They know how to pick their moments, don’t they?
Today, as a chilly, bleary eyed nation was collectively reaching for the central heating dial, energy firm SSE dropped the bombshell that it would be hiking prices by 8.2%.
This will add over £100 a year to the average SSE customer’s annual dual fuel bill.
Will Morris, group managing director for retail at SSE, said: “We’re sorry we have to do this. We’ve done as much as we could to keep prices down, but the reality is that buying wholesale energy in global markets, delivering it to customers’ homes, and government-imposed levies collected through bills – endorsed by all the major parties – all cost more than they did last year."
The hikes are due to come into effect on 15 November 2013, just as the nights really start drawing in and gas and electricity usage reaches its peak.
Jeremy Cryer, energy expert at Gocompare.com, said: “SSE’s announcement has kicked off the inevitable domino effect of energy price rises that we have come to expect at this time of year. It’s now just a case of when, rather than if, the rest of the big six will follow suit.
“If people want to ensure that they don’t spend more than they need to on the energy they use this winter, they should shop around now to find the best tariff for their region and energy consumption. It takes just five minutes to compare hundreds of tariffs, and with most people saving £153.21* or more on their annual bill by switching providers, that’s time well spent."
Last week, EDF unveiled a new fixed price tarriff of £1,340 which will extent to 2017. Meanwhile, First Utility promised to keep variable tariffs unchanged at current levels until March last year.
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*Between 1 April 2013 and 30 June 2013, at least 51% of people who switched energy supplier for both gas and electricity with Gocompare.com saved 153.21 or more.