CHESTER, England, September 26, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --
- 71 per cent of British consumers will need to turn to their savings, credit cards or overdraft to fund rising fuel bills
- Full round of price hikes from the big six energy providers adds an average 17.4 per cent to gas bills and 10.8 per cent to electricity bills
- Now is the time to review your finances, urges MoneySupermarket
The most recent round of energy price hikes added an average £155.75 per year to the cost of energy bills, and with the overall cost of living continuing to spiral, 71 per cent of British consumers will need to turn to their savings, credit cards or overdraft to fund rising bills, according to MoneySupermarket.com.
A poll conducted by Britain's number one comparison site found two fifths of consumers (42 per cent) will need to dip into their savings to cover the additional energy costs. A further 17 per cent stated they will have to use their overdraft, while 12 per cent admitted they'd need to put the cost on their credit card as they would struggle to pay their bills.
Scott Byrom, energy manager at MoneySupermarket.com, said: "UK households are being pushed to the limit at the moment, so it's no surprise to see so many turning to their savings to make ends meet. However, consumers should try to avoid dipping into savings pots to pay for energy bills and instead examine their whole finances to establish where they can reduce their monthly outgoings.
"Those turning to credit cards or an overdraft to fund basic household bills need to be careful; while it's no bad thing to use credit to help manage outgoings occasionally, consumers must ensure they can repay any money they borrow or they run the risk of falling into a spiral of debt. A credit card can provide a short term cash flow solution but you need to be disciplined and make sure you pay off the amount before the next bill arrives.
"Bill payers will be reeling from the recent price hikes, yet despite the choice available for both gas and electricity, the majority of UK households are staying loyal to their energy provider, with 57 per cent of households never switching, and are therefore paying way over the odds for their gas and electricity. The latest price increases have added an average to 17.4 per cent to the cost of gas and 10.8 per cent to the cost of electricity, resulting in average annual standard bills of £1,322, now really isn't the time to be apathetic. Those who aren't shopping around for the best deal, are simply burning money; finding the right tariff for your consumption level and region means bill payers could save on average £313 per year. For example, the cheapest online tariff available is E.ON's Save Online V9 at £982 on average, but, for £1,009 per year on average, EDF Energy's Fix S@ver v2 product offers a safeguard against price hikes until Sept 2012 for only £27 a year more"
Notes to editors:
Web poll run on the MoneySupermarket.com site between Friday 16th and Sunday 25th September 2011:
Energy price rises are adding about £200 a year to household bills. Will you struggle to cover increasing living costs?
- Yes - I'll have to dip into my savings - 42.4%
- Yes - I'll have to put more on my credit card - 11.6%
- Yes - I'll have to use my overdraft more - 16.9%
- No - I can manage on my monthly income - 23.6%
- I don't know - 5.6%
Total votes: 6,384
 According to a survey by Ofgem, 58% of gas customers have never switched their supplier while 57% of electricity customers have never switched. Therefore at least 12.3 million households have never switched supplier
Incumbent Vs Best Tariff
Best Value Tariff Incumbent Incumbent v Best Incumbent Region Tariff (Fixed) Value v Best Potential Potential Saving Saving Total (GBP) Tariff Bill (GBP) GBP % EDF Energy Fix Eastern GBP1,339.45 s@ver v2 GBP997.98 GBP341.47 25.49% EDF Energy East Fix Midlands GBP1,325.83 s@ver v2 GBP993.34 GBP332.49 25.08% EDF Energy Fix London GBP1,293.38 s@ver v2 GBP1,014.23 GBP279.15 21.58% EDF Energy North Wales Fix & Liverpool GBP1,373.36 s@ver v2 GBP1,023.47 GBP349.89 25.48% EDF Energy Fix Midlands GBP1,332.90 s@ver v2 GBP1,003.73 GBP329.17 24.70% EDF Energy Fix Northern GBP1,327.50 s@ver v2 GBP987.99 GBP339.51 25.58% EDF Energy Fix North West GBP1,351.30 s@ver v2 GBP995.85 GBP355.45 26.30% EDF Energy North Fix Scotland GBP1,281.31 s@ver v2 GBP1,032.11 GBP249.20 19.45% Scottish Power Online fix South saver Scotland GBP1,362.71 Dec 12 GBP1,015.23 GBP347.48 25.50% EDF Energy Fix South East GBP1,296.71 s@ver v2 GBP999.72 GBP296.99 22.90% EDF Energy Fix Southern GBP1,293.98 s@ver v2 GBP1,016.61 GBP277.37 21.43% EDF Energy Fix South Wales GBP1,309.13 s@ver v2 GBP1,035.57 GBP273.56 20.90% EDF Energy Fix South West GBP1,316.35 s@ver v2 GBP1,026.45 GBP289.90 22.02% EDF Energy Fix Yorkshire GBP1,298.10 s@ver v2 GBP973.23 GBP324.87 25.03% Average GBP1,321.57 GBP1,008.25 GBP313.32 23.67%
Based on medium usage consumption
Sourced by moneysupermarket.com 19.09.2011
Price rises announced by UK energy companies Summer 2011
Electricity Average Gas increase increase Standard Date Date Provider (%) (%) tariff announced effective Scottish Power 19 10 GBP1,391.21 07/06/2011 01/08/2011 British Gas 18 16 GBP1,286.04 08/07/2011 18/08/2011 Scottish and Southern 18 11 GBP1,265.00 21/07/2011 14/09/2011 E.ON 18 12 GBP1,254.55 05/08/2011 13/09/2011 npower 16 7 GBP1,289.00 16/08/2011 01/10/2011 EDF Energy 15.4 4.5 GBP1,241.00 15/09/2011 10/11/2011 Average 17.4 10.08 GBP1,287.80
Standard / Online / Fixed - New consumption rates
Average Standard Average Best Provider Tariff Tariff Fixed Tariff GBP1,125.42 GBP1,217.41 British Gas GBP1,286.04 Web Saver 12 Fixed Price June 12 EDF Energy GBP1,009.05 GBP1,009.05 (wef 10th Nov) GBP1,241.00 Fixed S@aver v2 Fixed S@aver v2 GBP982.00 GBP1,189.88 E.ON GBP1,254.55 SaveOnline v9 Fixed Price Apr 13 npower GBP982.51 GBP1,126.52 (wef 1st Oct) GBP1,282.43 Sign Online 23 Go Fix 7 GBP1,190.20 GBP1,020.29 Scottish Power GBP1,391.21 Online Energy Online Fixed Saver Dec 12 GBP1,142.18 GBP1,142.18 Scottish & Southern GBP1,265.00 Price Fix 6 Price Fix 6 Average GBP1,287.80 GBP1,071.90 GBP1,117.56
Sourced by MoneySupermarket 19.09.2011
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