With the recent announcement that Ofgem, the UK energy regulator, will increase the energy price cap by £693 in April, a rise of 54%, never has the need to help domestic customers to reduce their energy consumption been so critical.
Around 18 million UK households on standard tariffs will see an average increase in their energy bills from £1,277 to £1,971 per year. Around 4.5 million prepayment customers will see an average increase of £708 – from £1,309 to £2,0171. With warnings that energy prices are predicted to rise again in October, it’s a worrying time for many customers whose finances are already squeezed to their limit.
The number of households suffering from “fuel stress” – those spending at least 10% of their family budgets on energy bills – is set to treble to 6.3m overnight when the new energy price cap comes in on 1 April2. According to a leading research group, Resolution Foundation, 9% of English households are currently experiencing fuel stress. That figure is expected to leap to 27% when the energy price cap rises to about £2,000 a year in April. That’s an increase of more than 50%.
In the USA, fuel costs have risen to multi-year highs. Consumers continue to face the biggest jump in their energy bills in more than a decade, with the price of electricity in November 2021 rising 6.5% from the same month a year ago.3