Gas and electricity prices have rocketed over these past 18 months.
Despite periods of bitter cold recently, energy supplier Scottish and Southern Energy saw a year-on-year drop in household energy consumption between 1st October 2009 and 31st January 2010, suggesting that customers turned their heating down during the cold snap.
But despite this evidence of consumers self-rationing their energy, Britain’s big six energy suppliers are remaining tight-lipped about the prospect of cutting prices:
- Bitter weather should have pushed up household usage, but Scottish and Southern Energy reports a year-on-year 5% drop in gas consumption and a 4% drop in electricity consumption per customer between 1st October 2009 and 31st January 2010 – consumers could be self-rationing because of concerns over the cost of energy
- Scottish and Southern Energy’s half year profits were up 36% from £302.6m in September 2008 to £410.5m in September 2009
- Suppliers increased prices by 42% or £381 in 2008 and cut by 4% or £54 last year
- Average household bill now £1,239 a year – £327 or 36% more than at the beginning of 2008 despite last year’s price cuts
Most energy companies offer discounts if bills are settled promptly or paid by direct debit. With scare stories in today’s mainstream media about future fuel shortages resulting in even higher bills, it’s probably a good idea to shop around and compare different suppliers’ prices.
There’s also a post about home insulation schemes here.