Has anyone noticed it's been a little chilly lately? While the mercury's been plummeting, the thermostat has been turned up a notch or two, and that means people up and down the country have been spending far more on their heating than normal. To the tune of £273m, in fact. And it's only just the beginning…
Research from energyhelpline.com shows that, on average, Brits are spending an extra 65p a day on heating their homes to beat the freezing temperatures, and that kind of spending can quickly ramp up.
Indeed, with much of the country having experienced sub-zero temperatures for 16 days of the year so far, an extra £18.2m has been spent every day across the UK's 28m households, which means that between us, we've spent a whopping £273m extra on our heating bills – and all in just 16 days.
Unfortunately, worse could be to come: not only have we had freezing temperatures in January, but February and March will probably see several providers ramp up their prices, which means we could be spending even more on our gas and electricity in the months ahead.
"Brits are in for a double blow as record sub-zero temperatures in January are followed closely by price rises in February and March," said Mark Todd, co-founder of energyhelpline. "As the UK has been hit by sub-zero temperatures for over half the month, heating systems are having to work much harder to fight off the icy conditions and keep families warm.
"To add insult to injury, energy bills are likely to increase soon. At energyhelpline we are expecting a big supplier price rise to be announced in the next few weeks and more announcements in late February and early March."
The price rises are expected to be in the region of between 5 and 10%, at least for electricity, which means your energy bills could take a definite hit. The impact on a typical household bill will be an extra £25-£50 a year, according to energyhelpline, amounting to an extra £700m-£1.4bn on energy bills across the UK.
"The UK energy market continues to be very split between one which offers good value to switchers but poor value to loyal customers," said Mark. "By switching customers can avoid the price hikes, save £100-£200 a year and get a fixed rate. It's a no brainer – our advice is take a few minutes to switch today."
Great advice! There are already some fantastic savings to be made, and switching now means you could beat any upcoming price rises, too.
Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.