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Energy bills to rise by a third by 2020

Annual bill for three-bed semi may rise to £2,600

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The energy bill for a poorly-insulated home could rise by over a third (35%) by 2020, leaving four million households in fuel poverty, according to a new Which? report.

Which? commissioned economic consultancy IPA Energy + Water Economics to assess the impact of changes in energy prices on consumers’ bills.

The annual energy bill for a three-bedroom semi-detached property could rise to over £2,600 over the next decade, while a family living in a detached house could be faced with a bill of almost £4,000.

Rising wholesale prices, a growing dependence on imported energy and investment in capacity and renewable energy will all add to domestic bills over the next decade.

Future-proofing your home

By following some simple steps you can future-proof your house today and reduce your energy bills.

The basic cost of future-proofing a three-bed semi is £5,350 – based on £3,600 for double glazing, £1,000 for a new boiler and £750 for loft and wall insulation.The average time it takes for these investments to pay for themselves in savings is six years.

Which? has reviewed a range of energy saving appliances as well as energy-saving light bulbs and , and has advice on how to buy solar panels, how to install a wind turbine and how to create a more energy efficient home. 

Crippling energy bills

The full report, ‘Revealed: your energy bill in 2020’, is in the January 2010 edition of Which? magazine.

According to Which? editor Martyn Hocking: ‘Energy is going to get a lot more expensive over the next decade so the only way to avoid bigger bills is to use less of it. The Government must take urgent action to stop bills from spiralling out of control and to help consumers make their homes more energy efficient, otherwise millions of people will be faced with crippling energy bills in the future.’

Which? also asked 825 adults – those responsible for paying energy bills – how concerned they were about current and future energy costs. More than seven in ten (73%) said they would worry about being able to afford an increase of a third in energy prices, while three in ten (28%) are worried about paying current energy bills.

Lower your energy bills

If you’re concerned about your energy bills, Which? Switch can help take the hassle out of switching to a cheaper energy tariff. Compare gas and electricity prices and energy tariffs in a few minutes to find the best deal for you. Those switching with Which? Switch between January 1 and October 21 2009 saved an annual average of £263.

You can also find energy efficient appliances by using the compare features tool in our TV, washing machine, and dishwasher reviews.

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