Biggest rise in home energy bills in living memory takes effect Business News

The biggest rise in household energy bills in living memory has come into force as charities warn that 2.5million more households are on the verge of falling into ‘fuel stress’ and venues Web providers still not responding to customers.

As a 54% rise in Ofgem’s price cap hits bills, the Resolution Foundation think tank said the number of English households under energy stress – those spending at least 10% of their total budget in energy bills – expected to double overnight from 2.5 to five million.

Resolution Foundation senior economist Jonathan Marshall said: “The current energy price cap hike will see the number of energy-stressed households double to five million.

“A further rise in energy bills this fall accentuates the need for more immediate support, as well as a clear, long-term strategy to improve home insulation, increase renewable and nuclear electricity production and reform energy markets so that family energy bills are less dependent on global gas prices.

Citizens Advice said around five million people would not be able to pay their energy bills from April, even taking into account the support the government has already announced.

He warned that number would almost triple to one in four people in the UK – more than 14 million – if the price cap was raised again in October based on current forecasts.

Concerns about the pressures households face came as energy companies continued to fight to allow customers to submit up-to-date meter readings to avoid paying the higher tariff on energy used before the 1st April.

Customers reported problems connecting to supplier websites including British Gas, EDF, E.On, SSE, So Energy and Octopus Energy from Thursday morning.

Energy price cap hike will be potentially ruinous for millions of people across the country

Dame Clare Moriarty, Managing Director of Citizens Advice

Energy UK, the industry trade body, urged people not to worry if they were unable to submit a meter reading by Friday.

He said: “Most providers offer alternative options such as submit at a later date and different methods of sending meter readings such as text, social media and email.

“It demonstrates the scale of the problem and how worried people are about high prices, which is why we have called on the government to step in to provide further support to consumers.”

Citizens Advice chief executive Dame Clare Moriarty said: “The energy price cap hike will be potentially ruinous for millions of people across the country.

“The support announced so far by the government is simply not enough for those who will be hardest hit. With the long-awaited price increases, many more people will be faced with the kind of heartbreaking choices that our frontline advisors already see too often.

The energy price cap for those who pay by default and pay by direct debit increases by £693 from £1,277 to £1,971 from April 1.

Prepaid customers will see a bigger jump, with their price cap increasing by £708, from £1,309 to £2,017.

The regulator was forced to raise the cap on energy prices to a record £1,971 for a typical household as gas prices soared to all-time highs.

The National Energy Action (NEA) charity has warned that the cost of heating an average home has now doubled in 18 months, leaving 6.5million households unable to live in a warm, safe home across the UK United.

A spokeswoman for Ofgem said: “We know this increase will be extremely worrying for many people.

“The energy market has faced a huge challenge due to the unprecedented rise in global gas prices, a unique event in 30 years, and Ofgem’s role as energy regulator is ensure that, under the price cap, energy companies can only charge a fair price based on the real cost of supplying electricity and gas.

“Ofgem is working to stabilize the market and, in the longer term, to diversify our energy sources, which will help protect customers against similar price shocks in the future.”

(PA graphics)

(PA graphics)

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has previously pledged to ‘mitigate’ price rises, promising Britain’s 28million households will get an initial £200 rebate on their energy bills from October.

The government will provide the money for this, but they want the money back, so they will raise bills by £40 a year over the next five years from 2023 to get it back.

Goldman Sachs has previously warned that gas market prices are likely to remain at twice their usual levels through 2025.

Rising energy prices aren’t the only way households are feeling the pinch, with state pandemic tax hikes and cuts supporting rising costs for businesses and ultimately account, resulting in higher prices for customers.

The cost of buying a meal in a pub, a soft drink or a hotel stay could become more expensive from this month as VAT levels in the hotels are up 20%, while the National Insurance tax hike will come into effect on April 6.

Fuel prices have also hit record highs in recent weeks…

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This notice was published: 2022-03-31 23:53:06

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