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Our lobby is open – appointments now available.  More info at MyTPU.org/COVID19.

Payment Assistance

Whether you are facing a short-term financial issue or are on a limited or fixed income, we understand paying your bills can be challenging at times. To help make your bills more manageable, and to prevent service interruptions, we offer a variety of payment options and assistance programs.

NEW - Payment Assistance for Renters in Pierce County Impacted by COVID-19

Pierce County Human Services and the City of Tacoma have received funding for rental and utility assistance for tenants impacted by COVID-19 and who are behind on rent. These funds apply to both past due rent and past due utilities, and will be distributed to eligible applicants by Pierce County on a first-come, first-served basis.

TPU residential customers may qualify if they are renters, can show evidence of financial hardship directly or indirectly due to the COVID-19 outbreak, and meet household income and unemployment requirements.

TPU customers with past due balances are encouraged to apply for these funds to help bring their accounts up to date before disconnects resume.

Pierce County residents who receive utility service from providers other than TPU are also eligible for these funds.

To be eligible for these funds, a TPU customer must be:

  • A residential customer who rents
  • Impacted by COVID-19
  • Have past due rent or utility bills
  • Live in Pierce County, including the City of Tacoma
  • Have an outstanding balance with TPU
  • Have a household income that meets these federal eligibility requirements (80% AMI):
    • Household of one – $48,450 income limit
    • Household of two – $55,400 income limit
    • Household of three – $62,300 income limit
    • Household of four – $69,200 income limit
    • Household of five – $74,750 income limit
    • Household of six – $80,300 income limit
    • Household of seven – $85,850 income limit
    • Household of eight – $91,350 income limit

To apply, TPU customers will need to provide Pierce County with:

  • Income verification for all household members (household W-2, past pay stubs, etc.)
  • Proof of COVID-19 impact (loss of wages, unexpected increase in household costs, etc.)
  • Landlord contact information and statement with past due balance

To apply online, check the status of your application, or read application instructions and FAQs, visit www.PierceCountyWA.gov/housinghelp

If you do not have internet access, you can apply by calling 2-1-1.

You can view payment assistance programs offered by TPU on the sections below.

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Download information in Tagalog

TPU and Environmental Services Residential Utility Assistance Programs

TPU and Environmental Services offer two programs to help our limited-income customers: the Discount Rate Program and the Bill Credit Assistance Plan. See below for details.

Discount Rate Program

This program gives you a 35% discount on electricity, drinking water, solid waste, recycling and surface water if the following apply to you:

  • Have a current TPU account in your name.
  • You are 62 years or older or and adult currently qualifying receiving disability income.
  • You are a single occupant, head of household or spouse of the head of household.
  • Your current home is your primary residence where you live full-time.
  • You have residential, single-metered service (meter cannot be shared with another unit or structure).
  • Your household meets the income guidelines shown in the list below:

Household Size: 1
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $2,385

Household Size: 2
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $2,762

Household Size: 3
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $3,068

Household Size: 4
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $3,405

Household Size: 5
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $3,679

Household Size: 6
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $3,953


Bill Credit Assistance Plan

If your household is eligible for this program, you can receive a utility credit up to $672 annually (amount is based on the number of utility services billed directly through Tacoma Public Utilities). Each time your utility bill is paid in full and on time, a credit is automatically applied to your utility account. To qualify, you must:

  • Have a current TPU account in your name.
  • Live in the dwelling full-time as your primary residence.
  • Have residential, single-metered service (meter cannot be shared with another unit or structure).
  • Your household meets the income guidelines* shown in the list below:

Household Size: 1
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $3,180

Household Size: 2
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $3,635

Household Size: 3
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $4,090

Household Size: 4
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $4,540

Household Size: 5
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $4,905

Household Size: 6
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $5,270

How to Apply

Apply Online

To apply for the Discount Rate Program or the Bill Credit Assistance Plan (BCAP), start by completing the Residential Utility Assistance Application. Then submit the application along with information about all members of your household. This includes anyone who lives in your home and uses electricity, water and other utilities whether they are related to you or not.

  1. Click here to start the online application
    OR
  2. Download, complete and mail us the printable application with supporting documents to:

Tacoma Public Utilities
Customer Solutions Office
3628 South 35th Street
Tacoma, WA 98409

Please submit copies of the following with your application:

  • Picture ID for each household member 18 years of age and older.
  • For children under 18 years of age you may use a DSHS document that shows household members by name or a certified birth certificate, school ID, or medical card.
  • Income information for the past three months for each member of your household over the age of 18. Acceptable income documents include:
    • Paycheck stubs
    • Child support invoices
    • SSI/SSDI award letter
    • Retirement pension or IRA statements
    • Interest, dividends or annuities statements
    • DSHS documents such as Lifeline/GAU or TANF
    • State Labor and Industry Veterans Affairs statements
    • Unemployment compensation documents
    • Rental property income documents
    • Self-employment income verification
  • If any members of your household are older than 18 and listed as having zero or undeclared income, they can complete a Declaration of Zero or Unreported Income or write a brief letter explaining how they currently meet their basic living needs such as food and shelter.
  • If you are disabled, please provide your most recent SSI or Social Security “Benefit Award” letter to show the amount you are receiving. If you do not have a copy of your current letter, contact the Social Security Administration one of the following ways:

Depending on your situation, you may also be required to submit additional documents including:

*Incomes are based on maximum household income before tax.

