Smart meters to cost £11bn: Now that’s a lot of electricity!


Oct 10, 2014
Smart meters to cost £11bn: Now that’s a lot of electricity!

The good news is that the Government has pledged that we will all receive a Smart Meter to help us save energy and of course money by 2020; the bad news is that consumers will have to pay for the programme; a cost that is reported to be in the region of a whopping £11bn.

Taking up the mantle, consumer group Which? has written to Energy Secretary Ed Davey making it clear in no uncertain terms that this huge bill must be cut in order to avoid things spiralling out of control; adding fuel to an already very hot and smoky fire!

Smart meters enable households to track their energy consumption in real time; a powerful tool when it comes to helping families understand which appliances are using the most electricity, educating them on how they can use their energy more effectively.

Of course one of the biggest ways you can save money on your energy bills is by switching energy supplier; a process that takes a few minutes but could save you hundreds of pounds. Then you can use your smart meter to help you use your appliances and ultimately your energy supply in the most effective way. 

Speaking of their concerns, Which? executive director, Richard Lloyd, said: 'Without immediate action the cost of the smart meter roll-out is in danger of spiralling out of control, while consumers foot the bill. The energy market is undergoing a full scale investigation, so the government cannot expect competition alone will keep costs low.

Major reforms are needed to fix the Big Six and restore trust in this broken market. At a time when energy bills continue to squeeze household budgets, the Government must urgently explore ways to ensure consumers get value for money from the smart meter roll-out.”Switching Energy Supplier

The government has estimated that households are expected to save between 2% and 3% on their energy bills with a smart meter; personally though I think that seems rather low and the reality will be significantly higher. You shouldn’t wait to get your smart meter in order to save money though as you could save as £300 by switching energy supplier online today. 

Let’s hope that the government listens to the consumer watchdog Which? and implements a more co-ordinated approach across all suppliers, leveraging the massive collective buying power of smart meters; after all isn’t it about time we had a good news energy story?


Ashley Shepherd is an Over 50s Personal Finance Expert

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