- Press Release
Survey on electricity costs and savings during the COVID-19 pandemic: utilities are no.1 expense that has increased and that customers are looking to save on
ENECHANGE Ltd. (Head office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, CEO: Yohei Kiguchi, COO: Ippei Arita) conducted a survey on Electricity Bills and Savings in the COVID-19″ among subscribers to our electricity and gas comparison website ENECHANGE’s newsletter. Due to the spread of COVID-19, time spent at home is increasing. We found that an increasing number of households are paying higher utility and food costs as a result.
- 70% of respondents reported that their electricity bills were higher than before COVID-19.
- Many respondents cited “increased time spent using heating/cooling equipment” as the reason for higher electricity bills.
- About 49% of respondents answered that they are able to not cover the increased expenses due to remote work and the associated benefits offered by their company.
- The highest expense item due to remote work was “utilities” (70%).
- Utilities was the no. 1 expense item that respondents would like to reduce in the future (46%) .
70% of respondents reported that their electricity bills were higher than before COVID-19
In response to the question, “Has the spread of the COVID-19 changed your electricity bills?”, 70% said they had become more expensive. Only 28.6% responded “no change” and 1.4% responded “cheaper”.
Are the higher electricity bills due to the increase in time spent at home?
In response to the question“What is the reason for the higher electricity bill?”, the most popular answers were “increased time spent using heating and cooling equipment” (91%),“increased time spent using lighting” (52%), “spend more time on the computer” (44%), “increased TV viewing time” (34%), and“increased frequency of household chores” (29%). The increase in the amount of time spent at home seems to have led to an increase in the amount of time spent using home appliances and lighting. In other responses, several respondents answered “because the price of my electricity tariff was raised”.
Remote work benefits do not cover expenses
In response to the question, “Does your company offer remote work?”39% answered in the affirmative. 40% responded in the negative, while 22% responded that they were not an office worker or were not working. Excluding this latter group we can see that nearly half of respondents have the opportunity to work remotely, suggesting that work-at-home is popular to a certain extent.
Regarding remote work benefits or equivalent benefits, 76% of respondents answered that they are not provided and 24% answered that they are provided.The most common amount paid was “3,000-4,999 yen” (22%), followed by “999 yen or less” (19%). When asked if the costs incurred from remote work are covered by allowances provided by the company, the most common responses were “not covered” (49%) and “undecided” (39%), with only an eighth of respondents replying that their costs were “covered” (12%). Even those companies that have introduced allowances generally do not seem to fully cover the costs incurred by remote work.
The highest cost incurred due to remote work was “utilities”
In response to the question“What are the highest general expenses that have increased as a result of remote work?”,the most popular answers were “utilities” (70%),“food costs” (16%), and“communication costs” (2%). In response to“What is the cheapest expense that you have cut back on as a result of remote work?”, the most popular answers were “transportation cost” (34%),“hobbies and recreational cost” (21%), and“clothing and beauty cost” (15%).
Utilities were the no. 1 cost that respondents wanted to reduce in the future .
When asked about costs respondents would like to reduce in the future, the top answer was “utilities” (46%), followed by “food cost” (13%), and“communication cost” (9%). The top 3 expenses are those perceived to be the most expensive as a result of remote work. All of these expenses are familiar to respondents and may therefore be seen as things they can seek to make savings in.
Survey method: Online questionnaire, sent to recipients of our ENECHANGE newsletter
Survey period: February 11-18, 2022
Number of respondents: 759
Comments from Ippei Arita, Representative Director and COO of ENECHANGE Ltd.
We have found that the amount of time spent at home has increased due to the spread of the COVID-19, resulting in a trend toward higher expenditures for electricity and other utilities. In addition to this, electricity bills have been on the rise since last year due to soaring import prices of coal and liquefied natural gas (LNG), which are fuels for thermal power generation. There is a growing need to review electric power companies and plans to save money on electricity bills.
About ENECHANGE Ltd.
ENECHANGE is an energy technology company that promotes a carbon-free society through digital technology with the mission of Changing Energy For A Better World. We offer services based on data utilization in the field of the 4Ds of Energy: Deregulation, Digitalization, Decarbonization, and Decentralization. Our company’s roots come from an energy data lab at the University of Cambridge, U.K., a country where liberalization is mature. ENECHANGE has a British subsidiary, SMAP Energy Limited, as well as a global network and analytical technology for energy data.
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