Federal Energy Assistance Program

The U.S. federal government offers seasonal assistance through its Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). It is designed to help qualifying, low-income households meet their immediate home energy needs. This assistance does not require a delinquent balance or shut-off notice.

For more information about LIHEAP and other programs, contact the following:

To qualify for this program, you must be a resident of the state of Washington, and your household must pay for home heating costs either directly or as part of your rent.

To qualify for this benefit, you must meet the following requirement:

Household Size: 1
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $1,301

Household Size: 2
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $1,762

Household Size: 3
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $2,222

Household Size: 4
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $2,682

Household Size: 5
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $3,143

Household Size: 6
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $3,603

Household Size: 7

Maximum Monthly Household Income: $4,064

Winter Protection Plan

To prevent service disconnection during winter months, you can enroll in our Winter Protection Plan if your income is at or below the following levels:

Household Size: 1
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $1,301

Household Size: 2
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $1,762

Household Size: 3
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $2,222

Household Size: 4
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $2,682

Household Size: 5
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $3,143

Household Size: 6
Maximum Monthly Household Income: $3,603

Household Size: 7

Maximum Monthly Household Income: $4,064


Program Details:

  • Effective dates are November 15 through March 15.
  • To qualify, you are required to pay a minimum of 7% of your monthly income plus 1/12 of any unpaid charges on your electric bill.
  • On March 15, when the program ends, you must make arrangements to pay all accumulated charges, including current charges, before October 15.
  • You agree to pay all charges owed, even if you move.
  • The Winter Protection Plan only applies to heating. Water, wastewater, surface water and solid waste charges are not covered under this protection plan.

To apply, please do the following:

1. Contact Making a Difference in Community or Pierce County Human Services to:

  • Request a certification of your household income for the Winter Protection Plan (see chart above).
  • Apply for home heating assistance.
  • Sign up for low-income weatherization assistance if it applies to your home.

2. Bring certification information to TPU’s Customer Solutions Office at 3628 S. 35th St. and ask to enroll in the Winter Protection Plan. Office hours are Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Payment Options and Resources

Payment Arrangements

If you are unable to pay your bill by the due date, log on to MyAccount or call our 24-hour automated customer service line at 253-502-8608 as soon as possible to make payment arrangements. Calling early gives you greater flexibility and helps prevent any disruption in your service.

Budget Billing

You may enroll in Budget Billing if you have had residential service for at least 12 months. This service allows you to pay the same predictable amount for your utilities each month, which can help you create a consistent budget for your utility bills. Under this system, your monthly payments are calculated as follows:

  • We calculate your entire electricity bill for the past 12 months, divide by 12, and round to the nearest whole dollar.
  • We calculate your total water bill for the past 12 months, divide by 12, and round to the nearest whole dollar.
  • We calculate a fixed monthly charge for Solid Waste, Surface Water and Wastewater utility services, if applicable.

Then, every 12 months we will recalculate your monthly charge for the next 12 months based on the previous year’s data. All debits or credits from the previous budget billing term are divided by 12 and applied to next year’s budget amount.

You can enroll in Budget Billing online through MyAccount by doing the following:

  • Select the “Payment options” tab from the menu
  • Select “Budget Billing Plan”
  • Select from the enrollment options and follow the prompts based on your selection
  • Read and accept the terms of agreement for the enrollment
  • Select the “Submit” button

If you have a past due balance you can still enroll in Budget Billing. We will simply build the balance into your monthly payments.

More information about Budget Billing

MyAccount

MyAccount allows you to fully manage your utility account online. You can use it to pay your bill online using a credit or debit card with the Visa, MasterCard or Discover logo, or by transferring money directly from your checking or savings account. You can also track your payments, view your bill and energy usage history, create a Budget Billing plan, enroll in paperless billing and access many other payment and budgeting options. Register or log on to MyAccount.

AutoPay

AutoPay is a convenient payment option that allows you to automatically pay your utilities on a set schedule using a credit or debit card or a bank account. To enroll in AutoPay, log on to MyAccount, select the “Payment tab”, then select the “AutoPay” button and follow the instructions.

Energy Efficiency Rebate Programs

A variety of rebate programs, loans and income-eligible grants are available to help offset the upfront costs of making your home or business more energy efficient. Along with making your home more comfortable, these improvements can lower your utility bills for years to come. Learn about all the rebate programs available to you.

Energy Efficiency Tools and Resources

Making your home or business more energy efficient helps reduce your utility bills. Start saving energy and money with the following resources:

Utility Bill Payment Assistance Program Brochures

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