Over the course of 2021, we saw all energy suppliers across NI up their prices – sometimes even two or three times over. This has come with plenty of disappointment and frustration for customers, who faced rising prices through all of 2021 but also increased energy use due to working from home or as a result of being placed on furlough as a result of COVID.
Now that we are in 2022, though, the question is how much more are we paying now than we did at the beginning of last year? We’ve done the research and found out the average estimated increase in annual cost for each of the suppliers for electricity, gas and heating oil, as well.
All suppliers have increased prices significantly since this time last year. The supplier with the biggest increase over the last year has been Budget Energy, jumping by 65.8% adding around £452 a year to a typical bill for customers.
There are three natural gas networks in Northern Ireland. Prices for Firmus Energy customers in the Ten Towns network area have gone up a staggering 91%, which works out roughly as £529 extra per year. In the Phoenix Natural Gas network, where there is a choice of two suppliers prices have also risen significantly.
Over 60% of homes in Northern Ireland rely on home heating oil to heat their home but prices have been climbing over the last year as well.
What you can do
With all prices increasing over the last year it will be impossible to avoid paying more for your home energy, but you can help lessen the impact. Switching to a better deal can help offset the increases. In fact people who switched the energy supplier using Power to Switch saved on average £140.
If your bills have increased this year, we would recommend comparing your energy deal to confirm that you are not paying anymore than you need to. If you have not switched energy deals in the last 12 months, the likelihood is that you are, in fact, paying too much. Use our handy tool to find out in minutes whether you could make a saving.
If you are already on the best deal, we would like to point you towards our energy-saving blogs. They contain lots of information and advice about how you can make your energy usage go further and prevent unnecessary heat loss, too.
Where you can, you should also apply for grants and financial aid. This can include grants for replacing boilers and creating your own energy. You can find more information about these at NI Direct or NIHE.