The Rise In Energy Prices

April 13, 2022 • Lewis Goldsbury

There are rising energy prices in the UK right now, and your bills are about to change. Europe has entered an energy crisis due to China’s demand for natural gas, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and the weather conditions of the last year. A record-high increase in natural gas prices has left the UK’s energy suppliers scrambling for resources.

There is a lot of information online about gas prices, energy price caps and energy suppliers. So, in today’s post, we’ll break down the current energy market and exactly what these changes mean for you.

Why Are UK Energy Prices Rising?

First up, Europe had a cold winter from 2020 to 2021 – significantly reducing gas and electricity stores across the continent. The harsh winter was followed by a fairly windless summer, and little wind energy was generated. Thanks to the weather, the energy crisis was already looming by the time we reached Autumn 2021!

Then, there was a huge increase in demand for natural gas in China as they aimed to use more renewable energy. China aims to move away from fossil fuels, like coal, and into the more sustainable energy route. Wholesale gas prices almost doubled in one week due to China’s sky-high demand.

As a result of the shocking wholesale gas and electricity prices, 29 energy suppliers were forced to close their doors or enter special administration. Millions of households were left without a provider and switched to a more expensive deal from a new energy supplier.

We entered 2022 in an energy crisis – but it wasn’t over yet! Russia’s invasion of Ukraine left the entire world aghast for many reasons. One of them is that Russia is the biggest natural gas exporter in the world. If Vladimir Putin stops or restricts supplies to Europe, the wholesale energy market will soar once again. Our energy bills could hit over £3,000 a year!

How Much Will My Energy Bills Go Up By?

Many households are panicking about their energy bills and wondering exactly how much they’ll need to pay. Of course, the amount you pay for your bills will largely depend on how much energy you use.

Here’s what we know about the rise in energy bills so far:

If you’re on a standard tariff, you’ll see an average increase of £693. For example, your bills could go from £1,277 to £1,970 per year.

If you’re a prepayment customer, you’ll see an average increase of £708. For example, your bills could go from £1,309 to £2,017 annually.

If you’re on a fixed price tariff, your energy bills will not increase until your deal ends. Just remember that when the fixed-rate contract concludes, you’re likely to see a significant increase in your energy bill. You can save money by looking for the best energy deals around on energy comparison sites.

What Is The Energy Price Cap, And Does It Affect Me?

The energy price cap is a form of protection from the government that states the maximum amount suppliers can charge households in England, Scotland and Wales. It is updated twice a year to track wholesale prices.

A new energy price cap has just been introduced, so energy providers can now increase bills by a staggering 54%. The updated energy price cap will impact around 22 million customers, and it is expected to rise again in October.

The price cap applies in the following scenarios:

  • You’re on a default energy tariff – paying by direct debit, standard credit or a prepayment meter.
  • Your supplier has stopped trading, and you’ve switched to a new supplier.

The price cap does not apply if:

  • You’re on a fixed-term energy tariff.
  • You’ve chosen a standard variable green energy tariff Ofgem has exempted from the cap.

Can I Compare And Switch My Energy Supplier?

Switching energy providers is quick and easy – and you’ll not lose your energy supply in the process. That’s an energy switch guarantee. Plus, it should take no more than 21 days.

Most people switch to the cheapest energy supplier or a green energy supplier. Unfortunately, you’re unlikely to find a cheaper supplier in the current market – but you might find a better company for your home, location and energy preferences. Make sure you have a good reason for switching to a new energy supplier and research the different energy tariffs involved.

Here is a quick overview of switching energy providers – whether gas, electric or a dual fuel tariff.

  1. Dig out your latest energy bill and get an accurate quote of your current energy usage and the tariff you’re on.
  2. Compare prices online and get a quote in just a few minutes. Choose the best energy supplier for your household and research their gas and electricity supply.
  3. Fill out your switch application and provide your new gas and electricity supplier with updated meter readings.
  4. Pay the last bill from your old energy supplier.
  5. Switch energy suppliers, and start a new energy bill.

How Can I Cut Down On My Energy Costs?

It’s more important than ever to cut down on the amount of gas and electricity you use. Energy efficiency can save you a lot of money these days. Here are a few simple tips to lower your high energy costs:

Wash laundry in cold water

Most detergents can be used with cold water, and your clothes will be just as clean. In fact, your clothing will probably be in better condition as a result!

Limit your use of the tumble dryer

We all like to wash and dry our clothes in one fell swoop. A tumble dryer is an easy solution – but unfortunately, it’s not a cost-effective one. As an alternative, use a drying rack, or hang your clothes out in the fresh air from time to time if you can.

Take shorter showers

Hot water is expensive and it can quickly ramp up your energy bills. Save money this summer and start taking short showers. Turn off the water when shaving, applying shampoo, and brushing your teeth.

Turn off the lights

You don’t need to have the lights on all day long, especially when you’re not even home. Get into the habit of turning off the lights before leaving the house in the morning and going to bed at night. If you live in a darker space, switch to LED bulbs to save energy instead.

Get a smart meter

You can monitor your energy usage with a smart meter at home. Keep a close eye on your energy usage throughout the month, and note particularly costly times. For example, you’re likely to use more gas and electricity in the colder months when the heating is on.

Compare energy deals

We’ve already covered this one, but it’s important to compare energy suppliers before switching. Compare gas and electricity prices separately, and make sure your energy company has the best energy deals.

Use a thermostat

In the winter months, your heating bills can escalate very quickly. Take a look at your gas and electricity bills, and work out a reasonable budget for your winter heating. Use a thermostat to put the heating on a timed system, like one hour in the morning and two hours at night. Pair the thermostat schedule with ample insulation, and enjoy an energy-efficient home.

Switch to an energy-efficient appliance

Whether it’s a washing machine or freezer, energy-efficient appliances can reduce your bills and carbon footprint. Take a look at the EU energy efficiency rating on your household appliances, and see if you can make any savings. For example, an energy-efficient tumble dryer could save you a whopping £106 per year! At Fair for You we have plenty of top-brand appliances available on flexible repayment plans – including cookers, washers and dryers!

Find Out More

If you or anyone you know is struggling to afford the basic items to furnish their home or support their family, then Fair for You is here to help. We look to offer essential goods to those on a low income, but in a way, that’s different to other companies – our focus is on people, not profit!

With no deposits and no hidden fees, our flexible payment schedules are designed to give you control and peace of mind. You choose how you pay and when you pay. Simply apply for a loan from us, and we pay the retailer directly for you.

Check out our online store today to see what’s available – including appliances from Whirlpool, home furniture, and much more.

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