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Credit card charges: Energy price increases push thousands into fuel poverty

When energy companies push up their prices by one per cent, an extra 40,000 British households are pushed into fuel poverty, according to a leading expert.

Sarah Wright, senior campaigns and communications officer at National Energy Action (NEA), explained that the elderly are particularly at risk.

Not only can this leave these individuals in fuel poverty out of pocket, but it could lead to credit card charges through missed payments.

In addition, she added, older people may choose to limit the amount of energy they use to save money, but living in a cold house can lead to or exacerbate a range of health conditions, including strokes, heart attacks and bronchitis.

"It is really important that you do all you can to ensure that your home is as energy-efficient as possible," said Ms Wright.

"The government's Warm Front scheme provides grants to help with the costs of heating and insulation measures for low-income households."

She warns that it ends in March 2013, so it is important to act now to avoid missing out.

Government statistics suggest that there are 3.5 million households in fuel poverty and another 5.3 million classed as fuel-poor.

Amir Hussain

Amir specialises in personal loans, consumer debt and debt management.ADNFCR-2776-ID-801483754-ADNFCR

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