Assumed Annual Usage

  • gazjwilko's Avatar
    Level 5
    Hi All

    As like you I'm worried about the future costs of my gas and electricity and have taken to this forum to try to understand more about the options we have and hopefully make my mind up on whether to fix or not.

    So my current plan is FixAgain1Yearv10 and I've been paying a direct debit of £83 a month, which at the moment looks like it will cover my usage up until my plan ends on 17th August.

    I've been alerted to the fact my current plan requires renewing and I have three options:

    • NextFlex Variable - £128 a month
    • NextOnlinev16 - £190 a month
    • Next 1 Yearv15 - £263 a month

    Now obviously i am well aware of the current crisis we find ourselves in but I'm astonished to find that the cheapest fixed tariff would more than double my current direct debit a month. Over £100 extra a month! Unbelieavble. My wife and I live in a small house, no children and I would say our usage is average.

    I have worked out my current usage since our last tariff started in August last year right up until today.

    • Gas = 7686kWh
    • Electricty = 1770kWh

    I have just under a month left to go on my current tariff so I would think I'll use approx 100kWh Gas and 230kWh Electricty by the time the tariff ends. So this brings me on to wondering my Eon Next have forecasted that my assumed annual usage for next year will be 9,357kWh for Gas and 2,134kWh for Electricity. I believe the assumed usage for Electricity is more or less correct there abouts, however I don't know where the extra 1500kWh usage proposed for Gas is coming from!?

    I'd like to get a few opinions from others on the tariffs available to me and whether anyone is facing a similar increase? I've spoken to friends and family and some have mentioned there prices have doubled, however I just can't accept to go from £83 a month to £190 a month! That's a huge increase. Please tell me if this is just the norm at the moment or should i be concerned?

    Many thanks

  • 12 Replies

  • Best Answer

    meldrewreborn's Avatar
    Level 88
    Best Answer

    You need to adjust your thinking and look at prices. I've posted elsewhere that based on estimates from Cornwall Insight, an energy consultancy, electricity unit prices are likely to be 50p per unit and gas 16p per unit this winter, assuming standing charges don't alter. If you compare that to the fixes you've got sight of that might make your decision easier.

    You have by luck or judgement done very well out of your fix and avoided 2 substantial increases in the variable price cap, but the good times are ending (even if you don't regard it that way) 70+% of customers are paying variable rates, and many are struggling with the fix or not to fix dilemma. It comes down to prices times consumption plus standing charges.

    Welcome to the real world! My gas supplier went bust last year and my fix to April 2024 went with it. i would have been paying circa 3p per unit and now its likely to be 16p per unit. That's the reality of the situation.
    Current Eon Next and EDF customer, ex Zog and Symbio. Don't think dual fuel saves money and don't like smart meters. Chronologically Gifted. If I offend let me know by private message, but I’ll continue to express my opinions nonetheless.
  • Best Answer

    Andy65's Avatar
    Level 41
    Best Answer
    Hi @gazjwilko

    You've done the right thing and analysed your usage over the last year, rather than just looking at monthly payments. You need to query the forecast usage that eon-next are using for your renewal quotes. The other question is where your account is currently, ie credit or deficit and by how much.

    I'm going onto the NextFlex Variable at the end of this month and my payments are increasing by about £23 per month, but I am about £130 in credit currently. To me it seems that the choice is to pay now on a fixed deal or pay later on the Variable.

