There has been an increase in the number of pre-payment meters used by UK homeowners in response to price rises from energy suppliers over the past year.
According to a Guardian report, figures from National Energy Action reveal that there are nearly 20 per cent more pre-payment electricity meters and six per cent more for gas, as energy suppliers have responded to consumers falling behind with their payments.
Households using pre-payment meters often pay around £215 more each year than customers who pay by direct debit or through other means, despite the fact that they are more likely to be living in fuel poverty.
A spokeswoman for Citizens Advice told the paper: "We would urge companies to treat customers in arrears fairly and look at ways to make the payments manageable."
Homeowners who are unhappy with their existing arrangements can choose to switch energy supplier in a bid to pursue cheap energy rates.
More than five million households in the UK are thought to be living in fuel poverty.
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