Electricity and gas provider Energia is to increase its prices from early next month in a move which will see the annual bills of many customers climb by more than €100.
The supplier has announced that its residential electricity prices will climb by 8.6 per cent while its gas prices will jump by 5.7 per cent from April 5th.
The increase will add just over €100 a year to the average household’s annual electricity bill and around €48 to the average annual gas bill.
The company cited increased network transmission charges and increased energy prices as the reason for the price increase.
Last spring it dropped its electricity prices by 3 per cent while its gas prices fell by 12 per cent.
The price increase comes on the back of similar announcements from SSE Airtricity, Pinergy and Glowpower over recent days.
"Energia is the now fourth supplier to announce a price hike in recent days after most of the suppliers committed to a winter price freeze late last year," said Daragh Cassidy of comparison and switching website bonkers.ie .
"However that price freeze has well and truly come to an end for many customers as we move into spring and all eyes are now on the country's biggest gas and electricity suppliers, Electric Ireland and Bord Gáis Energy, to see what they do."
Mr Cassidy pointed out that Energia is one of biggest energy suppliers in Ireland so the increase "will be felt by many customers nationwide. And it comes at a time when energy use at home has probably never been higher due to us all being stuck indoors due to lockdown and when many might be struggling financially due to losing their job".
He said the only saving grace was that the increase would not come into effect until April when “hopefully the weather will be a bit milder and the evenings brighter.”
Energy prices collapsed at the height of the pandemic but have started to climb again in recent months as the world economy starts to reopen.
Transmission and distribution network charges – or more simply the charges for maintaining and running the country’s gas and electricity networks – have been increased by the energy regulator in recent months.
Such charges make up around 30 per cent of the price we pay for our energy and the providers have not been slow in passing the cost on to consumers.
“At the moment someone who is paying standard rates and who switches supplier could save themselves around €500 a year on average,” Mr Cassidy said adding that it was “quick and easy to switch and can all be done online in the space of a few minutes”.