Residents affected by fracking could be paid a proportion of the proceeds of shale gas projects, the government has suggested.
A shale wealth fund was unveiled in 2014 to set aside up to 10% of the tax proceeds from fracking to benefit communities in the UK hosting wells.
The PM is now considering paying the money directly to individual households instead of councils and local trusts.
The plan is one option due to be outlined in a consultation on Monday.
It is expected the new fund could deliver as much as £10m to each community that has wells sited.
BBC business correspondent Theo Leggett said the government had not placed a figure on the amount potentially available to individual households, but said it was understood to be up to £10,000 each.
The shale wealth fund was established by ex-chancellor George Osborne to allow a percentage of the proceeds from fracking to be given to councils or community trusts to spend.
However, speaking ahead of the launch of a consultation on the fund, Theresa May said she wanted to make sure that individuals benefitted personally from the government’s economic decisions.
She said the government wanted to help “ordinary families for whom life is harder than many people in politics realise”.
“This announcement is an example of putting those principles into action,” the prime minister added.
“It’s about making sure people personally benefit from economic decisions that are taken – not just councils – and putting them back in control over their lives.”
Mrs May said the government would look to apply the same approach to other projects in the future.