From May 2021, many Belgians may get a bad surprise when they open their gas and/or electricity bills. Which households are affected and what is driving this sharp rise in energy prices?
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Energy contracts: look out for an unexpected increase in your bill
A year ago, we told you about a fall in gas and electricity prices that was so dramatic that our experts labelled it historic. Against this very favourable backdrop, nearly 100,000 households took the plunge and changed supplier so that they could enjoy unbeatable prices. However, one year on, our experts at Energyprice.be are sounding the alarm and highlighting an essential principle for avoiding nasty surprises: comparing your energy contract every year is the only way to find out where it sits in relation to the current market.
Antoine Dumont, manager at leading CREG-approved comparison site Energyprice.be, explains: “Many households took advantage of the price falls last year, and the vast majority opted for one-year contracts. These contracts have expired, and the renewal rates from this month onwards will be much higher than last year’s prices for two main reasons:
- Since the fall in April 2020, energy prices on the wholesale markets have started to rise again and have even exceeded pre-Covid levels. This increase has to be passed on in the prices offered by suppliers today.
- The introductory promotions are usually valid for a year. This means that, for the customers affected, these promotions will end from May 2021 onwards. This factor, combined with the price increase, will also contribute to higher final bills.
- So, if you changed your supplier last May and took out a new one-year contract, you will be directly affected by this sharp increase. If you don’t take immediate preventive action, your initial rates will be renewed based on current market rates and without any promotions!
What impact will this increase have on your bills?
In Wallonia, the average increase is 34% for electricity and 49% for gas.
- For a couple without children (with an average consumption of 12,000 kWh for gas and 1,600 kWh for electricity), the annual bill will rise from €891 to €1,328, a difference of €437;
- For a family of four (with an average consumption of 20,000 kWh for gas and 3,500 kWh for electricity), the annual bill will rise from €1,590 to €2,254, a difference of €664;
- For a single person (with an average consumption of 7,000 kWh for gas and 1,000 kWh for electricity), the annual bill will rise from €579 to €904, a difference of €325;
In Flanders, the average increase is 25% for electricity and 59% for gas.
- For a couple without children (with an average consumption of 12,000 kWh for gas and 1,600 kWh for electricity), the annual bill will rise from €786 to €1,190, a difference of €404;
- For a family of four (with an average consumption of 20,000 kWh for gas and 3,500 kWh for electricity), the annual bill will rise from €1,444 to €2,028, a difference of €584;
- For a single person (with an average consumption of 7,000 kWh for gas and 1,000 kWh for electricity), the annual bill will rise from €508 to €819, a difference of €311.
Which energy supplier suits you best? Find it out with a simulation!
10 minutes each year to save hundreds of euro
In daily life and in energy, “prevention is better than cure”, as the saying goes. So much so that anticipating automatic renewal is a really simple way to avoid a dramatic increase. Last April, acting to take advantage of extremely low rates was the right thing to do. Today, the focus is on vigilance and comparison. To ensure that you always enjoy the best deals, our experts recommend not only that you pay attention to your new rates but also that you compare your contracts annually.
So what should you do? Enter your information into our free online tool and find out where your renewal rates sit in relation to the current market rates. Next, simply choose the price plan that is most suitable for your consumption. And that’s it! At Energyprice.be, we also look after the administrative side of things for you. So, why wait if you want to start making savings?
Compare now all energy suppliers active in Belgium and save money on your bill !
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Swiri Minnette 0/5 • 29 October 2022 • 11:23