    What I find most annoying is the inability to easily compare the tariffs available, but that's down to OFGEM as usual not acting in the consumers interests.
  • gazjwilko's Avatar
    Level 5
    @meldrewreborn @Andy65

    Hi both, would just like to say thank you for taking the time to read my post and reply. I think from reading @meldrewreborn's reply the reality of the cost going up is kicking in and as much as i can afford the extra £100 a month, it's such a big jump. I've always done my research and used uSwitch to help me manage my usage and costs, that's why i've always had quite a good deal. I've always opted for a fixed plan rather than the variable as i like to be in control of my usage and i'm well aware of the costs going up and down etc on a variable. If the unit prices do get to 50p per unit for electric and 16p per unit for gas in the winter, that would be more than the cheapest fixed offered to me which is 44p per unit for electric and 11p per unit for gas. Will the price cap help though? On Octopus Energy website there's a message suggesting everyone is better off staying with their current energy supplier right now. If your fixed term is coming to an end, don't choose a new tariff or switch supplier. Instead let your supplier automatically move you to their default tariff, so your prices are protected by the Government's Energy Price Cap. What do you guys make of that? You've got them saying that and when you read anything from Martin Lewis, it kind of makes you sway into thinking of fixing again, especially with the increase likely in Winter. - Still undecided what to do! 🤔

    Cheers Gents.
  • Andy65's Avatar
    Level 41
    I think anyone like us @gazjwilko who've got a fixed deal just coming to an end have had it better than most, however we'll only be offered the highest fixed tariffs now so the increase will be bigger. It's swings and roundabouts, we've paid less up to now but we'll soon be paying more.

    From what I've seen switching suppliers hasn't been worth it for a few years because OFGEM restricted the number of tariffs the suppliers can offer so they essentially all offered VERY similar tariffs.

    I'm going with the variable, more down to instinct than anything else. The uncertainty in the markets means that it's a gamble, there's no real way that I can see of working out which tariff will be best.
  • gazjwilko's Avatar
    Level 5
    Hi @Andy65

    I've also decided to stick with the variable. I don't think the fixeds are really worth taking out that i've been offered. Martin Lewis has said the predictions are now 77/78% increase on the price cap in October! We can only hope the government steps in and sorts this mess out, however I won't bank on it! A lot of couples and families on low incomes are going to really struggle this winter, it's frightening!
  • meldrewreborn's Avatar
    Level 88
    Virtually all the suppliers are charging at the price cap on their variable tariffs because they claim to be losing money at the current levels. The price cap is set going forward but using wholesale prices looking back so the rates are actually lower than the current market prices would dictate. Because all the suppliers charge the same amount for variable there is no financial benefit to switching. None of the suppliers want the hassle. So the only fixed deals you can identify are with your current supplier. I've given my assessment of this winters price cap prices, and if you can get a fix lower than those then fixing is a possibility. Remember that Eon Next don't charge exit fees so if you go for a fix and the new variable rates are less you can change again.

    Once the new price cap figures are out you can expect all the suppliers to withdraw their fix price offerings before replacing them with new. Only time will tell if now was a good time to fix or not - we all have to make our own decisions with imperfect information.

    PS I'm fixed for both fuels with different suppliers.
  • gazjwilko's Avatar
    Level 5

    Thanks for the info. I ended up fixing in the end on v18. 73% more than the current price cap as I saw the predictions of 90%+ forecasted for the year ahead. I think looking at it now it was best to do so, especially with the no exit fees. If the government are pressured into freezing or lowering the expected price cap rise in October I will re-consider my options but i won't be holding my breath!
  • JoeSoap's Avatar
    Level 89

    None of us knows for sure what's going to happen but I think that you made the right choice with v18. That doesn't make me right, of course. The predictions of 90% you quote look optimistic now and if you got that figure from the Martin Lewis site then the predictions there have got worse. Just remember that these predictions are for typical users.

    I fixed at v17, having previously been offered v15 and dismissing it as being too high. The beauty of hindsight.
  • gazjwilko's Avatar
    Level 5
    @JoeSoap We seem to be in a similar position as I fixed at v18 having been previously offered v16. I think it would have been about £25 a month less if I had bitten the bullet straight away, however the amount of confusion surrounding the whole situation required some thought. As @meldrewreborn pointed out, with the fixed versions having no exit fees i saw it eventually as a no brainer. I do feel for a lot of people who are not yet aware of how much the rise in pricing is going to affect them from October.