Martin Lewis says energy customers could be charged £273 despite low use | Personal Finance | Finance

For some, the crisis has become so life-threatening they have been forced to turn essential appliances like fridges and freezers off in a bid to save money. Others have cut down on TV use, washing clothes and cooking.

However, Martin Lewis says that, even if you use no energy at all, you can still be charged £273. He explained how everyone has to pay a standing charge on their energy bill, Manchester Evening News reports.

The standing charge is a fixed daily amount you have to pay for energy, no matter how much you use – it covers the cost of being connected to the grid. Speaking on ITV Good Morning Britain this morning, Martin broke down how much this charge per year is climbing from October.

At the moment, the average daily standing charge for gas is 27.22p and this is rising to 28.49p in October. The average daily standing charge for electricity is 45.34p, rising to 46.36p.

Ofgem last week confirmed its price cap – which is how much energy companies can charge you per unit rate of gas and electricity – will rise to £3,549 a year on October 1. This is for those on default tariffs paying by direct debit and marks a rise of £1,578 – or 80% – from its current level of £1,971.

For those paying by prepayment meter – typically vulnerable households or those struggling to pay for their energy – there is a bigger jump from £2,017 to £3,608. Standard credit customers – those who pay once they have received their bill – will see their price cap rise from £2,100 to £3,764.

Approximately 24 million households are covered by the energy price cap, including four million on prepayment meters.

The huge rise in the price cap will add more pressure to families already struggling with the cost of living crisis.

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