New research carried out by Cornwall Insights suggests that the energy price cap is likely to hit £3,000 by January of next year. Pressures on the wholesale gas and electricity market, partially resulting from the war in Ukraine, are hitting the pockets of everyday Britons hard. Consumers will experience a substantial price hike in October before seeing their energy bills reach the £3,000 threshold three months after.
In light of this, the Government has rolled out various support schemes, including a non-repayable energy bill rebate worth £400, to mitigate the damage caused by the price hike.
This reduction on a household’s energy expenditure will appear as a credit from energy suppliers as of October.
Eligible households do not need to apply for this rebate as it will be automatically applied to their energy bill.
Despite the Government’s wave of recent support, people will have to wait months for it to arrive while bills and inflation continue to skyrocket.
However, Rebecca Dibb-Simkin, a product officer for Octopus Energy, believes suppliers are the ones who should be doing more to help people survive the cost of living crisis.
Ms Dibb-Simkin explained: “The Government’s help packages, which combine support for all households and targeted support for people who need it the most, are already making a real difference.
“But of course we’d like the Government to continue to closely review the situation and provide further support should more be needed. However, it’s not only the Government that needs to help people through this crisis.
“Energy suppliers also need to continue to provide additional assistance for the people who need it most.”
Part of the reason bills have gone up in the UK is due to the multitude of energy suppliers which have gone out of business over the past year.
Households will have to pay £94 more a year on their bills each to cover the £2.7billionn cost that came from 28 suppliers going under.
As a result of this, less competition means consumers have less choices to pick from the suppliers who are hiking their rates exponentially.
Providing examples of how suppliers can assist their customers, the energy expert noted that in-house rebate schemes are beneficial in easing the financial burden on households.
She added: “We are doing everything we can to help our customers who are struggling with their bills this year.
“We’re the only large energy supplier to price our standard variable tariff ‘Flexible Octopus’ below the current energy price cap, £50 lower for existing customers.
“This £50 rebate, which amounts to around £50million for the current price cap period, together with the £100million in cost increases we’ve already absorbed on behalf of our customers means that Octopus Energy is effectively supporting its customers with £150million.
“Earlier this year, we also doubled the size of our now £5millon financial hardship fund. The fund is open to all of our customers who need it and has helped over 50,000 people so far.”
Furthermore, Ms Didd-Simkin encouraged consumers to look out for deals and offers made available by suppliers which could see them reduce their energy costs by acquiring special equipment.
“Last winter we launched our first electric blankets scheme to help customers save energy and money,” she said.
“We sent 7,000 free electric blankets to customers who needed them most, and analysis showed that the scheme saved customers 19 percent on costs compared to customers without electric blankets.”