The energy regulator, Ofgem, says the average dual fuel bill for gas and electricity is almost £1400 a year.
A campaign group is calling on the Government to spend far more money on making our homes more energy efficient.
Derek Proud has been speaking to Dawn Keightley from Durham based Four Housing Group and Jenny Holland from the campaign group Energy Bill Revolution.
On tonight's Around The House from Westminster, Northumberland MPs Ian Lavery and Guy Opperman discuss fuel poverty and the deaths related to illnesses caused by living in cold homes:
You can see the full debate on Around The House with Helen Ford, tonight (Thursday 16 January) at 11.35pm on ITV.
Older people living in fuel poverty in County Durham will benefit from a £364,000 grant awarded to a free service providing energy saving guidance and financial advice.
Managing Money Better helps people heat their homes efficiently and cost-effectively and advises them on how to remain debt free.
One in five older people now live below the poverty line and many lack access to good, independent financial advice.
The project has been awarded the cash by Comic Relief.
Customers are visited by one of the project's energy co-ordinators to carry out a household MOT and welfare advice is also given to ensure older people are claiming the benefits they are entitled to.
Around 300,000 more homes are likely to have been pushed into "fuel poverty" by Christmas, a campaign group has warned.
The Fuel Poverty Advisory Group says six million people are now struggling to pay their energy bills.
It comes as the industry regulator Ofgem announced a multi-billion pound network upgrade, adding yet more to the bill of every consumer.
Stephen Douglas reports: