Rightmove plc

04/02/2024 | News release | Distributed by Public on 04/02/2024 06:58

What’s the average UK energy bill and how can I save money

Whether it's to lower your energy bills or to reduce your carbon footprint, most of us are thinking about how we can make greener choices at home.

Energy use and how much carbon a home emits are measured in each property's Energy Performance Certificate, ranked in bandings from A to G.

How much areenergybills right now?

Well, our latest analysis of properties that have recently been listedfor sale and to rent shows that the greener a home is, the lower the average annual energy bill will be:

Rightmove's energy bill tracker

Property type EPC rating B EPC rating C EPC rating D EPC rating E EPC rating F EPC rating G
1-bed flat £645 £987 £1,514 £2,297 £3,778 £4,649
2-bed flat £845 £1,270 £1,861 £2,698 £4,741 £4,737
3-bed terraced house £1,395 £1,507 £2,034 £2,940 £4,579 £7,510
3-bed semi-detached house £1,187 £1,539 £2,041 £2,804 £4,088 £6,279
3-bed detached house £1,193 £1,714 £2,376 £3,252 £4,790 £9,143
4-bed semi-detached house £1,393 £1,876 £2,648 £3,833 £6,211 £8,512
4-bed detached house £1,440 £2,280 £2,900 £3,955 £5,645 £10,130

These calculations are an average only, and are based on information fromover 250,000EPCs that were created from November 2023 to January 2024, across each property size and EPC bands B-G. A-rated properties have been excluded from the calculations due to low volumes.

Where can I check the average energy bill for a property?

Within a home's Energy Performance Certificate, you'll find an estimated annual bill for heating, lighting and hot water. It's a calculation based on the property's condition at the time of the assessment. So, for example, if older single-glazed windows have been replaced with new double glazing since the certificate was created, this wouldn't be factored in until a new certificate was produced.

You'll usually find a list of recommended home improvements within the certificate, too. Including how many points they'dlikely addto your energy-efficiency score, as well as how much you could expect to save onyour bills.  

How much energy a household uses will vary based on lifestyle, the number of people living there, and how energy efficient your property is to begin with.  

Why do homes with higher EPC ratings have lower average energy bills?

A greener home is one that is more energy efficient to run, which means it uses less energy to perform the same task as a more inefficient home.

Homes with lower energy-efficiency ratings will require much more power to keep them warm, and well lit. Which is why they have higher energy bills, and higher carbon emissions, on average.

Many homes in the UK were built decades or even hundreds of years ago with older materials and technology, which is why the average UK rating is a D.

Making changes that make your home greener can not only save you money on bills, they also help to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide that a home emits.

Right now, Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures show that around a quarter (26%) of UK greenhouse gas emissions come from our homes.

How can I save money on my energy bills?​

There are lots of small things you can do to help reduce your energy usage at home. And, doing them all at once can result in a significant reduction in your energy bills. There are changes you can make that come with no or low costs, that could make a noticeable difference in the long term.  

These include things like adjusting your combi-boiler flow temperature, closing curtains and blinds, or applying for a smart meter, if you don't have one already.  

Read more about how to reduce your energy usage

And there are other energy-saving improvements to consider, too. Such as looking into getting a smart thermostat, or checking whether your home could benefit from improved insulation. 

Is there any support in place to help with energy bills?

Due to the sharp rise in energy bills through 2022 and 2023, the government made financial support available to all households. And while this same level of support is no longer in place, certain groups may be eligible for government support with energy bills.  

Find out more about some of the grants and schemesavailable to households.  

How can I make my home more energy efficient?​

If you're looking at making bigger changes to make your home greener, you might be considering changes like solar panels, triple glazing, insulation, or a heat pump. These changes are often the suggested improvements you'll find on an energy performance certificate, so investing in them could also raise your home's energy rating.  

