CHESTER, England, June 21, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --
- Two Thirds of Brits Worried About How They Will Afford to Heat Their Homes
- Bill Payers can Save £382 a Year by Moving to Cheapest 'Fixed' Deal
Two thirds of energy customers (62 per cent) are worried about how they will afford their energy bills in the event of more price hikes, according to moneysupermarket.com.
Scottish Power recently announced increases to the cost of standard gas and electricity of 19 per cent and 10 per cent respectively, adding around £180 to customers' annual bills. In reaction to this price hike, a poll of 1157 moneysupermarket.com users found a third (32 per cent) of energy customers are worried they won't be able to afford to heat their homes this winter if the remaining five of the 'Big Six' energy giants are true to form and also announce increases to their prices. A further third (30 per cent) will have to cut back to afford their gas and electricity bills.
Nearly one in five (18 per cent) said they will change to a different tariff in order to save money on their bills. Indeed, apathy will cost consumers dearly; bill payers languishing on their supplier's standard tariff could save up to £382 a year by swapping to the current cheapest fixed deal - the Fix Saver v2 tariff from EDF Energy, at £1,009 a year.
Scott Byrom, utilities manager at moneysupermarket.com said: "With Scottish Power recently announcing a staggering increase to the cost of standard gas and electricity, it's only a matter of time before the other energy providers raise the cost of energy bills. As our research shows, many people will struggle to afford to heat their homes if the energy companies continue to push up the price of bills for cash strapped consumers. But, bill payers can fight back against the heat of rising energy bills by showing they are prepared to act and look for a better priced deal.
"The average saving by changing from a typical standard deal to the best priced fixed product on the market is £382. It's never too late to make a saving and I urge anyone who is paying over the odds for their gas and electricity to switch now. Shopping around for the best value energy product is vital, anyone worried about the cost of their bills needs to act quickly and move on to a fixed tariff to safeguard against future price rises.
"It is unlikely the best priced fixed products will be available for long so now really is the time to make the switch. The more of us who move on to a better deal, the higher the need for energy companies to compete for our business and hopefully this will need for more competitive prices for everyone."
Notes to Editors:
In a survey on our website customers were asked the question: "What will another round of energy price increases mean for you?" (1157 votes were registered).
31% answered "I'm worried I won't be able to afford to heat my house this winter."
30.4%answered "I will have to cut back to afford my gas & electricity bills."
17.9% answered "I'm going to switch to a different tariff as I can save money."
12.2% answered "I am aware of the energy I use and believe I can save cash by being more energy efficient."
7.6% answered "I don't think it will make much difference. My bills will rise but I can easily afford them."
Standard, fixed and online / best energy tariffs
NEW CONSUMPTION LEVEL
British Gas: average standard tariff (£1,096.75), average online/best tariff (£954.59 Web Saver 12), fixed tariff (£1,217.41 Fixed Price June 12).
EDF Energy: average standard tariff (£1,118.28), average online/best tariff (£940.49 Online S@ver 10), fixed tariff (£1,009.05 Fix Saver v2).
E.ON: average standard tariff (£1,122.83), average online/best tariff (£964.97 SaveOnline v7), fixed tariff (£1,126.05 Fixed Price v5).
npower: average standard tariff (£1,148.98), average online/best tariff (£973.28 Sign Online 22), fixed tariff (£1,013.80 Go Fix 6).
Scottish Power: average standard tariff (£1,391.21), average online/best tariff (£932.10 Direct October 12), fixed tariff (£1,217.37 Platinum Fixed Energy 2014)
Scottish & Southern: average standard tariff (£1,094.11), average online/best tariff (N/A), fixed tariff (N/A)
Average Standard Tariff: £1,162.03
Average Online/Best Tariff: £953.09
Sourced by http://www.moneysupermarket.com 09.06.2011
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