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Energy bills set to rise by as much as £317.76 a year as nine fixed tariffs end on Monday

26 August 2015

Nine fixed tariffs expire on 31 August, five of which will see customers’ bills jump up 8.14% on average.

  • Nine fixed dual fuel tariffs are due to end in a matter of days;
  • Five of the expiring tariffs could see customers’ average annual energy bills rise by £90.18 (8.14%);*
  • First Utility customers in the Norweb region (which includes Manchester) to be hit the hardest, with a massive £317.76 (24.29%) potential rise.**

Households who haven’t shopped around and switched could see their energy bills rise by up to £317.76 a year, when nine fixed dual fuel tariffs expire at the end of August.

Six energy companies – British Gas, EDF Energy, Npower, Sainsbury’s Energy, First Utility and Flow Energy – have tariffs that are due to expire at the end of the month, at which point customers who are on these tariffs will be rolled onto their supplier’s standard tariff.  Where the standard tariff is more expensive than the current fixed deal, households will see an 8.14% (£90.18) average increase to their annual energy bills unless they shop around and switch to a better deal.

For households in the Norweb region – which includes Manchester – the effect of their fixed tariff coming to an end could be particularly pricey. Customers in that area who are on the First Utility iSave Fixed v23 August 2015 tariff could be hit with a huge £317.76 (24.29%) rise when they are automatically switched to First Utility’s standard tariff, called iSave Everyday.

The five biggest potential increases when tariffs expire at the end of this month (based on a medium user – 3,200 kWh of electricity and 13,500 kWh of gas per year – paying by monthly direct debit):

Energy distribution area

Supplier

Tariff

Price increase

Norweb

First Utility

iSave Fixed v23 August 2015

£317.76

(24.29%)

Eastern

First Utility

iSave Fixed v23 August 2015

£280.78

(22.93%)

Southern

First Utility

iSave Fixed v23 August 2015

£270.91

(21.40%)

East Midlands

EDF Energy

Blue +Price Promise August 2015

£136.59

(13.62%)

Eastern

EDF Energy

Blue +Price Promise August 2015

£132.26

(12.11%)



Impact of tariffs coming to an end on Monday 31 August (based on a medium user – 3,200 kWh of electricity and 13,500 kWh of gas per year – paying by monthly direct debit and averaged across all UK regions):

Supplier

Tariff coming to an end

End

date

Dual fuel?

Annual

Cost

Annual cost of standard tariff

Difference

(£ and %)

British Gas

Fix & Control Aug 2015

31/08/15

Yes

£1,256.56

£1,156.11

-£100.45

(-7.99%)

British Gas

Fix & Reward August 2015

31/08/15

Yes

£1,192.97

£1,156.11

-£36.86

(-3.09%)

British Gas

Fixed Price August 2015

31/08/15

Yes

£1,084.81

£1,156.11

£71.30 (6.57%)

EDF Energy

Blue +Price Promise August 2015

31/08/15

Yes

£1,048.77

£1,154.53

£105.76 (10.08%)

Npower

Price Fix August 2015

31/08/15

Yes

£1,119.37

£1,169.33

£49.96 (4.46%)

Sainsbury’s Energy

Fixed Price August 2015

31/08/15

Yes

£1,074.61

£1,156.11

£81.50 (7.05%)

Sainsbury’s Energy

Fix & Reward August 2015

31/08/15

Yes

£1,192.97

£1,156.11

-£36.86

(-3.19%)

Flow Energy

Thames Online Fixed September 2015

31/08/15

Yes

£1,010.07

£913.80

£-96.27

(-9.5%)

First Utility

iSave Fixed v23 August 2015

31/08/15

Yes

£992.48

£1,134.85

£142.37

(12.54%)



While most of the tariffs ending in August will cause significant price rises for customers who fail to shop around and switch, some customers may see a reduction in their energy bills when their fixed tariff comes to an end. This is because their supplier’s standard tariff is cheaper than the fixed deal they are currently on.

Because of this, customers on the British Gas Fix & Control Aug 2015 and Fix & Reward August 2015 tariffs, as well as households the Sainsbury’s Energy Fix & Reward August 2015, will see their bills drop by an average of £58.06 (4.78%) when their tariffs come to an end.

However, they could save almost £300 simply by going online and switching to one of the UK’s current best buys (see table below).

Caroline Lloyd, energy spokesperson at Gocompare.com, said: “For a number of years now, fixed tariffs – where customers sign up to a fixed price on their gas and electricity for a set term, usually between one and two years – have proved popular, due undoubtedly to the fact that they have tended to be the most competitively priced deals. However, fixed tariffs expire, and when they do, customers who have them are transferred onto their providers’ standard tariffs, unless they proactively switch to another tariff or supplier.

“Make no mistake; standard tariffs do not represent good value. There are always other tariffs – whether fixed or variable – that will provide better prices than a standard tariff. Even for those people who will save money by moving onto their supplier’s standard tariff when their fixed tariff ends, it’s well worth their while to go online, shop around, and switch to a better deal.

“There are some competitive tariffs available at the moment, both fixed price and variable, with potential average savings of almost £300 to be had. So whether you have a fixed tariff coming to an end soon, or are on a standard or variable tariff already, get online and compare the deals available to you.”

Top ten cheapest dual fuel tariffs

Supplier

Tariff

Tariff type

Annual cost

Early exit fees

GB Energy Supply

Premium Energy Saver

Variable

£870

None

extraenergy

Fresh Fixed Price Nov 2016 v3

Fixed

£889

£25 per fuel

first:utility

iSave Fixed October 2016 v2

Fixed

£890

£30 per fuel

extraenergy

Bright Fixed Price Nov 2016 v2

Fixed

£900

£25 per fuel

Sainsbury's Energy

Fixed Price August 2016

Fixed

£903

£30 per fuel

GnERGY

Fixed September 2016 v1

Fixed

£909

£25 per fuel

Green Star Energy

Rate Saver 12 Month Fixed 2508

Fixed

£913

£30 per fuel

= Flow Energy

Flow Variable

Variable

£914

None

= Flow Energy

Connect

Fixed

£914

None

OVO Energy

Better Energy Fixed (All Online)

Fixed

£918

None



Based on dual fuel, payment by monthly direct debit, averaged across all UK regions and for households with an annual energy usage of 13,500kWh gas and 3,200kWh electricity (medium user). Correct as of 26/08/2015. List excludes collective deals.

For more information on switching energy supplier, read Gocompare.com’s guides, here: http://www.gocompare.com/gas-and-electricity/guide/

-ends-

Notes to editors:

*Average increase across all UK regions and across tariffs coming to an end where there will be a price increase as a result of the supplier’s standard tariff being more expensive on 31 August 2015 deal is (8.14%) or £90.18.

** based on a medium user – 3,200 kWh of electricity and 13,500 kWh of gas per year – paying by monthly direct debit, living in the Norweb energy distribution area. The First Utility iSave Fices v23 August 2015 tariff has an average annual cost of £990.41 for Norweb customers. The First Utility standard tariff has an average annual cost of £1,308.17 for Norweb customers, a £317.76 difference (24.29%)