October 18, 2021

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Big 6 energy prices compared

Martin Lewis gives Brits advice on the energy bill crisis

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Energy bills are expected to rise this winter, owing to the price rise in wholesale gas caused by the high demand and the low supply. Already some firms have gone under with Green and Avro the latest of six small energy suppliers which have gone bust due to the impact of skyrocketing prices. And with these bills expected to rise, consumers are naturally worried about the monthly bank balance. But is there a way to save money while prices rise?

Six energy suppliers have already gone bust since the start of the year: Avro, Green, PFP Energy, MoneyPlus Energy, Utility Point, and People’s Energy

All combined, the six companies represented about five percent of the UK market – and 1.5million customers.

A further 35 energy firms face the prospect of collapsing before the end of the winter, analysts have warned.

Now the UK’s Big Six – the largest energy firms in Britain – have been compared by Express.co.uk after speaking to MoneySavingExpert.co.uk (MSE), to find their cheapest fixed-rate deals.

READ MORE: Energy crisis: MP slams Government over electric vehicle ‘burden’



Big 5 energy companies compared: Their cheapest


© GETTY Images
Big 5 energy companies compared: Their cheapest

Who are the Big Six?

Until recently, just six firms supplied gas and electricity to over 90% of the UK’s households.

However, the rise of smaller suppliers has seen this change in a dramatic shift to the energy supplier landscape.

Simple Switch explained: “In recent years, more and more customers have switched over to smaller suppliers, and by 2019, the big six held 70% of the market.

“Now, 10 suppliers share 87.5% of the market, and the share held by ‘smaller suppliers is sitting at around 8%.”

All of the comparisons below were from 4pm on Wednesday September 22, but it’s important to remember that the rates are constantly changing.



Big 5 energy companies compared: Wholesale gas


© GETTY Images
Big 5 energy companies compared: Wholesale gas

E.ON

E.ON has the cheapest fixed tariffs available of the five, ranging from one-year to two-year deals at £1,477 per year, based on typical usage.

The energy supplier also runs Sainsbury’s Energy, which has exactly the same tariff in place, except you could earn up to £60 in Nectar points when you sign up to a two-year deal.

npower

npower is now part of the E.ON group, having been bought in 2019, and all of the customers have been moved over to E.ON.

Scottish Power

Scottish Power announced standard tariff’s would jump by about £139 a year, meaning default customers paying by direct debit will see their bill rise from £1,138 to £1,277.

A Scottish Power spokeswoman said: “We will be moving the costs of our standard variable tariffs in line with Ofgem’s changes to the energy price cap later this year.”

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Big 6:


© PA
Big 6:

British Gas

British Gas’s cheapest fixed-rate tariff is also one of the most expensive of the suppliers compared.

The HomeEnergy Secure deal, which would be in place until at least November 30 2023, would set you back £1,702 annually – again, based on typical usage.

SSE

SSE’s fixed-rate deal would be even more expensive at £1,800 per year.

EDF Energy

EDF has no fixed deals available.



Big 6:


© PA
Big 6:

Energy supplier – Duration of fixed-rate tariff – Price

E.ON – 1 year or 2 years – £1,477 (per year, on typical usage)

Scottish Power – Until December 31 2022 – £1,577 (per year, on typical usage)

British Gas – Until November 30 2023 – £1,702 (per year, no typical usage)

SSE – 2 years – £1,800 (per year, on typical usage)

But, just because you could find a cheaper deal elsewhere, it might be more prudent to sit tight for now, according to MSE founder, Martin Lewis.

You could move to a cheaper price-capped variable tariff, but accept that after the price cap – inevitably – rises from April 2022, you’ll be paying more. You may also have to pay an exit fee from your supplier.

Alternatively, you could stick with a fixed-rate tariff, which provides you with a little more certainty going forward.

Martin said: “Without a crystal ball, I can’t with certainty tell you which will be best. So you have to decide based on your attitude to price versus certainty.”

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