SSE Airtricity to hike electricity prices by 6.9%
Northern Ireland's second largest energy supplier, SSE Airtricity, is to hike electricity prices by 6.9%, meaning the typical bill for those on its standard tariff will jump by £39/year.
The price increase, effective from Tuesday 1 October, will see the average annual electricity bill for a typical user on the supplier's standard variable tariff rise from £597/yr to £636/yr. The provider's gas prices are unaffected.
The provider supplies electricity to around 173,000 customers in Northern Ireland, accounting for around 21% of the market.
All electricity customers will be affected by the price hike, including those on both prepayment and credit meters, as SSE Airtricity doesn't offer fixed deals. You can get a discount of up to 15% on its standard tariff, though to get the maximum you'll need to pay by direct debit and manage your account online. As they're not fixed deals, when standard prices rise, so do these discounted tariffs.
The price increase from SSE Airtricity follows the news that Northern Ireland's largest electricity supplier, Power NI, is set to increase its prices by 6.1% from October.
See our Cheap Northern Ireland Energy guide for full help and switching information to help you cut costs.
Why are prices increasing?
According to SSE Airtricity, the price hike is due to rising costs associated with using the electricity network, which the Utility Regulator (which regulates electricity, gas and water in Northern Ireland) in turn says is down to fixed costs still having to be paid despite a fall in demand for electricity across Northern Ireland.
Unlike in England and Wales, where standard prices have come down due to Ofgem's price cap, SSE Airtricity's prices aren't regulated and the supplier is free to increase them.
What does SSE Airtricity say?
David Manning, director of home energy at SSE Airtricity, said: "We're disappointed to have to announce an increase in our electricity prices at this time. While there have been reductions in wholesale energy costs, these have been negated by external cost increases applied to all energy suppliers.
"As always, we will do everything we can to ensure we consistently deliver value to our customers in their electricity supply, and to provide the greatest possible help that our customers expect from us."
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