Already-struggling Britons face paying energy bills of £400-a-month from next year as the price cap is predicted to rise even higher.
It is feared the annual limit set by regulators could climb to a terrifying £4,700 by April next year.
It’s equivalent to £391 per month, and will only add to the pain many struggling households are facing.
Family’s annual outgoings including energy, mortgage payments and food bills could rise by £6,000 by December compared to last year due to rampant inflation.
Energy consultancy Auxilione predicted the price cap on energy bills could reach £3,687 in October, close to double today’s already record levels.
It is thought to be the worst outlook yet for the 24 million households whose fees are governed by the limit, with even more rises expected in 2023.
Auxilione added the cap may reach around £4,400 in January – though said it wasn’t certain.
The consultancy said it was double-checking its figures due to price cap rule changes made by industry regulator Ofgem.
It added: ‘We release today’s view with a caveat that we are having to re-do our analysis this week to “double check” that the outputs are correct. Be sure to be sitting down before reading on.’
If true that the price could swell to £4,700 in April it would mean a price cap more than four times higher than before the gas price crisis hit in 2021.
Falls are not set to happen until July, when the price cap may dip to £4,000. But that would still leave it at double current levels.
Auxilione said: ‘On Thursday Ofgem released their final models including some changes to allowances within the cap, such as recovering some of these over a shorter period of time.
‘Having now analysed these has left us wondering if these are showing the correct outputs.
‘Over the last 24 hours we have been comparing our values with other analysts who also seem to be in the same position as us – in disbelief at the values.’
A leading charity warned at the end of June around seven million families in Britain are living through a ‘frightening year of financial fear’ and have gone without food, heating, toiletries and even showering in order to cope with the spiralling cost of living crisis.
The Josephy Rowntree Foundation added the depth of poverty facing low-income households is so severe more than two million households were no longer choosing between ‘heating or eating’ as because they had already gone without both.
It said many are also floundering deep in debt as they are living on credit cards and cash from loan sharks simply to pay for staples including groceries and electricity.
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