We have all heard the news of pensioners suffering an ever increasing fuel-poverty gap, and of these pensioners even having to shut off their lights and heating during the cold winter months in order to save money. This situation is particularly dangerous to the most vulnerable elderly people, who could suffer serious health problems by not staying warm enough during the winter.
Many pensioners, sadly, are paying much more for their electricity than they need to. The main reason for this situation is because even though there are plenty of energy comparison sites available online, many of these offers are directed more towards younger people or those with families. For the elderly, doing an electricity price comparison means they have to take into account many factors that younger people tend to ignore. In this article, we will look at what these factors are, and how pensioners can find the electricity deal that is best for them.
For many pensioners, stability is the most important thing they want from their electricity tariffs. These people would rather enjoy their retirement than have to worry about whether they are going to be paying more for their electricity next month. As such, pensioners should look for a fixed-rate electricity tariff. These tariffs will remain at the same rate for a certain amount of time (typically six months to two years), so pensioners can rest assured that they will always be paying the same rate on their electricity.
Furthermore, fixed-rate tariffs are becoming very competitive with variable-rate tariffs as energy companies have noticed an increased demand for fixed-rate prices.
Many energy suppliers know how difficult it can be for pensioners to keep up with their electricity bills. As a result, some energy providers are now offering pensioners a winter payment that will help mitigate the costs of keeping the electricity on during the winter. This winter payment usually takes the form of a discount off of a pensioner’s energy bill during the winter. The size of the payment varies depending on the company, the age of the consumer, and other factors. To find out if you are eligible for a winter payment, contact your electricity provider directly.
Energy bills are notoriously confusing to read, and this confusion can be particularly acute for the elderly. Being unable to read an energy bill keeps many pensioners from making the effort to switch energy providers. Many providers have responded to this problem by now offering pensioners much easier to read electricity statements. These statements cut back on a lot of the jargon found in standard bills so that you can easily find out what you are being charged, what discounts you may be receiving, and what your monthly balance is.
If you are a pensioner looking to switch energy providers, ask these energy providers whether they are able to offer simple-to-read electricity bills.
It is a sad fact that each winter the elderly in the UK suffer serious health issues because of the cold weather. If your heating is kept too low, then you could be at increased risk of hypothermia, heart attacks, and stroke, not to mention that it is just more uncomfortable having to live in a property that is not properly heated. Some energy companies are now offering their elderly customers free hypothermia monitors too make sure nobody suffers because of inadequate heating. A hypothermia monitor will monitor the temperature in your home and alert you if it is getting dangerously low.
Pensioner Energy Plans
Finally, many energy suppliers are now offering energy tariffs designed exclusively for pensioners. These tariffs should include all of the above mentioned features, and may even include other discounts, reward programs, and other features designed specifically for the elderly. To find out if an energy company offers special pensioner plans, you can either compare prices online, or, if you do not have access to a computer, you can call up energy companies directly in order to find out.
Nobody should have to choose between saving money and staying warm during the winter, but many pensioners are forced to make just such a decision every year in the UK. By learning how to do an electricity price comparison between the major energy suppliers, and finding out what these suppliers offer exclusively to their elderly customers, pensioners will no longer have to shut off the heating during the winter because of concerns over a high electricity bill at the end of the month.
License: Creative Commons
Laura Ginn appreciates that many pensioners worry about keeping the house warm during the winter months. The best way to find affordable companies is with an electricity price comparison. You can compare energy prices on uSwitch to make sure you are paying the lowest price possible.