Martin Lewis has been the go-to man for money-saving advice for 20 years, however, following the October energy price cap announcement, he has said he is ‘out of tools’ and ‘people will die’.
On Friday morning energy regulator Ofgem announced that the energy price cap was due to rise by another 80 per cent in October. Speaking on BBC Breakfast (opens in new tab)Martin Lewis stressed that we are now at the point where government intervention is required, as the increase in energy prices has gone beyond even his money-saving abilities.
‘I am seeing such terrible panic out there from people saying how am I going to pay my bills,’ he told presenter Charlie Stayt. ‘I am begging, and pleading that there is more government help for this winter so that people will not, and this is not catastrophising, this is a catastrophe, that people will not die because of it this winter.
‘Some people are going to have massive health problems because they don’t have heating in their home.
‘I said 6 months ago, maybe a little less that I was out of tools to help the most vulnerable on energy, and government help is needed and you’re asking me a question and I’ve been the Money Saving Expert for 20 years and I don’t have an answer,’ Martin Lewis said. ‘I don’t have an answer because the isn’t one, that is why we’re desperately in need of some government intervention.’
He pointed out that he is not the only one calling for government intervention to protect families from a devastating winter. In July trade associations such as Energy UK called for the government to look again at actions that could reduce customer bills. Even Ofgem, who sets the energy price cap, has urged the government to act now.
From October, the typical household energy bill will hit £3,549 a year announced Ofgem. On average the price of electricity will rise from 28p per kWh to 52p, and gas will go up from 7p to 15p per kWh.
Many companies are offering grants and other support to help the most vulnerable customers. The National Grid ESO are also set to announce plans to give household electricity bill discounts if they cut usage at peak times.
However, Martin Lewis warns that the secondary symptom of the announcement will be people’s mental health. ‘The mental health catastrophe that is it causing for not having an answer and not having firm plans in place on the day that this price gap is announced is a secondary symptom and catastrophe,’ he warned.
‘I chair the Money and Mental Health policy institute, finance and mental health are so closely linked. To allow people to stare into the pit of financial doom that is coming this winter without offering them the torch at the end of the tunnel, and saying help will come without being specific is terrible for people’s mental health.’
When pressed for energy advice, Martin Lewis said he didn’t know what to say anymore and instead said: ‘Talk to you MP and let us beg, plead and pray that the new PM when they’re coming, get on this and get on this quickly, and help save lives because we’re in that type of emergency.’