Energy Regulator, Ofgem, confirmed the largest ever increase in the energy price cap this week, causing another significant hike in consumers’ energy bills. Here’s answers to the questions you’ve been asking:
How much is the increase?
The price cap on standard and default tariffs has increased from £1,971 per annum for a typical user paying by direct debit to £3,549 per year.
Ofgem has also announced a £1,591/year increase to the cap for more than four million households on prepay tariffs – to £3,608/year for a typical household.
How much will my bill go up by?
Typically, the latest rise in the price cap will cause a £1,578 per annum increase in energy bills.
Should I switch supplier?
The answer at the moment is no, as there are still no cheap deals available for switchers, meaning switching will not reduce your bill.
I can’t pay my bill, what can I do?
The first thing to do is speak to your supplier and explain your financial situation. Ofgem has directed all suppliers to offer assistance where possible, typically this could include:
- an affordable debt repayment plan;
- payment break;
- payment reduction; or
- more time to pay.
If you are on a pre-payment meter you could ask your supplier for emergency credit; most suppliers will give you at least £5 credit for your meter. If you are vulnerable (in terms of your age or medical condition) you can speak to your supplier about obtaining additional support credit.
Many of the energy suppliers also have hardship funds which can be accessed by those struggling the most financially.
The important thing to remember is don’t struggle in silence as there is support available.