Faced With An Unaffordable Heating Bill? 3 Options To Consider

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When the household budget is already strained, an unexpected heating repair bill can be the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back. Luckily, homeowners who find themselves in this situation may be able to use one of these creative solutions to help ensure their home has a reliable source of heat. 

Look for heating assistance grants and financial help

Households that meet certain income requirements may be able to get assistance with heating costs, including necessary repairs, through the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). Managed by the United States Department of Health and Human Services, the LIHEAP program may automatically cover families who are already participating in some other types of benefit programs, including those who receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) benefits, as well as some other types. 

Grants and financial help for emergency heating repairs may also be available through churches and charitable organizations in the city or town in which your home is located. 

Refinance the home to cover the repair costs

If the heating repair issues are expected to be costly or require expensive replacement of one or more major components, refinancing the home or taking out a home equity loan may be necessary. Homeowners who want to explore this option should talk with their heating repair contractor and obtain a detailed bid for the repairs, including the expected costs of all parts and labor and the importance of making the repairs before the start of the coming heating season. Presenting this information to the loan officer during the application process can help to speed the process for approval. 

Explore options that may be available through the heating repair contractor

Depending on the type of heating repair needed, it may be possible to continue to use the heating system temporarily. To determine if this is possible for your situation, homeowners should consider having a frank discussion with their heating repair contractor about their situation to see if they can safely postpone needed repairs can continue to use a marginal heating system for a short period of time. 

The heating repair contractor may also be able to help homeowners by: 

  • using refurbished parts or components to complete the repairs 
  • providing information about any available payment plans their company may offer so that repair costs can be spread over several months 
  • offering information for safely using a temporary supplemental heat source until funds become available for the needed repairs

The heating repair contractor may also be able to direct the homeowner to any special financing or discount offers available through the manufacturer of their heating equipment. For more information, reach out to companies like Signature Heating & Air LLC.

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