All of the Big Six energy providers have hiked prices this year for those with a Standard Variable Tariff and now a number of smaller firms are following suit.
Last week Ovo announced it was putting up prices for customers with its standard tariff by 5.1 per cent from 8 June.
Then green energy suppler Bulb confirmed it was also pushing up the cost of its only tariff by 5.1 per cent from 11 June for all of its customers.
Ofgem’s Supplier Cost Index tracks wholesale costs and Government costs to energy firms
The next provider to announce a hike was Utility Warehouse, of 4.4 per cent from 1 July this year, which will affect all of its customers on the standard tariff.
These three providers are some of the biggest of the small energy firms and therefore it’s likely other providers will also hike prices.
If you’re still paying your provider’s standard tariff it’s almost certain you’re overpaying. This is especially significant at the moment because all of the Big Six energy providers are bringing in price hikes at the moment.
But even if you’re not with one of the big providers, your bills may have still risen this year as a number of smaller providers have also increased prices.
Ovo customers will see £53 added to their annual bills with the price rise coming in at the end of last week. This brings the average standard tariff up to £1,090 from £1,037.
Meanwhile Bulb’s 450,000 customers will see their prices increase by around £4 per month to an average of £923 a year, from £879.
For Utility Warehouse customers the price will rise by around £50 a year to an average of £1,175.
Energy customers with a standard tariff from the Big Six could save £379 by switching
Ovo said in a pricing statement on its website: ‘Ovo Energy will be increasing the price of its Simpler Energy tariff. The company is making these changes because the cost of commodities has increased substantially over the past year and we are increasing our prices to remain sustainable and responsible.’
While Bulb co-founder Hayden Wood said: ‘Bulb is committed to supplying energy at a fair price.
‘That’s why we have one tariff for all our members, which reflects the true cost of energy. When wholesale energy costs change, our tariff does too.
‘These costs have climbed throughout 2018, and are now 21 per cent higher than they were in February. As a result, from August, our price will be going up by £4 per month for the average Bulb member.’
Ofgem tracks the cost of energy to providers through its Supplier Cost Index which includes wholesale costs, network costs, and charges associated with Government programmes.
|Outfox the Market||Zapp! December Tariff (medium consumption)||£806||£379|
|Powershop||Top Shopper June 2018 Issue 1||£807||£378|
|Economy Energy||Switch Saver||£810||£374|
|Yorkshire Energy||Ladybird Fixed||£841||£343|
|Solarplicity||Solarplicity’s SMART Fixed||£861||£323|
|People’s Energy||The People’s Tariff||£863||£321|
|Utility Point||Just Up 18 Wk19||£869||£316|
|Toto Energy||TOTO Fixed Super Saver – 12 Months||£869||£315|
|Avro Energy||Simple and Glory||£869||£315|
|Source: Energyhelpline, 12/06/18. Saving is a comparison between the average amount of a Big Six SVR.|
It said in the three months to 1 May this year, prices went up 5.3 per cent driven mainly by rises in wholesale energy costs. There was also a small increase to the cost of Government obligations during this time.
Overall the price has gone up 14.1 per cent in the past year from 1 May 2017 and on 1 May 2018 overall electricity prices were 19.7 per cent higher while gas prices were 0.1 per cent higher.
So far the price rises, from both the Big Six and smaller providers, have been relatively in line with the Supplier Cost Index.
But they do mean anyone with a standard variable tariff will see their prices rise. The best way to avoid this is to switch to a fixed-rate tariff, whereby the amount you pay for each unit of energy stays the same for the period of the contract.
The cheapest on the market at the moment is £806 from Outfox The Market which is £379 cheaper than the average standard tariff from a Big Six provider.
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