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Households potentially facing significant energy price rises

14th September 2015


Energy bill-payers are being urged to start shopping around for a new deal as a number of fixed price tariffs come to an end this month.

Switching service Gocompare.com has warned that many households could be caught out by a £151.13 price jump when their deal comes to an end this month.

British Gas, Co-operative Energy, Extra Energy, First:Utility, iSupply, M&S Energy and Scottish Power all have tariffs that are due to expire on Wednesday 30 September, at which point customers who fail to find a new deal will be rolled onto their supplier’s standard variable tariff.

In 21 cases, the standard tariff is more expensive than the fixed deal that customers are currently on, and could result in an average price hike of £151.13, or 15.56%.

The biggest average increase across the UK could be felt by Extra Energy customers on the supplier’s ValuePlus Fixed Price Sept 2015 v1 tariff. People currently on this deal could see a £186.08, almost 20%, hike to the cost of their annual gas and electricity bill when their fixed term ends if they fail to switch to a better deal.

First:Utility customers in the Norweb distribution area, which includes Manchester, on the expiring iSave Fixed v27 September 2015 tariff could be the hardest hit by the automatic rollover, with rises of £312.51 if they let themselves be automatically switched onto the supplier’s iSave Everyday standardtariff instead of shopping around.

While the majority of tariffs ending will see customers’ bills rise, there are a few fixed tariffs expiring that are slightly more expensive than the suppliers’ standard variable tariffs. This means that some of the dual fuel tariffs expiring will result in customers’ bills dropping.

Gocompare.com noted however that this should not necessarily be welcomed as good news, as it merely indicates that those customers were paying more for their energy than necessary been during their fixed term.  Also, customers who may see cheaper energy bills when they are moved onto standard tariffs could save even more by switching to any one of the UK’s top 10 cheapest fixed deals.

Caroline Lloyd, of Gocompare.com said: “With a huge number of fixed tariffs coming to an end this month, it’s really important for customers to keep on top of when their deals expire and ensure they’re not paying over the odds for their energy.

“Unfortunately, households who are loyal to their energy provider once their current deal expires are usually rewarded with a significantly more expensive tariff that doesn’t represent value for money. However, there are a range of competitive tariffs available at the moment for those who take the initiative and shop around.

“With potential average savings of almost £300 to be had, it really pays to be an active energy shopper and spend just a few minutes comparing tariffs to see whether you could save.”

Top 10 cheapest dual fuel tariffs

Supplier Tariff Tariff type Annual cost Early exit fees
GB Energy Supply Premium Energy Saver Variable £830 None
extraenergy Fresh Fixed Price Nov 2016 v3 Fixed £850 £25 per fuel
first:utility iSave Fixed October 2016 v2 Fixed £852 £30 per fuel
Robin Hood Energy Robin Hood Energy Prime Fixed £859 None
extraenergy Bright Fixed Price Nov 2016 v2 Fixed £860 £25 per fuel
GnERGY Fixed September 2016 v1 Fixed £865 £25 per fuel
Flow Energy Flow Variable Variable £872 None
Flow Energy Connect Fixed £872 None
Green Star Energy Rate Saver 12 Month Fixed 2509 Fixed £875 £30 per fuel
Sainsbury’s Energy Fixed Price September 2016 Fixed £876 £30 per fuel

*Based on dual fuel, payment by monthly direct debit, averaged across all UK regions and for households with an annual energy usage of 12,500kWh gas and 3,100kWh electricity (medium user). Correct as of 14/09/2015. Excludes any collective tariffs.

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