CenterPoint Energy

Energy Assistance Programs

Having trouble paying your bill? Here are three energy assistance programs available to our customers:

Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)

LIHEAP helps pay home heating costs. Households with the lowest incomes and highest energy costs receive the greatest benefit.

  • Households who are at or below 50 percent of the state median income are eligible.
  • Size of grant is based on household size, income, fuel type and energy usage.
  • Households with the lowest income and highest fuel costs receive the highest grants.
  • Program is federally funded through the U.S. Department of Human Services and administered by the state Department of Commerce.
  • Funds are available for renters and homeowners.

Program benefits

  • Provides direct payment to the energy supplier.
  • Educates consumers about how to use home heating energy efficiently and safely.
  • Advocates with energy suppliers and human service providers on behalf of consumers.
  • Offers crisis help for utility disconnections and necessary fuel deliveries.
  • Provides emergency heating system repair or replacement.


How to apply

For information on how to apply, click here.

Eligibility guidelines

Maximum eligible income*

 For program dates October 1, 2013 to September 30, 2014.

To determine eligibility, the Minnesota Energy Assistance Program uses the past three months of household income prior to signing the application and/or last year's federal tax forms for self-employment income.

  Household size  Annual  Three-month 
 1  $22,694  $5,673
 2  $29,677  $7,419
 3  $36,659  $9,164
 4  $43,642  $10,910
 5 $50,625 $12,656
 6  $57,607 $14,401
 7   $58,917   $14,729
 8 $60,226 $15,056
 9 $61,535  $15,383
 10 $62,844 $15,711
 11 $64,154  $16,038
 12  $65,463 $16,365
 13 $66,772  $16,693
 14* $70,125  $17,531
 15*  $74,547  $18,636
 16* $78,969  $19,742
 17*  $83,391  $20,847
 18* $87,813  $21,953
 19* $92,235 $23,058
 20*  $96,657 $24,164

*Based on 50% of State Median Income or 110% of Federal Poverty Guidelines, whichever is greater.

For each additional household member add $4,356 to annual income and $1,089 to 3-month income.

Other helpful emergency assistance links

Learn how you might also benefit from our Low Income Weatherization Program. 
County emergency assistance

Minnesota county governments offer assistance programs to help residents in crisis. Unlike the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, these programs are not necessarily tied to income. For instance, Hennepin County provides financial assistance to residents experiencing an emergency, such as loss of housing or inability to pay utility bills, through three programs. People eligible for these programs are limited to a one-time usage in a 12-month period:

  1. Hennepin County Emergency Assistance Program (HCEAP) was created by Hennepin County in 2003. HCEAP is funded with a combination of state and federal dollars through the Minnesota Family Investment Program Consolidated Fund.
  2. Emergency General Assistance is state-funded and helps individuals, married couples or families who are in crisis and not eligible for HCEAP.
  3. Emergency Minnesota Supplemental Aid (EMSA) meets the emergency needs of people enrolled in Minnesota Supplemental Aid, which provides a monthly cash supplement to people who are blind, disabled, elderly or who receive federal Social Security Income benefits.

Click here to read the Hennepin County fact sheet, which further explains these programs.

Contact your county government to learn more about emergency assistance programs in your county.

The Salvation Army HeatShare Program

Founded by CenterPoint Energy in 1982 and administered by the Salvation Army, HeatShare provides emergency energy assistance to families in crisis. Learn more about this program.

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