Martin Lewis explains about the importance of meter readings
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While Prime Minister Liz Truss announced the new energy bill price cap will be set at £2,500 and won’t rise again for the next six months, Martin Lewis says this is still just under double what most were paying last winter. He shared some good advice for billpayers to help them save money on their energy bills.
Financial journalist Martin Lewis has shared some new advice to viewers of his Money Show in ITV tonight after Liz Truss froze the energy bill price cap at £2,500 last week.
While he welcomed the move he warned people that it is not a guarantee and some could end up paying more.
He said: “There is no total cap on what you can pay – this is just an illustration of what someone will pay on typical usage.”
Mr Lewis explained that while the standing charge is capped at 46p for electricity and 28.5p for gas people still need to watch their usage.
As well as watching energy usage – the financial journalist also encouraged peopel to take a meter reading the week of September 30th.
He suggested taking a picture of the reading to eliminate any discrepancy – but said people with prepay and smart meters don’t have to do this.
“The reason for it is that on 1st October almost all energy prices change – most are up – a few like we discussed before are on fixes – drop.
“Now if you pay by direct debit firms estimate your usage and 90 percent of you do pay by direct debit.”
He continued: “They also estimate when it’s used so you don;t want them to assign more of your units to the more expensive period.
How do you stop that? You submit a meter reading – take a picture when you do it too so you’ve got evidence and that way there’s no estimate and there’s no discrepancy.”
People on pre payment meters should consider topping up as much as they can in September to keep that rate into October, although he said this doesn’t work for gas.
Apart from Eon and Scottish Power, the big energy firms said while this works for non smart meters but they have the right to ask for the money back.
Martin encouraged people to think twice before cancelling direct debits, reminding people they would pay 9 oercent more for paper bills.
He also said that lower energy users would save money after the new price cap and £400 Government energy bill support was taken into account.
A household with bills of around £1,500 a year, or £125 a month, will now pay 19% less this year than last after the discount.
However, for higher users it’s likely to be 19 to 20 percent more.
A viewer called Yvette asked Martin for his advice on fixed tariffs.
She said: “My father is on fixed for his energy and I want to try and help him switch to a different provider but there’s a £150 exit fee he can’t afford.
The money expert said people on higher level fixes will be able to move without charge and he should soon be hearing form his provider.
Finally, he urged anyone in financial difficulty to speak to their provider to see what support they could offer.
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