Cost of Living Hub
We’ve all seen the cost of fuel, food and other essentials go up this year. It might be making us anxious for the future or we may already be struggling with bills.
This hub helps find the support that’s right for you and your family in Moray. A warm welcome awaits in our facilities - find out more below.
A new tool has also been launched to help guide you through the first steps to access money advice in Moray if you’re worrying about money – visit the webpage here.
The Money Advice Moray service provides a range of advice and support and helps make sure you’re getting all the benefits and grants you’re entitled to, improve household budgeting, and tackle debts and unexpected bills. They also provide specialist support with disability benefit claims and appeals.
The Flexible Food Fund can help to ease the cost of food and fuel bills. Advisers offer free, confidential and non-judgemental advice. Visit the Money Advice Moray web page for more information.
Scottish Welfare fund can help those with low incomes in an urgent money crisis. Find out more and how to claim on the Scottish Welfare Fund web page.
Credit unions: A credit union is a profit sharing, democratically run financial co-operative which offers convenient savings and low interest loans to its members. Moray Council works alongside a number of local credit unions – more information can be found here.
A national support hub can be found via the Scottish Government here.
Social Security Scotland is where to you need to head for national benefits and payments support.
Business Gateway is running an online survey on the current ‘Cost of doing business’. The insight from this survey will give vital feedback from businesses and feed into the Scottish Government. This will help to develop a plan to support Scottish businesses through these very challenging times. Businesses can take part here.
A detailed guide has been uploaded to the Find Business Support Portal about advice and consultancy support available to businesses on ‘Reducing the cost of running your business’.
Business Energy Scotland - Retail energy savings
Help is also available to businesses in Moray from Business Gateway’s stakeholder partners Business Energy Scotland. From identifying new energy saving opportunities, to providing financial support and technical expertise, Business Energy Scotland can help businesses reduce their energy costs and grow a greener business. More information available here.
Business Gateway Moray continues to provide free and impartial advice and support to businesses during these challenging times for Moray businesses. One-to-one advice from professional business advisers is available to start up and established businesses based in Moray. For more information on the support available please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Did you know you could save £65 a year by switching your appliances off standby?
Not all energy saving has to be big switches like insulation, draught-proofing and renewables. You can make little switches like opting for LED energy saving lightbulbs or reducing your shower time.
The Energy Saving Trust has more tips like these to help you potentially save up to £564 a year.
If you’re struggling with energy bills there’s a range of support that could help, have a look at the Scottish Government’s options for your first steps.
Home Energy Scotland can help identify assistance for the bigger changes we might want to make to ensure our homes are more energy efficient in future.
Lots of us already try to keep our waste to a minimum for the many climate change related reasons we know and talk about. Reducing waste can also help save us money.
Food waste: simple habits can vastly reduce the amount of food waste we produce.
- Plan meals in advance and take a shopping list with you so you only buy what you need.
- Set a budget before you go and stick to it – using quick scan devices while shopping helps keep track of your budget as you go round the shop.
- Make sure you store food correctly to get the maximum freshness – check your fridge temperature too so it doesn’t spoil too quickly.
For more tips on reducing food waste check out Love Food Hate Waste.
Making clothes last: buying new clothes doesn’t need to be the first option. Caring for, repairing, upcycling and sustainably recycling clothes is good for our wallets and better for the environment too. Find out how to make the most of your clothes on Love Your Clothes.
All P1-P5 children are eligible for free school meals. There’s no need to complete any paperwork for this. Older children may also be eligible for free school meals based on parent/carer income.
A discretionary grant towards the costs of school clothing and footwear can be claimed from P1.
Details and eligibility criteria for free school meals and clothing grants are available here.
A warm welcome awaits in our facilities. Whether you’re looking for a quiet space to read, a social space for a blether or somewhere for a cosy chat with an advisor, we’ve got you covered.
Staff in our information hubs in libraries are able to offer advice to anyone looking for additional information on council services. A number of classes and free groups also take place in our libraries and community centres – keep an eye on our website and social media channels for more details: @MorayCouncil, @MorayLibraries and @MoraySportLeisure.
Moray Council as part of its stewardship of several Trust Funds operating within the Elgin, Forres, Keith, Dufftown, Lossiemouth and Cullen areas are seeking to provide small grants of up to £500 for interested local community groups from an agreed pot of funding totalling £2,100.
Those groups who wish to provide increased operating hours of community facilities offering a warm space to members of the public as part of our combined efforts to combat rising cost of living, should complete this form and return it using the contact details provided at the end of the application by the closing date of Monday the 6th March 2023.
There are a number of housing options available to residents in Moray, council housing may not always be the most suitable. Find out what might work for you here.
Dampness and condensation can cause problems to your property and your health. Use this checklist to keep your home warm, dry and healthy.
- Make sure you heat and ventilate your home.
- If you have an extractor fan in your kitchen, use it when you are cooking or washing. If you have one in the bathroom, use it when you have a bath or shower. If you don’t have an extractor fan, open a window to let the steam out.
- Air the house by opening the windows for a little while every day, this will also help keep the condensation down.
- Try not to dry clothes on radiators as the water from the clothes will circulate round your house instead.
- Try to keep the central heating on a low heat for longer, rather than having it on for a short time at a high heat.
If you’re struggling with your energy bills here are the first steps you should take to get help.
For more information on energy efficiency and insulation please visit our fuel poverty web page.
Moray Pathways can help point you in the right direction to find opportunities in education, training or employment and is a single point of contact for individuals, businesses and organisations.
Find out full details on the Moray Pathways website.
The Sport and Culture Hardship Fund supports children and young people under 18 years old to access funding for leisure and recreation opportunities outwith school settings. The fund also supports individuals between 18-25 years old to access a training/education course outwith school/further education that can support them into employment or develop key life skills.
You can check eligibility and apply for the fund here.
Trading Standards Scotland has reported an increase in sophisticated scam operations linked to cost of living concerns and assistance.
Scammers may attempt to exploit financial worries and targeting people online and via cold calls, emails and text messages in an attempt to obtain personal details and bank account information.
You don’t have to contact anyone to receive the cost of living payment – if you’ve had a message asking you to contact someone it’s likely to be a scam.
Ways to avoid cost of living scams;
- Make sure you only use information and links from trusted sites, like this one.
- Never give bank details or personal information over the phone to a cold caller unless you’re sure of their identity.
- Before taking part in competitions online or on social media check the organisation’s website to make sure it’s genuine.
- Do not click links on unsolicited texts or emails.
- If you receive an unexpected social media message offering prizes or deals, particularly if you don't remember entering a competition, contact the company’s customer services on a verifiable number to check whether it’s genuine.
See Trading Standards Scotland’s leaflet on known cost of living scams and how to avoid them.
Report any scams to Advice Direct Scotland on 0800 164 6000.
The information on this page does not constitute financial advice. Information is correct at the time of publication and will be updated as necessary. Where we link to other websites we’re not responsible for their content.