EDF gave details of an electricity price rise back in in December, and then last week, npower revealed a shocking electricity price increase of 15% for standard tariff customers, alongside the price of their gas increasing by 4.8% (effective from March 16th).
npower’s increase was the largest price increase from a big six supplier in three years.
Now, ScottishPower is putting its prices up by 7.8% or £86 per year for gas and electricity from 31st March 2017: 10.8% on electricity and 4.7% on gas prices.
Who is affected by the price rises?
Those affected will be customers on standard variable tariffs, which act as a supplier’s default tariff when a fixed rate deal comes to an end, you’ve just moved in, or you’ve never switched.
For ScottishPower, this equates to 1.1 million dual fuel customers whose bills will go up from £1,081 to £1,167 a year – the equivalent of £95m across the country — and this doesn’t even take into account those who are on electricity only.
This puts ScottishPower’s standard tariff at £333 more expensive than the average cheapest deal on the market. Those who are on a standard tariff or approaching the end of their fixed term deals should look to find a cheaper energy deal — often a fixed rate tariff where rates can’t change for the duration of the plan.
British Gas bucks the trend and freezes prices
Three of the big six energy suppliers have now given notice of price rises, with neither SSE or EON revealing their plans just yet. British Gas however, have bucked the trend and come forward with a price freeze until August.
Claire Osborne, energy expert at uSwitch, says:
“Price freezes look good on paper, but in reality it is holding prices of the most expensive rates. Even with this freeze, the British Gas standard variable plan is a long way from being the cheapest on the market.
“Although it is the lowest standard variable plan of the big six, at £1,044 a year, it’s still £210 more expensive than the cheapest deal on the market.
“Customers should be switching supplier rather than accepting freezes. You can get a better deal that offers longer protection by switching to a cheaper fixed deal now.”