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Archived News Article: Information may be out of date
March 17, 2021

Staying Warm this Winter with Government Assistance

Staying Warm this Winter with Government Assistance
Staying Warm this Winter with Government Assistance

Staying warm through cold weather is an essential need that may cause financial stress for families. However, there are government assistance programs designed to help. These programs can help you keep the heat on for you and your family while also managing the cost. One program that may help is the Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP).

What is the Weatherization Assistance Program?

The Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) is designed to reduce energy bills by making homes more energy efficient and enhancing the self-sufficiency of low-income families. WAP, managed by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), is available in every state. Guidelines may vary slightly from state to state. Weatherization assistance may include installing insulation, replacing or repairing windows and doors, sealing air leaks, patching small areas of the roof, under skirting on your house or deck, and more.

Who is Eligible for the Weatherization Assistance Program?

As many as 20 to 30 million U.S. families are eligible for weatherization services nationwide. Services are provided by the states, and each state has slightly different criteria. All energy services are handled by local weatherization agencies.

Eligibility for the program varies by state. You are automatically eligible if you are at or below 200% of the Federal Income Poverty Guidelines. Moreover, you are also automatically eligible if you receive Supplemental Security Income or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families. You may also be eligible in your state if you are:

  • Over 60 years of age
  • A family with one or more members with a disability
  • A family with children 

For more information on eligibility or to start your application, go to, where you can find the How to Apply for Weatherization page.

How is the Weatherization Assistance Program affected by the coronavirus pandemic?

Like many other government programs, WAP has been affected directly by the coronavirus pandemic. The Department of Energy has published a WAP Memorandum to answer questions about COVID-19’s impact on the Weatherization Assistance Program.

It is important for grantees to note that if access to your home for weatherization has been disrupted due to the coronavirus pandemic, the DOE will allow partial payments for allowable activities until a final inspection can be completed.

DOE is aware of the risk of exposure to coronavirus for both workers and clients. DOE has encouraged grantees to pause weatherization work, especially in areas significantly impacted by the coronavirus, until it is safer for workers and citizens. can help connect you to the right program or information for you. Here are a few great starting points:

  • Take our Benefit Finder questionnaire to find benefits you may be eligible to receive. Answer questions in our confidential screening tool to find a list of benefits you may be eligible for and find the next steps for applying. To narrow this search, select ‘Housing and Public Utilities’ at the end of the first page.
  • Browse other benefits in the Housing and Public Utilities category. Filter by state or subcategory to see benefits specific to your needs.
  • Read our article on “Winter Weatherization Prep" to prepare your home for winter.
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