Co-operative Energy confirmed this week a price rise of 5.2 per cent for 128,000 customers from 20th August.
The price rise will affect all those with a standard variable tariff and add an average of £61 onto a dual fuel energy bill.
This is the 25th price change so far this year and after the rise an average bill from Co-operative Energy will be £373 higher than the cheapest energy tariff on the market.
Annual SVR energy bills will rise by £61 from August 20th to an average of £1,218
The price rise will bring the average cost of a standard variable tariff to £1,218 for Co-operative Energy customers.
This also includes customers who were originally with GB Energy, who were transferred over to Co-operative Energy when it went bust in 2016.
In total there have been 25 price increases to standard variable tariffs so far this year and all of the big six suppliers, and a number of smaller providers, have hiked prices.
Overall prices have risen by 5.6 per cent across all of the energy providers and some, such as EDF, have announced two price hikes. It confirmed the second rise last week of 6 per cent which will add £70 on to the bills of those with a standard tariff.
Yet although prices are rising across the board, there are still savings to be had. There are a number of cheap fixed-rate tariffs on the market, and the cheapest available is £373 cheaper than the standard variable tariff from Co-operative Energy.
The firms have blamed rising wholesale prices on the hikes, along with a rise in the cost of government obligations.
Ofgem tracks the price of energy in its Supplier Cost Index and includes wholesale costs, network costs and the charges to suppliers associated with government programmes.
Between February and May this year, the price increased by 5.3 per cent largely due to rises in wholesale energy costs. It increased 14.1 per cent in the 12 months before May 2018 and is currently 9.7 per cent higher than at the start of 2015.
Between February and May costs rose by 5.3 per cent largely due to rises in wholesale energy
A spokesperson for Co-op Energy said: ‘As the largest member-owned energy supplier in the UK, our customers are at the heart of everything we do. That is why we do our best to protect them from price fluctuations wherever possible.
‘For that reason, we were the first major energy supplier to automatically move customers onto a new fixed-price default tariff rather than our variable tariffs, and why we have sought to absorb the significant increases in wholesale energy costs this year.
‘However, this is not sustainable indefinitely and we have therefore reluctantly taken the decision to pass on some of these costs to customers on our Green Pioneer tariff from August 20.’
Rik Smith, uSwitch energy expert, says: ‘The news from Co-operative Energy is the 25th overall increase announced this year. We have now seen at least one price rise from Britain’s ten biggest energy suppliers in 2018 as well as hikes from numerous smaller providers.
‘Despite the warm weather it has been a tough year for energy customers who have seen their bills skyrocket by an average of £58 (5.6 per cent).
‘But in the face of this relentless barrage of price rises taking standard tariffs to nearly £400 above the cheapest deals on the market, bill payers have been fighting back in record breaking numbers.
‘According to the latest data, 2.7 million customers have switched so far this year, with record numbers of people going to small suppliers.’
The highest ever number of switches were recorded in June for energy customers moving to smaller energy providers.
There were 481,677 recorded electricity switches and 49 per cent of these moved to a small supplier, rather than choosing one of the big six energy firms. This is a 19 per cent monthly increase and a record high for those moving to a smaller energy company, according to Energy UK.
QUICK MONEY SAVER: CAN YOU CUT YOUR BILLS?
Energy firms are constantly battling to pinch customers from each other.
Shrewd consumers can take advantage of this by reviewing deals every year to ensure they are on the cheapest deal. Even moving every other year will save you significant amounts.
If you are one of the millions of people who have NEVER switched (i.e. stuck with your original supplier), then you should save a big chunk of cash. A tenth of switchers saved as much as £537 in 2017, according to energyhelpline.
You only need to be interested in the tariff that is going to be cheapest where you live, so do your own postcode comparison in minutes using the tool above – or here – to find the best price.
Read more about other quick tricks to make sure you are getting the best deal on your household bills here