We have been following the changes to energy prices over recent weeks and are here to offer help and support if you need it. From 1st October 2021, energy bills may have increased for many households across the country. We know this can be a worrying and challenging time, especially as the colder months are here and energy usage increases to keep warm.

Why have my energy bills gone up?

On 1st October 2021, the energy price cap increased. This is due to the rising wholesale cost of gas and electricity and has led to some energy companies going out of business.

The energy price cap limits the standard tariff (also known as default or variable tariff) that energy suppliers can charge. You could be on standard tariff if you’ve never switched energy tariffs, or if your fixed-term energy deal ends.

Even with the price cap in place, there is no maximum limit on the total amount you will pay. The cap is on the cost per unit of energy. If you use more energy, you pay more.

What can I do about it?

If your fixed-term energy deal is due to end, at the moment a standard tariff is likely to be the cheapest option available. However, please be cautious and check with your energy supplier, as this information is changing regularly.

Do you want to save energy but are not sure where to start? - We have put together top tips to help you save energy and money on your energy bills. Please click here for our energy advice.

What if my energy supplier has gone bust?

1. Wait for Ofgem to appoint a new energy supplier

We recommend you take a meter reading and continue to save for your monthly energy payment (as you might receive a larger initial bill or higher monthly payments to recover the difference owed). Your energy supply won’t be disrupted and it should only take a few days. Ofgem’s safety net will protect your supply and any credit you have on your account. If you already have a switch in progress you will continue to move to your chosen supplier.

 2. When the new energy supplier contacts you

Please make sure you are on the cheapest tariff (currently this may be the standard tariff). They’ll also explain how they will manage your account balance, including any credit refunds.

3. Are you on the Priority Register?

The Priority Register is a free support service to help people in vulnerable situations. You could be classed as ‘vulnerable’ if you:

  • are disabled or have a long-term health condition
  • are recovering from an injury
  • have mental health problems
  • don't speak or read English well
  • have children under 5 or are pregnant
  • have reached your State Pension age.

If you were on your old energy supplier’s Priority Register, ask your new energy supplier if you’re still on it. If not, please ask to be added back on.

Help and support

If you are worried about the impact this will have on your finances, get help and support from our Money Advice Team:

We have also launched a range of projects for our customers that offer employment support, digital training and wellbeing. For more information about the projects going on in your area, please visit our community projects page.

 

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