Gas prices set to fall in Northern Ireland by about 20%
Gas prices are set to fall for just over 200,000 customers in Northern Ireland from the start of next month, as both SSE Airtricity and Firmus Energy have announced price cuts, which will take £100+/year off a typical bill.
On Thursday, Firmus Energy – the only supplier of gas in the regulated 'Ten Towns' area – revealed a 21.2% cut to gas prices. This means 46,000 customers will see bills drop by a typical £135/yr.
This was followed by an announcement from SSE Airtricity today (Friday 6 March) of an 18.7% cut in gas prices for the Greater Belfast area, which will see bills fall by a typical £108/yr for 163,000 customers.
Both price cuts will take effect on Wednesday 1 April.
While price cuts are welcome, there's not much you can do to reduce your gas bill further, apart from using less. In the Ten Towns region, Firmus Energy is the only supplier for gas. In Greater Belfast, you can choose between SSE Airtricity and Firmus Energy, though there are few savings to be had by switching from one to the other.
For more information, see our Cheap Northern Ireland Energy guide.
Why are prices falling?
According to the Utility Regulator for Northern Ireland, both price cuts were down to a significant decrease in wholesale gas costs (what suppliers pay).
The regulator also said there was an "over recovery from the current tariff period" that is being returned to customers. This is where gas prices turned out lower than forecast when the regulator last looked at Firmus Energy and SSE Airtricity prices.
What does SSE Airtricity and Firmus Energy say?
Andrew Greer, SSE Airtricity general manager (Northern Ireland), said: "This is welcome news for our customers who chose to switch to greener energy with SSE Airtricity. The 18.7% decrease in our regulated natural gas prices will save our household customers, with typical usage of 12,000 KWh, £102.60 in their annual costs."
Michael Scott, managing director of Firmus Energy, said: "This is more good news for customers in our Ten Towns network area and is particularly welcome against a backdrop of increased living costs. This saving follows on from a previous reduction of 8.77% in October last year and means that natural gas is now almost 30% cheaper than last summer."
What about electricity?
While only two firms provide gas in Northern Ireland, five different firms provide electricity, so there are more options to save. How much you can save depends on whether you're on a credit meter or prepay, plus where you are and your usage – see how to find a cheaper electricity deal for more.