218,000 UK households face an average £280 rise in their energy bills

energy bills
(Image credit: Getty)

This month, 157 fixed energy tariffs will come to an end. This could mean significant increases to the energy bills of over 218,000 UK households.

This is according to new research from comparethemarket.com, which has found that by the end of May, the affected households could face average price hikes of £280. This is because, if they do not switch tariffs or providers when their respective deals come to an end, they will be automatically moved onto their supplier’s more expensive ‘default’ energy tariffs.

However, this is something that can be easily avoided by simply switching to a cheaper tariff with a new provider. What’s more, if you’re one of the affected households, you could also use an energy comparison service to help find a better deal. Plus, with such a service, you’ll be able to see just how much you can save when you do switch.

Many households will ‘end up paying more than they should’

The comparison site’s analysis also revealed that if customers do not switch when their fixed tariffs end, the UK’s energy companies will benefit from what it calls an ‘inertia windfall’. This is because rolling fixed term deals onto default tariffs would collectively cost the affected households an extra £61 million a year, compared to their current energy costs.

Peter Earl, the Head of Energy at comparethemarket.com offered his thoughts on the situation and again stressed to consumers the importance of switching: “Each month hundreds of thousands of households risk falling onto a standard variable tariff which means many end up paying more than they should do.

“Energy companies are the only ones to benefit. The good news is that customers do not have to take these price increases lying down. It takes very little time to put your details in and find a new deal that could potentially save you hundreds of pounds.”

How to switch to a better deal

To switch, you can either contact your current supplier directly to find out if they have any better deals available, or you can use an energy price comparison service. With the latter, you will be able to see what the best energy deals are in your area right now. You can also see how much you’ll save by switching and you can even filter the different tariffs by the specific features you prefer.

Invariably, you’ll also find that you can secure a much cheaper tariff this way and these deals are usually offered by some of the best energy suppliers on the market right now.

What’s important is that those on the affected tariffs take action now while they still have time. However, switching your supplier to a better tariff can also be done if you simply fancy a change, whether your existing deal is coming to an end or not.

Find the best energy deal for your homeSave money now

Find the best energy deal for your home
TechRadar has partnered with MoneySupermarket to help you find the best energy deals in your area. Our energy comparison tool takes less than five minutes to use, and could save you hundreds on your energy bills. Save money now

Richard Hart

Rich is a freelance copywriter and content strategist with over 10 years' experience. His career has seen him work in-house and in various agencies, producing online and offline content marketing campaigns and copywriting for clients in the energy industry.