Electric Ireland raises energy prices again - Newstalk
Electric Ireland has just announced further price hikes for both its gas and electricity customers. Despite the organisation reporting profits of €629 million in 2021, ESB and Electric Ireland say they have little choice given the input costs they’re dealing with.
Our Head of Communications at bonkers.ie, Daragh Cassidy spoke to Anton Savage about the latest increase, the ongoing energy crisis, and what it all means for customers' finances.
Electric Ireland’s price increase
This is Electric Ireland’s second price increase this year, but over the past year, the supplier has had about four price increases. This price hike is adding just over 11% to electricity bills and about 32% to gas bills, so it’s pretty hefty.
If you add up all the price increases from Electric Ireland over the past year, around €700 has been added to annual household electricity bills and a similar amount to gas bills, on average.
We’ll probably see more price increases from Electric Ireland and other energy suppliers before we get into winter.
Even after today’s price hike, Electric Ireland is still offering some of the lowest energy prices.
Some suppliers in the past year have more than doubled energy prices, adding over €2,000 to energy bills.
How much will bills increase with the new price hike?
The increase comes in from August 1st and will add around €165 more to electricity bills and around €312 to gas bills on average.
Gas and electricity prices were already at record levels, and this is just sending them into astronomical territory.
When we get into winter it will be pretty bleak and expensive.
Standing charges are also going up as well. So before you even turn on an appliance, you’re paying over €300 a year now in standing charges.
Will shopping around help?
While everyone is in the same boat, you absolutely can soften the blow by switching to a cheaper supplier.
The suppliers still offer discounts of up to 40% or more for people who switch. If you haven't switched energy supplier yet, now is the time to do it.
Inflation now stands at 9.6%
According to Eurostat, inflation in Ireland in June was estimated to be running at 9.6%.
Energy costs have got the most amount of attention in recent months, but we’ve now seen other prices increasing too:
- Mortgage rates are starting to creep up
- The ECB looks like it’s going to raise interest rates over the next week
- Petrol and diesel are at record levels
- Streaming services have increased in price
- Broadband and TV prices have gone up
- Food inflation is at the highest level in a decade
I worry we’ll go into a period now with record prices for food. It’s been a while since we’ve seen price levels increase across so many areas.
Are there other measures people can take to offset energy prices?
Looking at retrofitting your home is one way, but that’s expensive. Not everyone has €40,000 - 60,000 to renovate their home.
There’s a huge shortage of labour at the moment, so even if you did decide to put in solar panels, you could be waiting a very long time.
In regards to short-term measures, people should look at switching and determine ways they can reduce their energy consumption around the home.
The SEAI (Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland) has some good tips to help with this.
Also, check in with your local social welfare office to see if there are any payments or supports you may be entitled to.
What’s the Government doing?
VAT has been temporarily reduced on energy bills to 9%, but only for 6 months from May to October. This is when energy demand and use are at the lowest.
The VAT is due to go back up when there will probably be more price increases announced. This will have to be extended for the foreseeable future.
If hotels and the hospitality sector can get a reduced VAT rate, then so should energy.
Switch and save with bonkers.ie
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