Warning as 140,000 households will see energy bills soar by up to £190 a year when fixed-price deals run out this month
- 140,000 British households could see their energy bills rocket by up to £190
- Forty-seven money saving deals are scheduled to run out at the end of January
- The average price will soar by £114 per year, but some customers’ could be more
- Last year Ofgem was criticised for increasing the price cap by an average of £117
More than 140,000 British households could see their energy bills rocket by up to £190 at the end of the month as swathes of money saving deals expire, experts have warned.
Forty-seven energy deals are scheduled to run out at the end of January meaning many customers will be rolled onto frequently much high default tariffs, uSwitch revealed.
The average price will soar by £114 per year, but some customers could see an eye-watering £190 increase if they are switched to their supplier’s standard variable tariff – ultimately adding £16 million to bills across Great Britain.
Forty-seven energy deals are scheduled to run out at the end of January meaning many customers will be rolled onto frequently much high default tariffs, uSwitch revealed
‘People are already feeling the strain on their wallets after Christmas, and the last thing they need is for their energy bill to shoot up,’ Cordelia Samson, an energy expert at uSwitch, said.
‘Anyone whose fixed energy deal is coming to an end soon will be rolled on to an expensive Standard Variable Tariff if they don’t choose a new, cheaper plan.’
Market watchers generally believe that regulator Ofgem is likely to reduce its maximum cap on the standard tariffs as part of its next six-month review.
These changes will be announced at the beginning of February, but are not set to come into force until April 1.
If there is a change, it will be the third from Ofgem since the price cap was introduced in January last year.
It has helped put some downward pressure on bills, and had a major effect on the bottom lines of some suppliers.
However, critics still say that switching to a new provider can cut bills much further than a change to the price cap.
The Big Six – British Gas, EDF, Npower, E.On, SSE and Scottish Power: Customers could see their bills rocket as 47 money saving deals expire
‘Even if the cap is reduced, those energy customers on default tariffs could still be overpaying by around £300 a year,’ uSwitch said.
Last year Ofgem was criticised for increasing the price cap by £117 for the average customer in April, just three months after it was first introduced, wiping out the £76 saving that January’s cap had promised. It later reduced the cap by £75.
Consumers reacted with fury following the increased price cap when they were hit by the first wave of energy bills.
Around 11million customers were hit with an average increase of £117 per year and branded the charge a ‘rip-off’ that would ‘fund managers’ holidays’.
Ofgem was slammed as ‘useless’ for increasing the cap that was supposed to save cash for lower income households across the UK.
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