The Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) helps low-income homeowners and renters pay bills for heating fuel, equipment and repairs. For more information about HEAP call 800-692-0557. HEAP season starts every year in mid to late November.
HEAP is a federally funded program that assists eligible households with grants to pay regular and emergency energy heating costs. The benefit does not have to be paid back. As the Local Department of Social Services (LDSS), HRA administers the program in New York City.
HEAP eligibility is determined by whether the household income is below the current New York State income guidelines that correspond to the household size and the household energy costs. HEAP may be able to offer a benefit even if heat and utilities are included in the rent or the applicant lives in subsidized housing and pays directly for heating costs.
The Heat Line program functions as the homebound unit for HEAP. Requests and referrals for a home visit can be made by contacting Heat Line at 212-331-3150. You may also contact Heat Line if you are having trouble paying your bills. (For additional information read about UAP)
In addition to HEAP services, the Heat Line staff verifies whether a customer will have a medical hardship in the event a public utility disconnects services in a building. Utility disconnection often occurs as a result of a landlord not paying for the utilities, and can affect the hallway lights, elevators or the heating system. If there is someone living in the building with a medical hardship, the utility companies must contact the Heat Line to prevent the disconnection. Heat Line will verify the hardship within 30 days.
Utility Assistance Program (UAP)
The Utility Assistance Program (UAP) assists families or individuals who are elderly, blind, disabled, mentally impaired or those residing in a neglected or hazardous environment who require financial assistance for their energy bills.
UAP, a state-mandated program, is the liaison between utility companies and eligible families or individuals. UAP receives referrals from utility companies on behalf of customers faced with termination of services due to nonpayment, theft of service, or meter tampering. The utility companies are required to notify their Local Department of Social Services (LDSS) prior to shutoff. The notification must be made 15 days prior to disconnection if the utility company is aware that families or individuals meet one of the following criteria: elderly, blind or disabled. The same notification must be made if the utility company suspects impairment, the presence of neglect, or another hazardous situation.
UAP staff will also offer customers financial assistance for their energy bills as well as assistance in obtaining extensions from the utility companies.
Do not contact this program directly because all clients are referred by the utility companies. If you are having trouble paying your utilities, please contact the Heat Line.
Energy Assistance in New York City is administered by the Office of Emergency Intervention Services, which responds to citywide emergencies such as hurricanes and snow storms, administers home energy assistance benefits and emergency food assistance, and conducts nutritional outreach for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.