Help to Turn Up the Heat
As energy prices spiral, most older people are worried about paying their energy bills now and in the months to come. Even before energy prices rose considerably last year, Age Scotland research found that these bills were cited as the biggest concern for older people who identified as feeling financially squeezed.
Due to rising costs, more and more older people will be unable to afford to keep their homes warm and will be faced with making difficult choices to balance their household budgets. The situation is already urgent for many households, including the 218,000 older Scottish households estimated to be in fuel poverty, and it looks set to get worse as a result of the 54% rise in the energy price cap due from April.
Without major interventions, rising energy bills, surging inflation and increased costs of living will push many more older households into fuel poverty, poorer health and financial insecurity.
The impact of rapidly rising energy bills on older people in Scotland
94% of over 50s are worried about their energy bills
In January 2022, Age Scotland carried out a snap survey of older people to find out more about how the energy crisis will impact them. Of the 331 people who responded, 94% reported that they were worried about the cost of their energy bills.
There were 223 older people who shared further detailed information about their experiences and set out in their own words how the rise in prices will affect their daily lives and their worries for the future.
By sharing their words in this report, we hope that the Scottish and UK governments and local authorities gain a deeper understanding of the scale of the crisis facing people over 50 in Scotland.
I am living in my living room because I cannot afford to heat the rest of the house.
I live alone and afraid to put heating up to increase bills.