The new Ofgem energy price cap, which comes into effect on July 1, will mean that the annual bill for a typical household will fall to £2,074. This represents a 17 per cent reduction on the current level of £2,500 a year and follows recent falls in wholesale energy prices.
Energy regulator Ofgem’s cap is based on a dual fuel household paying by direct debt, with ‘typical’ consumption.
What does the new price cap mean for me?
The cap sets a maximum price that suppliers can charge consumers for each kilowatt hour of energy they use, which is shown as kWh in bills and statements. Therefore, how much you will pay depends on how much energy you use.
It is important to note that while the incoming change will be welcomed by many, it follows two years of steeply rising prices and remains almost £1,000 higher than in April 2021. At its peak, the price cap reached £4,279 and despite this coming down substantially, it remains well above the level before the energy crisis took hold.
Many families and individuals across Scotland are continuing to struggle and will be finding these higher bills difficult to pay, with some simply unable to afford the increased prices – leading to power disconnections and fuel poverty.
Fuel poverty happens when a household spends more than 10 per cent of its income on fuel costs, and if the remaining household income is insufficient to maintain an adequate standard of living.
Will the price cap increase again?
Ofgem reviews the cap – which applies to energy suppliers rather than to the oil and gas production sector – every three months.
This means there is no guarantee that prices will remain stable, decrease again, or if they will increase in the near future.
If you are struggling or are unsure about what the change means for you, it is important to seek advice and not to suffer alone.
Advice Direct Scotland, which runs energyadvice.scot, offer free and practical support and advice on a range of issues. Our specialist advisers can help with understanding energy bills, issues with meters, complaints and disputes, and switching suppliers.
We can also provide assistance if you have had difficulty communicating with your supplier and can help you get through to speak to someone who can help.
Advisers are available on 0808 196 8660, Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, or by visiting www.energyadvice.scot.
Advice Direct Scotland can also signpost sources of support. We administer the Scottish Government’s Home Heating Support Fund, which is available to those who are rationing energy to get by – regardless of the type of meter or fuel used.
Individuals can apply directly through the website at www.homeheatingadvice.scot if they have received money and/or energy advice from an accredited agency.
You can access free, impartial advice on any topic from advice.scot by contacting 0808 800 9060 or by visiting www.advice.scot. Advice is available to everyone in Scotland, at no cost, regardless of personal circumstance.