Energy bills to be more detailed but not necessarily any cheaper
Everyone is going to start getting super-detailed energy bills. The thrilling news is that we'll all get 'improved' information on regular bills and an annual cost of gas and electricity. All households will get an annual statement between 1st July and 1st December, leaving you with the option of not reading a load more guff thrown your way from rip-off energy tarts.
The Guardian reports that these new statements will show the tariff you are on, how much energy you have used in the past year and the estimated cost for the following year... the latter designed to make you really depressed no doubt.
One small mercy is that these statements will now show any discounts you receive and any that you might be entitled to. There will also be advice on how to switch supplier.
This is all being introduced as part of action from the energy regulator, Ofgem, who want us all to get the most out of our energy suppliers. This comes on the back of new standards of conduct which mean that suppliers aren't allowed to flog any ol' rubbish to you that is deemed 'inappropriate' or something that the customer 'doesn't fully understand'. The latter could be rather contentious.
"Annual statements are going to be very important in terms of helping consumers manage both their finances and energy better. The statements will provide households with all the information that they need to check their current rate and energy plan, and make it easier for them to go online and save money by switching," says Ann Robinson, director of consumer policy at uSwitch.com.
"But it remains to be seen how energy companies will present this information and how consumer-friendly these statements will be. If customers are to benefit then it is vital that each company makes their statement as clear and straightforward as possible. Consumers have struggled to understand energy bills in the past; if suppliers get these statements right then that issue could be laid to rest."
What's the betting that these new statement are written in bloody hieroglyphics or something?