August 1, 2017
British Gas has announced that they are putting electricity prices up by 12.5% in September. The first increase in energy costs from the UK's biggest supplier since November 2013. Gas prices remain unchanged, meaning that the annual dual fuel bills will rise by 7.3% to £1,120.
The price increase will affect 3.1m customers, with 5.3m unaffected. The average bill cost will rise by £76 and Centrica, the owner of British Gas, has said it will give a £76 credit to more than 200,000 vulnerable customers to protect them from the increase.
British Gas said that the electricity price hike reflected the increasing costs of energy and delivery to customers' home, stating that costs have increased 16% since 2014.
Mark Hodges, head of Centrica Consumer, said:
"We held off increasing prices for many months longer than most suppliers in order to protect our customers from rising costs, so it is a difficult decision to have to announce an increase in electricity prices.
"This rise reflects an underlying increase in policy and transmission costs. We know that keeping energy prices as low as possible is vital, and our new standard tariff price has again been set at a level lower than most of the top 10 suppliers. We are able to do this because we have managed our own cost base tightly."
Hodges followed up the announcement with an appearance on Sky News earlier today. When the reporters challenged British Gas' decision to increase electricity costs, Hodges said competition in the gas market is good" and that their customers "have a choice" to select alternative suppliers.
"Customers do have a choice and can move to many other companies. The barriers to switching are low and that puts pressure on us. That's why we don't make decisions like todays lightly."
If you're a British Gas customer and facing more expensive bills from mid-September, we recommend that you compare other energy suppliers by using our simple online comparison and switching tool. Our energy advisors are also on hand to complete the comparison for you and offer you additional advice on energy suppliers, just call 01259 220000 for free and friendly advice.
Posted on August 1, 2017 at 10:05 AM