Which regions in England are spending the most on energy bills?

With home energy bills continuing to rise, we decided to investigate which regions in England have been spending the most on heating and energy historically compared to average winter temperatures, as well as trying to find out how this could correlate to energy efficiency ratings in England’s homes.

To do so, we analysed ONS data on household utility spending and Met Office data on average winter temperatures per region, paired with additional ONS data on average energy efficiency ratings (EPC) per area. As part of our research, we also surveyed 2,000 Brits to find out more about attitudes towards energy-efficient solutions, amid Government plans to reach Net Zero by 2050 pushing UK residents to “think green”.

The data has shown that households in the South East spent the most on average, forking out £1,269 on energy bills, followed closely by those in the North West (£1,232 on average), and those in the South West and East of England, who spent an average of £1,227.  Respectively, households in these regions spent 5%, 2.1% and 1.7% more than the mean energy bill figure in England, which stood at £1,206 per year.

Regions that spent the most on their energy bills

Yearly average energy bill

Average winter temperature range (past 5 years)

1.South East

£1,269

 

4.7 - 7.2 °C

 

2.North West

£1,232

3.7 - 5.8 °C

3.South West

 

£1,227

 

4.9 - 10.4 °C

 

3.East of England

 

£1,227

 

5.1 - 6.8 °C

 

This is despite three out of four of these regions experiencing relatively mild winters recently, with average temperatures ranging from 4.7°C to 7.2°C in the South East, from 4.9°C to 10.4°C in the South West and from 5.1°C to 6.8°C in the East of England in the past five years.

In contrast, households in Yorkshire and the Humber spent the least in recent years, with the average energy bill amounting to £1,115 per year. Households in the North East and London closely followed, spending a yearly average of £1,141 and £1,191 respectively.

This may be surprising given that Yorkshire and the Humber and the North East both experienced harsher average winter temperatures compared to other areas of the country.

Top 3 Regions that spend the least on their energy bills 

Yearly average energy bill 

Average winter temperature range (past 5 years)  

Yorkshire and the Humber 

£1,115

3.3 – 5.4 °C

North East 

£1,141 

3.3 – 5.4 °C

London

£1,191 

4.7 – 7.2  °C

How can Brits reduce their energy bills by improving their homes’ energy efficiency?

We also surveyed 2,000 UK residents in December 2021 to investigate the nation’s attitude towards green energy solutions.

With the current energy price hike causing concern, many across the country have decided to take a step towards energy-efficiency, with our previous study from November 2021 showing that one in five (19%) have been looking to adopt smart heating solutions amid energy bills concerns. 

However, our latest survey revealed just 6% have been able to switch to “greener” solutions so far, while over four in ten (43%) would like to but believe they can’t afford to. 

The Government is taking measures to make green solutions more affordable to homeowners, though. For example, the 3-year Boiler Upgrade Scheme, beginning April 2022, will provide grants of £5,000 to help homeowners install more efficient and sustainable heating systems. According to the Government website, these grants will make installing a heat pump cost a similar amount to installing a traditional gas boiler.

Aside from the financial aspect, one of the reasons why the nation is transitioning towards green energy so slowly could be due to a lack of understanding, as one in eight (12%) say they lack overall knowledge of green alternatives. A further 24% admit they don’t know which energy-efficient solutions would be best for their homes. 

If you are wondering which energy efficient solutions would benefit your home, you can click here to get personalised advice from this government-endorsed calculator. You can also check here to see whether you’re eligible for any local grants to help you invest in greener energy solutions. 

How much greener must homes get for us to reach Net Zero?

Improving home energy efficiency is considered crucial to reaching the government’s Net Zero target by 2050, as homes currently account for 21% of the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions. One reason for the UK’s poor home efficiency could be that, according to a government housing consultation, UK housing stock is much older than that of the rest of Europe.

Government regulations could require all homes to reach EPC Band C by 2035. However, according to ONS data on energy efficiency ratings, the median energy score in England is currently standing at 66, which classifies as Band D. Even London homes, which at present are the most energy-efficient on average, have an EPC score of 68, which is also classed as Band D.  

The regions with the least energy-efficient housing on average are currently the West Midlands (average EPC of 65), Yorkshire and the Humber (65) and the South West (66).  

However, good progress has already been made in terms of the efficiency of privately rented homes. The 2019-2020 English Housing Survey found that the number of private rented homes in EPC bands A to C in 2019 was up 13% in 2020 versus 2009, with 38% of all private rental homes falling into this category. 

How can we reduce our carbon footprint?

We asked Shawn Coles, Founder of Net Zero Week, to provide expert insights on ways homeowners and renters can reduce the carbon footprint of their home energy and also potentially reduce their bills.

Ask for a green tariff 

The single biggest climate action everyone can take at home is to contact your energy supplier and ask for a green tariff. All energy suppliers now offer green electricity tariffs and many now also offer green gas. The important thing about this action is that your home will not be adding any carbon emissions to our shared environment, and both homeowners and renters can do this (under consumer protection law renters are legally allowed to change tariff and even supplier).

Switch to more energy efficient solutions

The biggest energy savings for homeowners will come through spending less on heating your home by updating an old boiler. Detached homes will save the biggest amount at around £400 annually. The second biggest win will come through insulating your home – costs and options vary so you should seek professional help. You could also look at updating your radiators as the latest radiators are up to 50% more efficient than those made 20+ years ago. 

Keep an eye on consumption 

Further actions are based on energy efficiency. Using less simply means lowering your energy bills and emissions. Even if you are on a green tariff, you will still save money by using less energy. So, win-win. 

When used with green electricity generated from sustainable energy sources, electric radiators are an entirely carbon free heating system. Read up on our FAQs and get a free quote today to see if electric radiators could be the right green heating solution for your home.

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