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Around 4 in 10 energy bill payers struggling to afford payments

Around 4 in 10 adults (41%) who pay energy bills said it was very or somewhat difficult to afford them.  

This was according to those asked between 17 and 28 January 2024 as part of our latest Public opinions and social trends bulletin.

This proportion was at a high of 49% in the period covering 17 to 29 May 2023, but appears to have slowly decreased since then.

The survey also revealed that 44% of adults in Great Britain are using less fuel, such as gas or electricity, in their homes because of the rising cost of living.

Of the 49% of adults who reported that their cost of living had increased over the last month, 81% cited rising gas or electricity bills as a reason for this.

Meanwhile, around one in five (19%) adults reported that they were occasionally, hardly ever, or never able to keep comfortably warm in their home in the past two weeks, according to more detailed analysis of the survey, which covers the period 18 October, 2023 and 1 January, 2024.

This is a fall from nearly one in four adults (24%) during a similar period in 2022.

In the year to January 2024 gas prices fell by 26.5% and electricity prices fell by 13.0%, according to the latest Consumer Prices Index including owner occupiers’ housing costs (CPIH) data.

Inflation rates for gas and electricity have remained similar since October 2023, when the annual rate fell to its lowest level since records began in January 1989.

Motor fuel prices continued to fall between December 2023 and January 2024.

The average price of petrol fell by 2.9 pence per litre to 139.9 pence, while average diesel prices fell 3.1 pence per litre to 172.1 pence.

Both are down on the prices seen in January 2023, when average petrol prices stood at 149.4 pence per litre, and diesel prices at 172.1 pence per litre.

These meant overall motor fuel prices fell 9.2% in the year to January 2024, compared with a fall of 10.8% in the year to December 2023.

How this affects you

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