Ian McCaig issued the stark warning as he said energy policies must be reviewed to minimise the impact on bills and said consumers should think about turning down their heating to reduce costs. Critics have said that the Government’s environmental policies on windfarms and energy efficiency schemes, for example, are adding unnecessarily to the cost of bills.
“If things continue as they are, or even get worse, for some consumers in some parts of the country we will see energy bills overtake many other bills we have traditionally thought were the biggest items of non-discretionary spend,” Mr McCaig said.
“In fact, given that interest rates are low and look like staying that way it could easily be the case that over the next five to 10 years we’ll see energy bills even overtake mortgage costs for some consumers.”
Analysis by First Utility shows that UK dual-fuel bills have risen by an average of 8.5pc a year over the last five years to reach current levels of £1,420.
If they keep rising at the same rate, then by 2025 they would reach £3,761 – higher than current average annual mortgage repayments in places such as Stoke-on-Trent and higher than average repayments in Liverpool by 2029.
Energy bills 'could overtake mortgages in five years’