Winter is coming and it will be a hard one for many households. Families will reportedly have less financial strength to manage the high energy bills.
Several charity organizations said energy debts went up this year. They also noted that many households are making unwise choices to keep energy bills down. This includes cooking on barbecue grills to cut down on gas consumption. This can become deadly in certain situations.
The average domestic energy bill is now expected to go down in October. It won’t make a difference since the amount remains steep by historical standards.
Part of the problem is the price cap set by energy regulator Ofgem. The cap impacts 29 million households in the UK. Families using the usual amount of electricity and gas will be paying £2,074. It will go down to £1,923 between October and December.
Gas prices are set to drop to 6.89p in the last three months of the year. The price of electricity is now estimated to fall to 27.35p per kWh. It’s quite a drop from the current 30.1p per kWh.
This means domestic power rates will be lower than the £2,500 a year. It was what citizens paid last year when the government limited further increases. Gas prices went up after Russia moved to invade Ukraine.
It’s different this year. UK households enjoyed a government-sponsored £400 discount last year. It came in six installments. But this generosity is over and done. Costs today are also higher than winter 2021 prices. The annual energy bill for that time was around £1,277.
Charities gave several warnings to the Energy and Net Zero Select Committee. They said vulnerable citizens would face many challenges. They also noted that winter this year would be worse. The snowball effect of the rising cost of living means life is harder now.
The End Fuel Poverty Coalition said the signs show citizens will be struggling more. People will also be experiencing these hard times in damp and cold homes. The National Energy Action said the government must come up with another package. They need to do this, regardless regardless if they want to or not.
Several of the UK’s biggest suppliers said they were helping their customers cope. They offer debt relief and credit on meters. They’re calling on the government to do something similar.
Households can also embrace some energy-saving measures to save money. One suggestion was to get a water-efficient shower head. Consumers can get them for free from their water company. Showering instead of a bath is also a good way to save money.
It’s also a good idea to consider insulation. Other practical suggestions include walking instead of diving. It’s also more affordable to hang out the washing. Most people don’t use a tumble dryer anyway.