By Daniel Hunter

A new scheme being launched today (Wednesday) by the Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg promises to help families cut their bills by up to £100.

There are calls, however, for more to be done to protect the hardest hit from descending into fuel poverty.

Under the new initiative, brought about by a deal with the big six energy companies, households will receive a letter each year informing them of the best tariffs available. It will also give them the opportunity to switch to the cheaper rate if they choose to.

“This can only be good news for the many households across the UK that are struggling unnecessarily with high energy bills, many of whom are crippled by fuel poverty," Danny Jatania, chairman and CEO of Pockit, said.

"The energy market is notoriously complicated, making it too difficult to track down the cheapest deals. Energy users are swamped by an endless amount of tariffs so even those who want to make comparisons are left with a difficult task.

“Although customers will be informed of lower tariffs, the energy prices themselves are not falling and that is what is concerning. We still need to address the underlying causes of high energy bills with more effective ways of subsiding power for the poorest families.

“Customers have long needed the tools to take control of the way they are paying for energy. As well as looking for lower rates, households should also proactively search for cashback deals and other incentives to avoid the pressures of rising costs.

"Smart meters should also be combined with energy efficiency measures such as roof insulation and cavity wall insulation to reduce costs. Quite often, more attractive deals can be discovered by looking outside of the ‘big six’ energy companies so smaller companies should be factored into any search as well.”

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