There’s still time to submit your energy meter reading to avoid a higher charge
You need to submit your gas and electricity readings as soon as possible to avoid overpaying after the October energy price increase.
To avoid being overcharged, households were advised to submit their meter readings before 1 October, when the new energy price cap guarantee came into effect.
Taking a meter reading before the unit rate went up made sense so as to avoid any energy that you used before then being charged at a higher price. However, if you took your meter reading but forgot or were unable to submit it, there is still time to submit your reading. But you don’t have long.
Bills will go up by around 27% for the typical user under the new Energy Price Guarantee (EPG). Set by new prime minister Liz Truss the EPG essentially replaces the energy price cap and freezes the unit price on energy until 2024. It means that from 1 October, the average household’s annual energy bill will be around £2,500 based on typical use. The average typical bill is around £1,971 under the current energy price cap.
Why you should submit your meter reading
If you took a meter reading before 1 October you should submit it before your supplier’s deadline to make sure you’re not overcharged based on their estimate.
If you pay by direct debit, suppliers estimate your usage – but they also estimate when it’s used. By taking a meter reading, you can be sure that they assign the expensive units from October’s usage only.
It’s generally a good idea to take meter readings down every month anyway, so that your direct debit is more accurate.
You don’t have to take a meter reading if you are on a fixed rate tariff or if you have a smart meter.
Which suppliers have extended their deadline to submit a meter reading?
Most energy suppliers extended their meter reading day deadline, here are the deadlines:
- British Gas – you have until 14 October to submit
- EDF – ACT FAST, the deadline is 7 October
- Octopus Energy will allow you to submit a reading up to a week after 1 October.
- Shell Energy customers can submit up to 30 days after 30 September
- SSE and Ovo Energy – there is no time limit, but you must submit their readings over the phone
The easiest way to do it is via your supplier’s website or app. You can also submit over the phone, however this might take longer as energy suppliers’ lines are often very busy.
What is the energy price guarantee?
The EPG sets the highest amount suppliers are allowed to charge per unit of energy used. So from 1 October the typical home will pay an estimated £2,500 a year for the next two years, based on average use – the amount you actually pay depends on how much you use.
If you’re on a standard variable tariff, average unit prices will go up to 34p per kWh of electricity from the current 28p, and gas will go from 7p per kWh to 10.3p – though be aware that prices do vary by region, payment method and meter type. Standing charges rise to an average of 46p a day for electricity and 28p a day for gas.
Additionally, the government announced the Energy Bill Support Scheme, a £400 energy bill discount that will kick in from 1 October and be spread out over the following six months, with monthly discounts of £66 in October and November, and then £67 from December to March. This grant does not have to be repaid and will be made via your energy supplier automatically.