Following recent price hikes from leading energy suppliers Scottish Power and British Gas, another leading provider Npower has also announced plans to increase their prices.
This comes as a new blow for customers as it means that 5 of the ëbig 6í UK energy suppliers have now increased their prices by at least 15% this year.
Npower has increased its gas prices by 15.7% and electricity by 12.2%, adding an average of £133 to the annual dual fuel bill.
The main reason behind the price hikes is the increased price in wholesale gas that suppliers have to pay.
The number of UK households now facing fuel poverty as a direct result of the increased prices has risen from 5.1 million to an estimated 6.4 million people.
Here are some top tips to help beat the winter fuel bills.
1. Switch suppliers
Now is as good a time as any to shop around and switch suppliers. With the majority of leading suppliers increasing their prices, now is the best time to find out which one will offer you the best deal to switch. You could save hundreds by switching energy suppliers. It is very likely that the remaining energy provider of the big 6, EDF will follow and raise their prices though.
Many providers now offer long term fixed rate tariffs to insure against further price hikes. However, if you do not wish to have a fixed rate, hold back and wait for other energy suppliers to hike their prices so you can then compare the rates and tariffs.
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2. Insulate your home
One simple way to reduce Fuel bills in the long term is to insulate your home. If your home has cavity walls, insulating cavity walls could significantly reduce the amount of energy you consume by up to 15%. This could save you an average of £120 a year.
3. Change your habits
Become more energy efficient by changing your everyday habits. According to research by Friends of the Earth, appliances left on standby still use 70% of their usual energy. By turning off appliances, you could save an average of £40 a year.
During the colder months it is a good idea to lower the heating when you go to bed and have it turned off during the day. By using energy efficient light bulbs and natural light where possible, you could also cut down your electricity use.