LiveWest appoints energy advice officer

South West housing association LiveWest has appointed a new energy advice officer as part of its drive to support customers to manage their energy costs.
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South West housing association LiveWest has appointed a new energy advice officer as part of its drive to support customers to manage their energy costs.

As a social business, LiveWest, the South West’s largest housing association has put in place a series of resources to support the enormous challenges facing customers this winter recognising that increasing living costs and reduced incomes are going to have a huge impact on customers’ ability to heat their homes and put food on the table.

Working within the tenancy sustainment team and closely with the grants team at LiveWest, energy expert Lucy Betts will head up the area. With additional strains being put on households the new role will assist customers, particularly those in or at risk of falling into fuel poverty, with energy efficiency advice and support to help reduce utility bills and find solutions to their energy issues both face to face and virtually.

Lucy Betts, LiveWest’s Energy Advice Officer said: “I will build on the work that LiveWest has been doing to help customers to manage their money. We will focus on maximising income, energy awareness and education on grants and the schemes available to vulnerable households. We will alleviate some of the financial pressure on fuel poor customers, assisting  them to gain control of bills and keep their homes warm.”

She added: “The main challenge is that the focus of energy advice is changing with the energy market crisis and resulting increase in the price cap and the 2021 Fuel Poverty Strategy (Sustainable Warmth). With challenges on household budgets we will be prioritising practical solutions which can help to solve the fuel poverty issues of our tenants and build resilience.”

In addition to LiveWest’s own grant funding for customers LiveWest have donated £5,000 to The Housing Associations Charitable Trust (HACT) Energy Hardship Fund which sets out to support those most in need.

Gia Hancock tenancy sustainment manager at LiveWest said: “The addition of an energy savings expert in our team is invaluable and a role which will be hugely challenging and busy. As a company we believe in a home for everyone and in addition to our own tenancy sustainment activities, are proud to support the Energy Hardship Fund which will help struggling families through the coming winter months and beyond.”

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