Government reveals plans to lower energy bills
Tuesday 17th October 2017
The government has published the Draft Domestic Gas and Electricity (Tariffs Cap) Bill, which will give energy regulator Ofgem the power to cap standard variable tariffs.
Uncapped tariffs can cost hundreds of pounds a year more than the cheapest deals. About 12 million households are on some form of uncapped default tariff.
The price cap is unlikely to come in effect before winter. It will last until 2020, unless Ofgem decides that it's necessary to extend it until 2023.
Tariffs for prepayment meters, which are already subject to a cap, as well as "green" energy tariffs, will be exempt from the proposed changes.
Read more about the energy price cap draft legislation.
getting help with energy bills
On our website we have lots of information to help you save on your energy bills this winter:
- Help with fuel and water bills
- Dealing with fuel bill debt
- Making home improvements
- Energy saving tips
How energy companies can help disabled children
Higher heating and utility bills are the top extra cost faced by families with disabled children. Our Counting the Costs research found that a third of families with disabled children are going without heating.
We also found that many families are having to take out a loan for heating and many are falling behind with payments.
We spoke to mums like Claire, whose eight year old daughter has cerebral palsy. She has muscle spasms and they get worse if it's cold, so they need the heating on more. This is a problem if you can't afford to pay the bills.
Chantal, mum of Harry who has complex needs, said:
"Going without essentials like heating has a direct impact on Harry, and worrying about paying the bills means I feel stressed and anxious."
We think energy companies can help by including all disabled children in their eligibility criteria for the Warm Home Discount Scheme. This scheme can lead to a rebate worth up to £140 on electricity bills.
We would like disabled children, as pensioners are, to be part of the core group who receive the discount automatically and don't have to apply.