50% of UK Households Cutting Back on Energy

Over 50% of UK households are cutting back on gas and electricity use due to the cost-of-living crisis

More than half of UK households have reduced energy usage because of the cost-of-living crisis.

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In a bid to cut costs, a new survey carried out by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has revealed that 52% of the UK population are using less gas and electricity.

The poll, carried out between the 25th of May and the 5th of June, also showed an increase in the number of people saying they are spending less on food and essentials. Two weeks ago 36% of people were spending less, but now 41% are cutting back.

Following a change in the government price cap, average energy bills for families on a standard variable tariff went up by 54% in April.

Last Thursday, the cost of filling up a family-size car surpassed £100 for the first time following a dramatic increase in the price of petrol, with the RAC hailing it ‘a dark day for drivers’.

Average costs going up

The ONS survey also found that:

  • 40% of people are cutting back on non-essential travel to avoid paying more for petrol
  • More than three-quarters of households said they have witnessed an increase in the price of fuel

The average cost of petrol is now 183.2p per litre, and 188.8p per litre for diesel, according to the latest data from the RAC and Experian.

The cost of oil has increased, sparked by the Russian invasion of Ukraine and a post-COVID surge in demand, resulting in soaring petrol and diesel prices.

Many fear prices will increase even further, with a combination of CPI inflation increasing to 9% in April and China’s manufacturing sector only just returning to business following a series of strict lockdowns.

AA president Edmund King said: 

High streets are already reeling from families cutting back in this cost-of-living crisis. With soaring petrol costs, shop tills are haemorrhaging £23 million a day to fuel. Worse still, as the holiday season approaches, UK tourism will see millions of pounds of potential spending by visitors lost to higher petrol costs at forecourts along the way. This is the worst week of pump pain so far for drivers.

How can you protect yourself?

With costs rising across the board, everyone is going to be feeling the pinch. While the Chancellor unveiled a series of measures to help people with the cost-of-living crisis, including energy bill discounts for every UK household, now is the time to consider how you can save:

  • Monitor your spending. Take the time to check in with your spending, so you know exactly where your money is going. If you are a landlord, our free Income and Expense Tracker can help with this
  • Save where you can. Consider how you spend your money and if you can make any savings. Are there journeys you could walk instead of drive, for example? 
  • Spend where you must. As a landlord, this doesn’t mean cutting corners. Make sure you are keeping on top of your legal responsibilities and investing in the right insurance. While spending may feel counterintuitive, making sure you are covered against emergencies or missed rent will save you money in the long run
  • Remortgage. If you know you need to remortgage soon, don’t let it slide. Call one of our mortgage advisors who will be able to help you and advise on how the increased base rates could affect your remortgage

It’s a tough time and it can be worrying, so do your best to care for your mental health as well as your financial health. There is absolutely no shame in asking for help if you need it!

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