While costs continue to be a barrier to households making these changes, the initial costs can be outweighed by the long-term benefits, which include:  

A lower carbon footprint:

  • Decarbonsing your home's heat source, or reducing its reliance on fossil fuel heating, will reduce your home's emissions   

Reduced energy usage:

  • Our energy-saving guidesdetail the cost of making changes, and the savings you can expect to see on your bills 

A 'green premium' that could increase your home's value:

  • Our analysis shows that sellers who've improved their EPC rating from F up to a C could see an average house price increase of almost £56,000, on top of local house price growth (Rightmove Greener Homes Report 2023). If you're curious about your home's value, get an Instant Valuationto see an estimate in seconds  

There are grants and schemes in place such as the Great British Insulation Scheme, and the Boiler Upgrade Scheme, which can help with a portion of the cost of green improvements.   

When will energy bills come down?

In February 2024, Ofgem announced that the energy price cap would fall by 12% from April 2024, to £1,690.

According to Cornwall Insights - an organisation that predicts what will happen to energy bills - energy prices are set to continue to fall throughout the year, but could rise as we head into winter.

However, future price cap forecasts could change. This is because the price of wholesale gas can be affected by global events, which in turn impact the energy market.

Frequently Asked Questions: Your questions about energy usage and costs answered

What does a unit of energy cost right now?

The wholesale price of gas can go up and down, which means the underlying costs energy suppliers need to cover can change. So, to prevent companies from passing on large price rises to consumers - particularly the kind of hikes we've seen in recent years - the energy price capis in place. The cap is set by energy regulator Ofgem: an independent organisation that works to ensure energy customers are treated fairly.  

The price cap amount takes into account any increases in wholesale prices, but does so in a proportionate way. The figures in the table below shows the maximum amount energy companies are able to charge customers, per unit, for the length of time the price cap is in place.   

Oct-Dec 2023 Jan-Mar 2024 Apr-Jun 2024
Gas 7p per kWh 7p per kWh 6p per kWh
Electricity 27p per kWh 29p per kWh 25p per kWh

Source: Ofgem. Based on average rates for direct debit users, which vary by region

What's the energy price cap and how will it affect what I pay?

The energy price cap was set up in 2019, to limit the effects of rising energy costs on households. From January to March 2024, the energy price cap was set at £1,928, up from £1,834 in October to December 2023, as a result of rising wholesale gas prices. From April to June 2024, the price cap has fallen by £238, to £1,690.This takes average energy bills to their lowest level since mid 2022.

The regulator Ofgem sets the price cap, and it's reviewed every three months.  

The dates of the price cap announcements, and the periods the updated price cap will cover are:  

  • 1 July to 30 September 2024 level, announced by 28 May 2024  
  • 1 October to 31 December 2024 level, announced by 27 August 2024
  • 1 January to 31 March 2025, announced by 25 November 2024

How much power does a typical household use

Ofgem has outlined how much power you might expect to use based on the size of your property, and the number of people living in it. 

Energy is calculated in kilowatt hours, often called 'units', and it's estimated that a typical household in England, Scotland and Wales will use around 2,700 kwh of electricity and 11,500 kWh of gas each year. Right now, gas is significantly cheaper than electricity per unit. Typically, gas will account for around 80% of a home's energy usage, largely due to households' current reliance on gas boilers.  

Typical energy usage (property type and size) Average annual electricity consumption Average annual gas consumption
Low (flat or 1-bedroom house/1-2 people) 1,800 kWh 7,500 kWh
Medium (3-bedroom house/2-3 people) 2,700 kWh 11,500 kWh
High (5-bedroom house/4-5 people) 4,100 kWh 17,000 kWh

Source: Ofgem

To give you an idea of how different appliances contribute to your overall consumption, this is the amount of power you can expect each of these common household appliances to use, on average:

  • A 100-watt light bulb uses 1 kwh for every 10 hours of use
  • A fridge-freezer uses 1 kwh for every 26 hours of use
  • An electric oven uses 1 kwh for every 15 minutes of use
  • A tumble dryer uses 4.5 kwh per cycle

More energy-saving guides:

READ MORE: What the energy price cap change means for energy bills