How can you reduce your energy bills?10th July 2015
Many of you will have long felt that you're paying too much for your energy bills, but now it's official and the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) believes millions of people in the UK are being charged over the odds.
In fact, figures from the organisation show that customers with the country's six biggest energy providers were made to pay £1.2 billion a year more than they'd have had to in a more competitive market.
The CMA believes the problem is partly down to the fact that many consumers are not actively researching the market and looking for better deals. As a result, they are able to "exploit" inactive members of the public through their pricing policies.
It would therefore appear to be the case that if households are that aggrieved about the situation, they need to be proactive about it and take matters into their own hands.
After all, the government has already rejected the CMA's idea of regulating prices in the energy market, while energy providers have no reason to change their practices if their customers are staying put.
Energy UK, the industry's trade association, has already rejected the suggestion people are being ripped off, on the grounds there is much they can do to cut their utility bills.
Lawrence Slade, chief executive of Energy UK, commented: "Customers have not been overcharged but money may still be saved when people shop around for deals that suit their individual circumstances. There is greater choice for customers. It is easy to switch and a few minutes online could save households money and get them the deal that is right for them."
Customers can also be proactive by actively looking for appliances and devices with favourable energy ratings, as they will save money in the long run if they consume less power than less efficient alternatives.
And of course there is also the option of investing in home automation technology, as this enables devices to be used in a much more intelligent and responsive way.
Energenie's MiHome range is perfect for this purpose, as it offers households unprecedented control over their heating, lighting and electrical appliances, as well as monitor how much power they are consuming.
By using a mobile app that connects with internet-enabled devices, people can make sure all the key systems in their home can be controlled in a more cost-effective and smart way, so it meets their specific needs.
Of course, the government has pledged to respond to the CMA report in due course – and it will be interesting to see what it says.
Indeed, energy and climate change secretary Amber Rudd has already insisted it will not hesitate to act if "the market is not delivering a fair deal for consumers". This, she said, would include doing more to encourage switching, promoting the swift rollout of smart meters and making the energy market more competitive.
But all this could take time and it seems clear that if households want their utility bills to come down, they need to make a concerted effort to reduce their energy consumption and live in a more energy-efficient manner. With home automation technology, this task can be accomplished in a straightforward, easy and affordable way.