit and moving costs. They also offer a Re-Entry Program that offers rental assistance for individuals who are leaving incarceration and reintegrating into their local communities.
Utility Provider Assistance Programs
You may be able to get even more help from your local utility provider! We’ve been researching utility providers for over 10 years to find ways that low income customers can save money and get free stuff. Here’s what we’ve found in Delaware so far:
There are many resources available to help you pay for your electric bill in Delaware. These services include government programs, nonprofits and churches, as well as assistance programs from the utility providers themselves. In this article, we reviewed all of the helpful programs available to you and how you can apply for them.