The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) is a fuel assistance program. Operating between November 1 and April 30, LIHEAP provides eligible households with help in paying winter heating bills. The program pays benefits of fixed amounts based on household income and size. This program provides assistance through a fixed benefit amount for the cost of the primary source of heat which includes but is not limited to: oil, electricity, natural gas, propane, kerosene, wood, and coal.

Local administering agencies determine household eligibility based on annual income and the number of members in the household. The agency then will make payments towards the heating bills to the primary heat source vendor. Special provisions are made for those households whose heat is included in their rent and those living in subsidized housing. Homeowners and renters are both eligible.

A person who participates or has household members who participate in certain other benefit programs, such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Supplemental Security Income (SSI), or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) may be automatically eligible.

Eligibility is based on household size and the gross annual income of every household member, 18 years of age or older. Household income cannot exceed 60% of estimated State Median Income (see chart below, up to date as of February 2023).

Household Size Maximum Income Level (Per Year)
1 $42,411
2 $55,461
3 $68,511
4 $81,561
5 $94,610
6 $107,660
7 $110,107
8 $112,554
Each additional 1 +$2,447
Apply for LIHEAP

First-time applicants must apply in person at the fuel assistance agency in their area. Households must apply each year; applications are mailed to households after the first year. Households can apply from November 1st to April 30th of the program year. Applicants who are denied assistance have the right to appeal through the local fuel assistance agency.

Action, Inc.
47 Washington Street
Gloucester, MA 01930
(978) 281-3900