According to new statistics from uswitch.com the amount of energy debt in the UK has hit £728 million and 5.5 million households, 21 per cent of all UK households are now in debt to their energy supplier.
Director of Consumer Policy at uSwitch, Ann Robinson, said: ‘The impact of the 42% or £381 hike in energy prices in 2008 cannot be underestimated, consumers are still feeling the pain and subsequent price cuts have done little to ease this.’
‘The fact remains that consumers have been left facing bills that are £315 or 26% higher than at the beginning of 2008.’
Craig Gedey Marketing Manager at Debt Advisory Line said: ‘When you take into account the coldest winter for many years and the rising costs of living whilst coping with the recession it is no surprise that people owe more than ever on their energy bills.’
‘It is interesting to see that 1 million less households are in energy debt but the average amount owed is now £132 which is 17 per cent higher than in 2008. This could be the same people who are struggling and falling further into debt with their energy bills.’
‘Taking a regular meter reading is a good way to ensure accurate bills are being sent for your energy usage and if you are struggling with any debt then speaking to a professional debt management company should take priority.’
The problem many people now face is that switching to a new and cheaper energy supplier may not be possible whilst in debt to another.