- Heating the home is the biggest financial anxiety this winter -
Consumers are still worried when it comes to their energy bills with over half (56 per cent) stating that heating the home is the biggest cause of financial headaches, more so than paying the mortgage (39 per cent).
New research* commissioned by energy provider Co-operative Energy shows that staying warm this winter is of greater concern to consumers than the rising cost of the weekly shop (46 per cent) and escalating motoring and transport costs (30 per cent).
The research comes hot on the heels of Co-operative Energy’s calls for the energy industry to waive exit penalties for customers. It backed up this call by offering to pay the penalties of customers who wanted to switch to it.
Since launching last May, Co-operative Energy has amassed over 18,000 profit sharing customers. It is also the only energy supplier to offer one, simple to understand tariff. There are no exit penalties and customers are not locked into a fixed price contract.
In anticipation of more wintry weather still to come, 37 per cent are worried how they are going to pay their bills with nearly half (47 per cent) concerned that elderly relatives will find it very difficult to cope. A further 12 per cent confessed to not being able to pay their energy bills more than once in the past 12 months.
Co-operative Energy’s Nigel Mason said: “Our latest research findings have identified some surprising and frankly worrying results from beleaguered energy consumers. We provide customers with a transparent, fair and competitively priced energy offering. In addition, our simple to understand one tariff combined with our stance on paying exit penalties is a statement of our intent to lead the way in the energy market, ensuring consumers continue to get a fair deal when it comes to their energy.”
Co-operative Energy was the first supplier to announce a price cut this winter and remains one of the few to have cut both its gas and electricity prices.
The research also highlighted:
- Besides energy, car insurance is the next service that people are keen to switch with 21 per cent having already done so. This is followed by home insurance (20 per cent), broadband (15%) and mobile (14%)
- 53 per cent have been forced to switch off their heating to save money
- 68 per cent have donned extra clothing to keep warm
- 32 per cent concentrate on heating one room in the house
- 74 per cent believe they have become more energy conscious in the battle to cut the bills
- 11 per cent believe their personal hygiene standards have taken a nosedive as a result of trying to reduce their energy bills
*Independent research conducted with a nationally representative sample of 2,000 adults aged between 18-65 in the UK. Research by YouSayPay conducted in January 2012.