Energy bills still 31% higher than 2008 despite price cuts

Energy bills still 31% higher than 2008 despite price cuts

16 March 2010 / by Rachael Stiles

Consumers are still paying 31 per cent more on their energy than they were in 2008, despite two rounds of price cuts, according to

A round of price cuts last year and another recent one from the Big Six energy providers has seen average energy bills fall eight per cent, cutting just £102 off the average bill, the comparison website says.

The price rises in 2008 saw energy bills soar 42 per cent, or £381 a year, adding a collective £4.3billion to total household energy bills, and the 2009/2010 price cuts have only shaved off £1.2billion.

This gap between rises and cuts has left consumers paying £3.1billion more to energy providers than they were two years ago, paying an average £1,191 a year compared to £912 in 2008.

Rather than waiting for gas and electricity providers to significantly reduce their energy bills, urges consumers to give themselves a price cut by comparing prices and switching energy provider.

Online energy plans can knock up to £300 off the average annual energy bill, it suggests, compared to providers' standard tariffs, so consumers should take matters into their own hands.

Ann Robinson, director of consumer policy at, says that energy price cuts to date, most of which will not come into effect until after the coldest weather is over, will seem like a "drop in the ocean" for cash strapped consumers

"My advice to those who were relying on price cuts to bring their energy bills down to a more manageable level is to shop around," she said, and online energy tariffs have fallen 19 per cent in the  time it has taken standard prices to fall eight per cent.

Ms Robinson added: "I would like to see all households move to dual fuel, pay by direct debit and sign up to an online plan so that they can enjoy lower prices straight away."

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