Nine out of ten households plan to cut back on energy use this winter to help stem rising costs

The vast majority of UK households plan to reduce their energy use this winter, including heating their homes, according to a new survey

Millions of people plan to save energy this winter
Millions of people plan to save energy this winter

More than nine in ten households are planning to save energy this winter, despite the government’s cost-of-living package.

Nearly half said they expect to reduce their consumption “big”, including heating their homes, according to a survey by consultancy Retail Economics.

Evidence that large numbers of people are preparing to make big changes this winter comes even as Chancellor Rishi Sunak announces £15billion in measures to ease the pain of soaring energy bills.

The aid, including £400 for each household, is being offered as experts warn average bills could rise by a further £1,000 to £3,000 a year from October.

Meanwhile, households could be paid to use less electricity at peak times this winter to reduce the risk of blackouts.

Proposals from National Grid’s power grid operator would reward homes with smart meters for shifting the time they use power-hungry appliances like washing machines.

Rishi Sunak announced £15billion in measures



Data from Retail Economics showed that the average household faced a 10.6% drop in their discretionary income in 2017
over the past year, allowing them to spend £127 less a month on non-essentials.

Chief Executive Richard Lim said: “The cost of living continues to rise, hitting all households in the UK but particularly the most disadvantaged.

“After families pay for essentials, the remaining cash left over for outings, socializing and other goodies dwindles at an amazing rate.”

It comes as a disabled woman is housebound as rising energy costs mean she can no longer afford to charge her electric wheelchair.

Millions of people will be driving back this winter


(Getty Images/EyeEm)

Jade Cotton, who suffers from cerebral palsy, epilepsy and scoliosis, said she has already plunged into the red and borrowed money from relatives to pay the bills.

The 34-year-old from Birmingham is struggling to cope after her electricity bills soared to prohibitive levels. New research has shown that the cost of living crisis is hitting disabled people hard – half of disabled households in the West Midlands are in debt.

Jade and her husband Andy had to use their overdrafts and borrow money from the family to cover their overheads. To further reduce costs, the couple were forced to stop charging Jade’s power wheelchair overnight.

Jade said, “We hardly go out anymore.

“I have a power chair, but I don’t charge it every night because we can’t afford it.

“We can’t go out like we used to – it’s really impacted my mental health because I enjoy going out and meeting my family. Although we go out less and try to save money where we can, we’re both still in debt and have had to borrow money from Andy’s parents to pay the utility bills.”

Last month, the Government announced a one-off living allowance for disabled people of £150 to help disabled people cope with the skyrocketing cost of living – with those in the lowest income bracket receiving an extra £650.

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Fry Electronics Team

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