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Kettle boiling

How much does your energy use really cost?

We all know we’re meant to turn off the light and shut the door to stop wasting energy, but it’s the day-to-day usage that really eats into your pocket. And the best way to spend as little as possible is to switch supplier.

Even the most energy conscious still has to plug in at some point each week, yet a third of us are surprised by our energy bills according research by E.On.

Part of the unexpected size of the bill comes down to a lack of awareness of what it actually costs to use electricity at home. In fact we’re more likely to know how much it costs for six eggs or a TV streaming service.

The price of plugging in

Flicking the switch for a cup of tea is probably second nature, but boiling a kettle three times a day for a week costs 94p. That’s more than £50 a year.

Dishwashers can be among the biggest guzzlers, with using one every day for a week coming in at £1.82.

Even the things you don’t think about are costing you cash in the background. E.On found running an average fridge sets us back 50p each week- and only 36% of us were aware of that cost.

How to cut your energy bill

Of course you’ll know that the best way to reduce what you pay on your gas and electricity is to switch supplier, and probably to fix your energy tariff too.

But if you know that, why haven’t you done it? Here are three reasons people give – and why they don’t add up.

Your landlord won’t let you

If you are paying the bill directly to the energy supplier you are entitled to choose who you pay – and find the best deal. You can also chose to move from a pre-payment meter to a credit meter. However, you should of course let the landlord or agency know first


You’re worried you’ll lose power

You can understand why you’d be anxious about changing. What if there’s a gap while the switch happens like with broadband? Or what if the gas isn’t as good as what you currently get.

Well, don’t worry. It’s exactly the same energy being delivered to your home. Nothing stops, nothing changes. It’s simply who you pay that is different.

You’ve been with them for ages

Sure, sometimes loyalty can pay, but not with energy. There’s no long service discount to keep your business, as you often find with mobile phone contracts. There’s simply the price they charge.

If you’re really worried about this and don’t want to change supplier, you probably can still save by making sure you are on the cheapest deal they provide.

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  • maurice oconnell / 15 December 2015

    Valuable information. Thanks.

  • jenniferglen / 14 December 2015

    You can't if you have arrears :(

  • Caroline / 13 December 2015

    It's not loyalty, or fear of losing power, it's the hassle! We've done it a few times now, and at least twice it has been a pain in the whatsit, getting the transition to go smoothly, getting any owed money back, or finding we're in debt to the one we've left and so having to pay them a lump sum. That's the reason, not anything else

  • Niall Simpson / 13 December 2015

    Try switching to the Co-op for gas and electricity supplies; they are much more "honest" than the Big Six!