Over the last few months, several electricity suppliers have increased prices and now gas supplier, firmus energy, have announced they are putting up prices for customers in the ‘Ten Towns’ network area from 1st April 2021.
And with ongoing restrictions and following the ‘stay at home’ message our home energy use remains high so this increase will be unwelcome for firmus energy customers.
What does the price increase mean for customers?
An increase of 17.75% is a substantial hike for the 51,000 firmus energy customers across the Ten Towns area.
Looking at this in more detail a typical domestic customer with a credit meter will see their bill rise by £78 to around £518 per year. Customers with a prepayment gas (PAYG) meter will see an increase of £74 to around £493 per year.
This increase ends the trend of price reductions from firmus energy as they had announced separate price decreases in March 2020 and October 2019. Firmus energy have stated that prices have now broadly returned to Summer 2020 levels.
What firmus energy have said…
Firmus energy have stated that the main driver for the price increase is due to rising wholesale costs which are beyond their control and make up a significant part of the final bill paid by each customer. The price increase has also reviewed and agreed by the Utility Regulator.
Michael Scott, Managing Director of firmus energy, said:
“We know that price stability is important for our customers but the increase of wholesale natural gas costs on the global market, which are beyond our control, have unfortunately made this increase inevitable.
‘Any increase is never welcome news and we recognise this comes at a particularly difficult time for many. We want to assure our customers that we will continue to monitor and review our tariffs to ensure customers are getting the best prices possible’
I’m a firmus energy customer…am I affected?
All this talk of networks may get confusing…and we are not talking about mobile phones!
Northern Ireland is broken into three separate gas networks – these are the Greater Belfast (Phoenix) area, the Ten Towns (firmus) area and the West (SGN) network area. Each is distinct and will have different suppliers, costs and tariff options.
The Ten Towns area is owned and manged by firmus energy and includes: Derry/Londonderry, Limavady, Coleraine (including Portstewart and Bushmills), Ballymoney, Ballymena (Broughshane), Antrim (including Ballyclare and Templepatrick), Craigavon (including Portadown and Lurgan), Banbridge, Newry (Warrenpoint), Armagh (Tandragee) and more than 25 other towns and villages in the surrounding area.
Only firmus energy customers in the Ten Towns network are affected by this price increase. Customers in the Greater Belfast and in the West network area will not be impacted by this price announcement.
Get in touch with your energy supplier
As everyone realises we are living in uncertain times. It’s important to get in touch with your energy supplier to discuss any payment issues or concerns and help manage your account. Even providing an up to date meter read can make sure your payments are accurate and up to date.
Finding a better deal…
At ‘Power to Switch’ we compare all tariffs and deals across all electricity suppliers to save you money. Switching is quick, hassle-free and means you keep more money in your pocket. You don’t even have to tell your old supplier you are leaving!!!