Across the UK, many households are regularly deciding to go without heating in order to save money on heating bills.
In a recent survey, a staggering 14 million said that they chose to go without heating at times during the winter in order to save money on their heating bills. A further 6 million people stated that they did this regularly.
Many of the people who were questioned, said that they would rather deal with the cold by putting on an extra layer of clothing, than pay expensive heating bills.
Big Six Cuts
This new information comes after the Big Six energy companies in the UK all stated that they were going to introducing price cuts. However consumers’ initial hopefulness soon subsided once the figures for the cuts were released. They were seen as rather paltry – ranging between 1.3% to 5.1%.
Unsurprisingly many energy buyers felt like the cuts would make no real difference to their energy bills – 49% of consumers felt this way.
A further 83% of users said that they were still regularly concerned about being able to pay their energy bills.
It has been suggested that illness related to cold temperatures, costs the NHS around £900m per year. This does not even include the cost to GP surgeries or social care.
Friends of the Earth have released information that shows the UK to have around 40% more hospital visits related to respiratory illnesses than colder places such as Sweden.
The director of policy at another price comparison site, stated:
“It’s simply unacceptable that people should feel forced to gamble with their health to try and cope with sky-high energy bills. It’s all very well for some suppliers to cut prices when spring kicks in, but millions of consumers were left out in the cold this winter.”
“It’s now high time for proper, double-digit reductions to be passed onto hard-pressed customers – many of whom have gone cold because they can’t afford to keep the heating on. In the meantime, consumers should take control by making sure their home is as energy efficient as possible and checking that they’re on the most competitive tariff.”
“Our latest figures reveal that over 4.8 million fuel vulnerable households spend a staggering 10% or more of their income on energy. The Government must urgently extend the Warm Home Discount scheme to help more consumers struggling with energy costs.”