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Worried about rising energy bills? We can help

Man in kitchen looking at energy bill

The Energy price cap will be fixed from 1 October but bills remain severely high; almost twice as high as last October. This means that many Scottish households will still struggle to manage their bills and stay warm at home in the coming months.

The UK Government’s Energy Price Guarantee takes effect on Saturday 1 October and will fix the price per kWh for gas and electricity for the next two years. This will provide households protection from any further price increases resulting from a rise in the wholesale cost of gas. However, the average home’s annual bill will be approximately £2,500 – an increase of 97% compared to last October and 27% compared to the last price cap period in April-September 2022 (based on energy price cap levels, and not taking into account UK Government support like the Energy Support Scheme).

Read on to find out how we can help you with reducing the energy you use and where to go if you have issues with your energy prices, your energy supplier or debt.

Make simple changes

You might be surprised by how much money you can save by making simple changes to cut your energy use at home. For example, switching your appliances off at the wall instead of leaving them on standby could save you £65 a year and won’t cost you a penny. Or, reducing your time to four minutes in the shower could save you £95 a year.

Energy Saving Trust’s website has plenty of practical quick wins that could save you up to £564 a year on your energy bills.

Give your home an energy upgrade

The cost of heating your home and your water accounts for more than half the typical energy bill, so having an efficient heating system can make a big difference. Likewise, if your home is well insulated, less heat can escape so your heating system shouldn’t have to work as hard. If you don’t already have heating controls, installing and using a full set could save you £180 a year.

Upgrading your heating system, or topping up your insulation, can be an investment but could be worth it in the long run as you’ll save on your bills. Plus, you could get funding from the Scottish Government to help cover costs.

Check our Funding Finder to see what you could be eligible for.

Take control of your heating

Heating controls help you keep your home comfortably warm, without over-heating and wasting energy. If you have heating controls, it’s good practice to adjust them throughout the year to ensure you have a comfortable home. Visit Energy Saving Trust’s website to learn how to use your heating controls – everything from thermostats to zone controls are covered.

Draughtproofing and managing damp and condensation is another way to keep your home warm – and is important for your own health too.

Understand your energy bill

Energy bills can look complicated but it’s important to learn how to read them to ensure you’re being charged correctly. Watch our video that breaks down how to read an energy bill.

If you don’t take and submit regular meter readings, your energy bill will probably be an estimate of what your energy supplier thinks you use. We recommend taking regular meter readings and sending them to your energy supplier so you can make sure you’re not being overcharged and are staying up to date with your costs. This is particularly important when the price we’re paying for energy is changing so much.

Warmer Homes Scotland

Warmer Homes Scotland is a Scottish Government programme that provides free heating, insulation and more to eligible households that are struggling to stay warm and keep up with energy costs. It offers energy saving improvements up to the value of £5,000. Over 29,000 households have already benefitted since the programme launched, and now, with eligibility criteria recently extended, an additional 110,000 households could benefit. See if you’re eligible and find out how to apply.

Other organisations that can help

We work with a range of other organisations that can help you if you’re struggling with debt, problems with your energy supplier or wider cost of living increases. Take a lot at our article on where to turn for financial support during these difficult times to find the right information for your own situation.

Get advice you can trust

If you’re struggling to keep warm at home and keep up with your energy costs, we’re here to help you. As well as tips on how to save energy and advice on making your home warmer, we can check if you’re eligible for special discounts from energy suppliers and other funding. We can also help you get a benefits and tax credit check so you’re not missing out on additional income.

Call us on 0808 808 2282 between 8am and 8pm, Monday to Friday, and Saturdays 9am to 5pm, or use our contact form to get in touch via email.

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