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Four and a half million households in fuel poverty this month

Tahmina Mannan
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Tahmina Mannan

Nearly 4.5m households across the country are in fuel poverty this month, making this a small rise since October last year.

According to research by Legal and General’s MoneyMood survey, there are big changes according to results by region.

The number of homes in fuel poverty has risen significantly since October in the East Midlands (up 52%), the South West (up 50%), Scotland (up 35%), South East (up 21%), the North East (up 20%) and Wales (up 10%).

The biggest falls in the number of households saying they are in fuel poverty are in East Anglia (down 46%) and London (down 38%).

Mark Gregory, CEO at L&G Savings, said: “In its inflation report for December the ONS stated increases in gas and electricity bills were one of the main upward pressures on prices.

Several parts of the country have shown a significant rise in the number of homes who now say they are in fuel poverty. The highest percentage, with 1 in 3 households who say they are in fuel poverty is Wales, making this region the worst affected so far.

We believe the cost of fuel is already making balancing household finances even harder for those with lower incomes.

Any further rise in the amount spent on fuel is likely to have a significant impact on how the less well-off households cope with paying bills. We will be monitoring this through the winter to see whether the fuel poverty situation changes.

The Government states that households who spend more than 10% of their income on gas and electricity are classified as in ‘fuel poverty’.