Couple receiving home bills


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Inflation has inflicted pain across many sectors of the nation's economy but none perhaps more so than energy, where forecasts call for a 28% rise in the cost to heat homes this winter, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. To relieve some of the stress caused by higher costs, the Biden administration is providing $13.5 billion aimed at helping households to pay their energy bills.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is issuing $4.5 billion through the Home Energy Assistance Program, which helps low-income families to afford winter heating costs, including assistance with paying bills and making home upgrades and repairs to lower both heating and cooling costs. The program helped more than 5.3 million households with heating, cooling, and weatherization upgrades in the past year.

Gallery: How Much Utilities Cost the Average Household in Your State

An additional $9 billion is going to the U.S. Department of Energy to help an estimated 1.6 billion households upgrade their homes and lower energy bills through the Inflation Reduction Act. The initiative comes as the National Energy Assistance Directors Association — which represents the state LIHEAP directors — revealed that about 1 in 6 households in the U.S. are already struggling to afford their energy bills. U.S. families are more than $16 billion behind on utility bills, according to NEADA.

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