Washington Gas is dedicated to supporting our customers who are experiencing financial challenges in paying their bills. We recently introduced Washington Gas Cares, a program designed to connect customers with energy assistance programs and a variety of flexible payment plans. We will be there to help our customers every step of the way to support them and meet their essential energy needs. By bringing our solutions together in a single location — www.washingtongascares.com — we are providing convenient access to all payment and energy assistance offerings.

In addition, our Washington Gas Cares team has been busy reaching out to customers proactively to help them find an option that makes the most sense depending on their circumstances. This proactive outreach is a key component of Washington Gas Cares. Our team is hard at work contacting customers by phone, automated messaging or email communication outreach to provide personal guidance and a better understanding of the status of a bill that is past due and how best to get it back on track. We are here to help guide you through multiple assistance options, simply check out www.washingtongascares.com.

“Washington Gas is dedicated to the communities, families, neighbors and individuals we serve. It’s part of who we are and what the Washington Gas Cares initiative is all about ─ to lend a helping hand when customers can use it the most,” said Blue Jenkins. “Our team stands ready to support customers facing difficult decisions when paying their bills — we can identify the right energy assistance option and payment plan that fits a customer’s budget and schedule during a time of need. Customers can also contact us directly. We are here to help.”

Get Help

Customers can apply for payment assistance through several existing programs across Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia.

Customers can make a payment or choose among many payment arrangement plans using our self-service online option.

Give Help

Customers can aid those struggling to pay their bill through an act of kindness. For example, through our Gift of Warmth program, customers can help pay a gas bill for their friend, neighbor or fellow customers.

Customers can also donate to the Washington Area Fuel Fund. More than 35 years ago, Washington Gas and The Salvation Army created the Washington Area Fuel Fund (WAFF) to help families in need pay their heating bills.

Washington Gas offers a number of payment plans to help you manage your account:

Automated Payment Plan — Customers can pay their bill automatically every month through the Automated Payment Plan. Washington Gas will continue to bill each month, but, on the payment due date, the bill amount will be automatically deducted from the customer’s checking account which will avoid the need for check writing, postage and/or waiting in line. If a customer is enrolled in Washington Gas’ eBill program, an electronic notification will be sent every month to the customer’s registered email address with a link to view the electronic bill. However, if a customer prefers to receive a paper bill each month, customers can still pay their gas bill automatically through the Automated Payment Plan (APPL).

Deferred Payment Plan — all eligible customers who cannot pay the “past due bill amount” as well as the “current charges” on their gas bill can enter into a deferment/pay agreement/ or consent order at the request of the customer.

Budget Plan — spreads the cost of winter heating over the entire year. We calculate your average monthly payment based on historical natural gas usage, adjusted for normal weather and projected gas costs. Periodically, we review your account to confirm that our monthly estimate is on target.

Prepare for Winter — Money and Energy Savings

As seasons change, customers may notice a fluctuation in their bill amounts because more energy from natural gas is being used to heat their homes. It is recommended that customers take simple steps (such as caulking, weather-stripping and insulating any openings where air may infiltrate) to help manage their home energy costs and stay safe, warm and energy-smart when temperatures begin to drop. The typical low-income home saves an average of 25 percent on energy consumption and saves an average of more than $275 annually in heating and cooling costs after weatherization services.

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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