New figures from comparison and switching site energyhelpline.com reveal that energy price rises – taking effect two weeks from today – will total a staggering £927m for 9.6million customers with the six largest energy suppliers in Great Britain.
The price hikes, announced during the end of last month, follow the decision by regulator Ofgem on 5 February to raise the energy price cap for default Standard Variable Tariffs by £96 to £1,138 for the six month period from 1 April.
British Gas’ 2.4million default tariff customers will see an average annual rise of £97 each from next month, equating to a collective rise of £228m. This is followed closely by 2.3million OVO Energy/SSE customers, who face a combined £226m hike from the start of next month.
Table: Price rises from 1 April for the largest six GB energy suppliers
|Supplier||SVT Name||Current average price||New average price||Increase||Customers on SVT||Total rise for all SVT customers|
|British Gas||Standard Variable||£1,041||£1,138||£97||2,357,414||£228,398,715|
|OVO Energy/SSE||Simpler Energy/Standard||£1,042||£1,138||£96||2,344,027||£226,043,572|
|EDF Energy||Standard (Variable)||£1,042||£1,138||£96||1,327,367||£127,178,829|
Tom Lyon, director of energy at energyhelpline.com, said:
“These wide-ranging price hikes couldn’t possibly come at a worse time for consumers, 12 months after coping with spiralling energy bills due to COVID-19 restrictions.
“With the number of homes in the red to their energy provider already at a record five-year high, the surge in debt is only set to get worse. That’s why we are calling on the Government to do more to help households, by temporarily cutting VAT on bills and reforming the Cold Weather Payment so it better helps the most vulnerable to keep warm.
“If you are worried about paying your bill, speak to your supplier as soon as possible to discuss ways they can help. It’s also important to send regular meter readings, if you don’t have a smart meter, to your provider so your bill is accurate and to avoid any nasty surprises later in the year.
“While the price cap affects some of the most expensive deals on the market, fixed deals are unaffected and switching to a competitive fixed tariff will lower bills and lock in prices for 12 months or more. However, rising wholesale costs have increased the prices of the most competitive tariffs on the market by 17% since last April, so consumers are strongly advised to switch and fix sooner rather than later.”