SSE has become the latest Big Six supplier to announce that it's raising its energy prices, following in the footsteps of most of its rivals, who've announced similar hikes in recent weeks. As has become the theme, it's electricity customers who will be hit hardest, resulting in the average standard dual fuel bill rising by 6.9% from the end of April.
SSE says that its standard electricity prices will rise by a whopping 14.9%, on average, from 28 April 2017, but that gas prices will remain unchanged. However, the electricity hike will still add an extra £1.40 every single week to the typical dual fuel customer's bill – equating to almost £73 per year, and potentially impacting 2.8 million customers.
In explaining its decision, the supplier cited the same factors as its competitors. "Over the past three years, we've been able to either cut or freeze our Standard energy prices," the statement said. "But the rise in the cost of supplying energy, along with other factors that make up your bill [such as the cost of meeting Government initiatives and installing smart meters], means we've had to take the difficult decision to increase our electricity prices."
SSE pointed out that it's only customers on its standard tariffs that will be affected, meaning those on fixed price deals or with a pay as you go meter won't see any change to their bills. However, almost 3 million will – and if you're one of them, you don't have to put up with it!
The supplier itself said that one of the best ways to beat the price hike is to switch to a fixed rate tariff, but you don't have to stay with SSE.
You don't have to stick with a well-known name, either. Smaller, independent energy providers are quickly becoming the top choice for those hoping to get a better deal as well as better customer service, with Ofgem, the energy regulator, recently revealing that these suppliers are rapidly growing their market share.
Switching could save a small fortune, too, particularly if you've been on a standard variable rate for a while, with Ofgem figures showing that you could save around £230 a year. So what are you waiting for? Loyalty rarely pays when it comes to gas and electricity, so don't be afraid to see what else is out there – you could save hundreds of pounds in the process.
Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.