You will have heard lots recently about high energy prices in the news and how we’re all likely to face rises in our household energy bills.
So, why is this happening and where can you find support?
In early 2020 when the COVID-19 global pandemic and lockdowns hit the price of wholesale energy was at an all-time low. When the world started to reopen again, there was a big increase in demand for gas. This together with a combination of pressures on supplies means that gas prices have rocketed. It also resulted in several smaller energy suppliers going bust.
What does this mean for you?
Most homes in the UK use gas for heating and hot water. So, the increase in the wholesale price of gas means you’re likely to see your energy bills rise. OFGEM, the UK energy regulator sets the maximum price per kilowatt-hour (kWh) or unit of electricity and gas, that a supplier can charge a customer on a standard tariff. It’s called a ‘energy price cap’ and is reviewed twice a year. A recent review led to a new higher price cap being introduced on 1 October 2021.
It’s estimated that this will impact around 15 million UK households including those on a ‘standard variable’ tariff and on a pre-payment meter. If you are on a ‘fixed’ tariff, you won’t be affected YET but when the fixed period ends, it’s likely your energy bill will rise.
What support is available?
- Check what tariff you are on. Look at your energy bill to find out.
- If you’re struggling to pay, contact your energy supplier and ask if they have any support packages or payment options available.
- Comparison sites like U-Switch is currently advising people NOT to switch. There’s lots of useful advice on their website.
- Citizen Advice has advice about grants and benefits to help you pay your energy bills. It also has advice on what to do if your energy supplier goes bust.
- If you’re struggling or worried, contact our tenancy impact team for support and advice. Call or email firstname.lastname@example.org