Overpaying on gas or electricity bills has been identified as one of the biggest unnecessary drains on Brits’ finances.
A new study has revealed how forgotten direct debit payments and unwanted subscriptions are amongst the biggest ‘money leaks’ faced by consumers.
The research found that direct debit payments on gas and electricity bills are the biggest unnecessary drain on finances, as people set up payments and then forget about them.
This means that the same amount is being paid each month, even if a household’s energy usage goes down.
Claire Peate, customer insight manager from Gocompare.com, which carried out the research, said that homeowners should keep tabs on all their direct debit payments.
“While direct debits are a convenient way to settle bills, if not regularly reviewed and managed they can lead to some accounts, such as utility bills, being overpaid while smaller payments for things like unwanted club memberships can be easily overlooked,” she said.
“If you pay your gas or electricity by direct debit, you can check whether the level has been set too high by checking your meter reading against your bill. If your account is in surplus after your bigger winter bills you should ask for the overpayment to be refunded to your account.”
Phone bills are another ‘money drain’ on finances, with 39% of respondents saying that they use direct debit to pay off their bill.
Despite many of people overpaying on monthly bills, the research also found that lots of Brits are not saving money by switching services.
“A regular spring clean of your finances to make sure that you are getting the best deals on your insurances, energy and other bills can plug significant leaks in your finances,” added Ms Peate.