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Households hit by utility price hikes

02 May 2012

Household bills have gone up at almost double the rate of inflation over the last ten years, research has revealed.

Essential bills are one of the biggest strains on a household’s finances.

But it is possible to reduce the expense by comparing utilities with Money Expert.

Research by Santander has found that household bills are increasing much quicker than inflation, and are putting a real strain on homeowners’ finances.

Over the last decade, the average cost of household bills has gone up by 71%. This is almost twice as much as the 38% increase in RPI inflation.

The biggest contributor to the high increases is gas, which has almost trebled in price in the past ten years. Electricity and water have also skyrocketed, going up 109% and 64% in the same period respectively.

“Times are tough for a lot of people at the moment and increasing household bills are one of the biggest causes of squeezed consumer finances,” said Carlos Palacios, banking director at Santander.

“People have already been forced to make a number of adjustments to their lifestyle to cope with the hikes, and many will struggle to cope with further increases such as the water bill hikes recently announced.”

The increases in utility bills have also outstripped income increases in the past decade, which have gone up by an average of 24%.

Nearly a third of people said that the rises in household bills have reduced their overall standard of living, while almost eight out of ten said their life has been impacted by rising bills in the last year.

“There are a number of things people can do to reduce their household bills, from installing home energy monitors to analysing their energy usage or changing their utility suppliers,” added Mr Palacios.

You can compare utilities with Money Expert.

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