Hard-up families are ­paying up to THREE TIMES as much for essential household appliances, a Sunday Mirror invest­igation has discovered.

We found rent-to-own companies, often the last resort of households with poor credit histories, charging £1,302 for a £349 tumble dryer and £2,850 for a £1,149 telly.

Charities estimate 14million Brits rely on rent-to-own companies such as Brighthouse and Buy As You View to get goods such as fridges and washing machines.

But our investigation found how the poorest are hit with exorbitant interest rates of almost 70 per cent.

Last night Labour MP Nick Smith called for a cap on the repayment charges, saying: “Rent-to-own firms advertise themselves as an affordable alternative for household goods.

The high interest plans are often the last resort for many households

“However their eye-watering interest rates mean the total cost for families is staggering.

“This important investigation by the Sunday Mirror confirms this is a national problem.”

Our probe compared the price of essential household appliances at Brighthouse, Perfect Home, Buy As You View and Home Buy to monthly credit agreements on the high street over the same period.

A Beko electric oven costs £321.36 with Appliances Direct over 24 months.

The same appliance with Buy As You View costs almost three times as much at £930.80. And that oven costs just £259 when bought outright at Very.