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MSE News: Energy bills to rise a sickening 80% from October

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  • BUFFBUFF Forumite
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    HUMBUG said:
    There is nothing emotive in calling this a catastrophe if you are one of the many that are already in energy debt and are worrying about the future health and welfare of their children and elderly parents. 

    For example :
    My father has a tumour/cancer and needs to be kept warm all the time because he is just skin and bones. His only sources of income are his state pension and attendance allowance. It looks like the Oct 22  price cap will see a rise in his energy bill to £7.5k  which means he won't have enough yearly income to cover all the bills next year. I am also retired and live off my employee pension of 9k a year while having to cook and deliver food to my father every day. 

    Personally, it does feel like a catastrophic situation and it is making me feel sick.

    Have you investigated all funding example - e.g. attendance allowance for him/you?  Presumably he will be getting the £650+£400+ winter fuel etc?
    Do you only have an employee pension or are you also eligible for state pension?
  • edited 29 December 2022 at 6:45PM
    EssexHebrideanEssexHebridean Forumite
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    edited 29 December 2022 at 6:45PM
    People are worried, and yet somewhere like MSE (which should be trying to help the consumer) decides to use words like "sickening" and "catastrophic".  What words are you saving for January and April?
    Having seen the reaction of many truly desperate folk, particularly over on the DFW board, I think that they could accurately be summed up as seeing this situation as sickening. And when the decision has to be made about which of your other priority bills you pay short to allow you to meet the cost of heating your home, that does indeed feel pretty catastrophic to me. While taking a pragmatic approach, and encouraging people to think and plan ahead, budget, and understand the full nature of how these upcoming rises will affect them, I see little point in wrapping it in cotton wool and saying "there there, it'll all be fine" to be honest. For too many people "fine" is the last thing it will be. 

    If MSE were running tabloid style headlines along the lines of "millions will freeze in their beds this winter!" then I'd agree with the naysayers on this one. As it is though, I'd describe those words as honest, descriptive, and most importantly, aligned with the thinking of the average member of Joe/Jo public who might read them. 

    @HUMBUG I'm sorry to hear of your/your Dad's situation - a very good example of exactly the sort of situation we're seeing here more and more, and also underlining the point that you're already feeling sick - not doing so because MSE has "told you to!" (Which also, quite frankly, feels pretty patronising?)  Have you explored the possibility of the various cancer charities being able to offer financial support for your father in particular - and indeed also your energy suppliers who may have a hardship fund that you would be eligible for support from? Also have you checked that you are each in receipt of any benefits that you may be entitled to - it sounds as though your father should be able to apply for attendance allowance, for a start? 
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  • Max68Max68 Forumite
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    It is "sickening".  Friend of mine is in hospital after taking an overdose because he is in financial difficulty and this news pushed him over the edge.  An associate took his own life several weeks ago, apparently because he didn't know how he was going to be able to provide for his family.  These are two people who as far as we know no-one knew they were suffering.  The mental health side of this is going to be astronomical.  For sure the headlines from the media don't help but there isn't any other way of putting it, that this will be a catastrophe for many.  I can only say that if anyone is really suffering here please reach out to friends, family, anyone.  To see how these families have been destroyed is truly tragic.
  • Section62Section62 Forumite
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    Max68 said:
    It is "sickening".  Friend of mine is in hospital after taking an overdose because he is in financial difficulty and this news pushed him over the edge.  An associate took his own life several weeks ago, apparently because he didn't know how he was going to be able to provide for his family.  These are two people who as far as we know no-one knew they were suffering.  The mental health side of this is going to be astronomical.  For sure the headlines from the media don't help but there isn't any other way of putting it, that this will be a catastrophe for many.  I can only say that if anyone is really suffering here please reach out to friends, family, anyone.  To see how these families have been destroyed is truly tragic.
    There is, the media (and MSE in particular) could focus on what people can do to help control their bills, and what to do if it feels overwhelming.

    If someone is feeling suicidal (generally) you don't tell them "Yup, life is really rubbish and won't get better anytime soon".  You encourage them to search for positives and look to the future.

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  • People are worried.  Nobody is disputing that.  Nobody is saying that it is a good situation.

    People are looking to trusted sources like MSE for advice, understanding, and possibly even comfort. 

    They are then met by headlines that say it's all a catastrophe and they should feel sick about it.

    And still only Section62 and I seem to think that this is the wrong approach for MSE to take?
  • IBogdanIBogdan Forumite
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    Housing association tenants - cannot go green

    I live in Perth and Kinross, Scotland with my family and we rent 3 bedroom house from one of the Housing Association. 
    Due to the increased prices for electricity we offered ourself to get a loan and to pay for solar panels and a battery ( £11.000 ) 
    But no, we are not allowed. Just home owners or private tenants can do that and they also can get a free interest loan up to £5000 from Scottish government.... 
    What about us? I have no choice than to pay £6600/year from April? 
    My wife and eldest daughter has disabilities and their medical condition will get worse if I don't keep warm the house.
    I have no idea what to do....

  • edited 30 August 2022 at 5:12PM
    HUMBUGHUMBUG Forumite
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    edited 30 August 2022 at 5:12PM
    BUFF said:
    HUMBUG said:
    There is nothing emotive in calling this a catastrophe if you are one of the many that are already in energy debt and are worrying about the future health and welfare of their children and elderly parents. 

    For example :
    My father has a tumour/cancer and needs to be kept warm all the time because he is just skin and bones. His only sources of income are his state pension and attendance allowance. It looks like the Oct 22  price cap will see a rise in his energy bill to £7.5k  which means he won't have enough yearly income to cover all the bills next year. I am also retired and live off my employee pension of 9k a year while having to cook and deliver food to my father every day. 

    Personally, it does feel like a catastrophic situation and it is making me feel sick.

    Have you investigated all funding example - e.g. attendance allowance for him/you?  Presumably he will be getting the £650+£400+ winter fuel etc?
    Do you only have an employee pension or are you also eligible for state pension?
    My father has the old state pension and he get £52 per month from the Pension Protection Fund (ie. he used to work for Kodak Ltd whose pension fund failed).  He gets £372 approx for attendance allowance, while my sister keeps an eye on him 24 hours a day (she has no work income at all except interest from any savings). 

    I am 64 so will need to await another few years for my state pension.

    I don't think he will be getting the £650 because the acceptance criteria don't include people on attendance allowance.  He'll probably get £400 + £150 and hopefully £600 winter fuel allowance. He is no longer available for 'Warm Home Discount' because they've changed the conditions for being on that scheme.

     So, we are talking about an increase of £3.4k in his energy bills minus £1150 government help = £2.3 approx.  And if Ofgem are going to up the cap by another 50% next year, he will need to find a extra 1-2k (even if the government offer some partial help).

    My father's example is not as bad as others like single parent families or elderly sick people who are all alone and don't have any relatives to help them. This hurts everyone, even middle-income families who are stretched to the limit with high mortgages to pay.
  • edited 29 December 2022 at 6:45PM
    HUMBUGHUMBUG Forumite
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    edited 29 December 2022 at 6:45PM
    People are worried, and yet somewhere like MSE (which should be trying to help the consumer) decides to use words like "sickening" and "catastrophic".  What words are you saving for January and April?
    Having seen the reaction of many truly desperate folk, particularly over on the DFW board, I think that they could accurately be summed up as seeing this situation as sickening. And when the decision has to be made about which of your other priority bills you pay short to allow you to meet the cost of heating your home, that does indeed feel pretty catastrophic to me. While taking a pragmatic approach, and encouraging people to think and plan ahead, budget, and understand the full nature of how these upcoming rises will affect them, I see little point in wrapping it in cotton wool and saying "there there, it'll all be fine" to be honest. For too many people "fine" is the last thing it will be. 

    If MSE were running tabloid style headlines along the lines of "millions will freeze in their beds this winter!" then I'd agree with the naysayers on this one. As it is though, I'd describe those words as honest, descriptive, and most importantly, aligned with the thinking of the average member of Joe/Jo public who might read them. 

    @HUMBUG I'm sorry to hear of your/your Dad's situation - a very good example of exactly the sort of situation we're seeing here more and more, and also underlining the point that you're already feeling sick - not doing so because MSE has "told you to!" (Which also, quite frankly, feels pretty patronising?)  Have you explored the possibility of the various cancer charities being able to offer financial support for your father in particular - and indeed also your energy suppliers who may have a hardship fund that you would be eligible for support from? Also have you checked that you are each in receipt of any benefits that you may be entitled to - it sounds as though your father should be able to apply for attendance allowance, for a start? 
    Thanks for the advice as I haven't looked at cancer charities yet but in my humble opinion there are people worse off than my father who need their help. 'So Energy' is our supplier and I will check what criteria they use for applying for a hardship fund. My father already gets about £372 pm attendance allowance although I had to complete 30+ pages full of questions and make numerous calls and appeals to convince them to pay him anything. 
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