We are increasing our tariff by £2 per month

We posted a blog post this morning explaining why we are increasing our tariff by £2 per month.

As we noted in the post, we’re increasing our tariff for the typical home by 2.8%. A typical home will see their annual tariff increase from £855 to £879 - a rise of £2 per month. Existing members will stay on their current rates for 60 days until 28th April. New members will start on our new rates straight away.

Increased wholesale and policy costs have driven the price rise, but Bulb has absorbed much of these increased costs.

How did we do in explaining this?
Here’s how we’ve kept members in the loop:

  1. We sent an email to all of our members on the 18th of December explaining that we might have to increase our prices
  2. We let every new member since then know that we might increase our prices
  3. We’ve given all our members 60 days’ notice from today. This is double what Ofgem recommends
  4. We write a wholesale market update every three months so that everyone can keep on top of energy news

Is there anything else that we could do to make price increases less painful in future?

@tom6685 I saw you asked:

How come the standing charge is going up? Or from doing a new quote it looks as if it is. Or is it just higher for new customers joining?

23.39p currently to 24.56p. I thought the standing charge was more to cover sort of fixed costs i.e. staff, infrastructure etc and this would rarely change

The standing charge is staying the same. It's 23.39 ex VAT and 24.56 inc VAT.

(NB: I deleted your comment without meaning to. I’m sorry about that! It lives on in the quote within my comment…)

I’ve not received an email with the news of the price rise today, so I’m not sure that I agree with point 3 in the update above. Although I found the blog post (linked from an external source) I don’t know if that counts as being notified of the increase today, in which case the 60 day point could be questionned. I could just be a bit early and the emails are on their way!

In the Personal Details of the “My Bulb/Account” at https://account.bulb.co.uk/dashboard/personal-details , I’ve now got a message from Bulb giving the new rates for this. I’m sure email notifications are on the way out, but sending several thousand personalised emails will take a short time to generate and then be pushed out (especially to avoid tripping spam filters) - but if you want to see what your new rates are, just login and view your messages. Looks like I’ll be paying £24 per year more, but I’ve already saved £10/year from my previous supplier (who has since put up prices so I’m probably saving even more) and with the referral bonuses I’m saving a lot more and getting green energy to boot.

@CJG and @RichyB the roughly 300k emails take 8-10 hours to send to everyone :astonished:

Understood! Cheers guys

I’m sure it is not you intention, but to me, they way you have explained the increase is not very transparent and seems quite deceptive.

You talk allot about % increases and costs for average households. You can’t do allot with that. It would be better to say this is the current standing charge and rate for our Gas/Elec and this is what it will be when it goes up.

This way I can see exactly what MY increase will be, not some average of everyone on Bulb.
I can also then compare the new tariffs to other companies to see if I am still getting the best deal. Right now I can’t do any of this.

I have seen other companies explain rates like you have in order to make comparisons more difficult. I’m sure you don’t want to come across like this so perhaps include this information in your explanation.

Disappointing but less of a rise than EE for my broadband and mobile at 4.1% due to RPI index they say. But to me such logic is self-perpetuating. Is the price rise partially due to a poor pound as a result of Brexit?

@skr if I’ve understood your concern correctly, I think the email will give you all of the information you’re looking for (your rates, and the impact on your household’s specific annual or monthly spend).

I do see what you mean about the need to have the unit rates, though. Here they are:

No change to Standing Charge and Dual Fuel discounts.
All tabled prices include VAT.

@phil321 interesting question! @“Amit at Bulb”'s answer is basically that the wholesale price increases aren’t linked to currency movements. The pound is weaker against the euro than it was pre-Brexit, but it is not much weaker against the dollar than it was pre-Brexit. And it’s strengthened a bit against both over the last few months.

@skr if I've understood your concern correctly, I think the email will give you all of the information you're looking for (your rates, and the impact on your household's specific annual or monthly spend).

I do see what you mean about the need to have the unit rates, though. Here they are:

No change to Standing Charge and Dual Fuel discounts.
All tabled prices include VAT.

I apologise, I never saw the attachment on my phone before I hastily commented. The attachment was exactly what I was looking for.

So the price per kWh is going up from 00:00 on 28 Apr 2018, how does this work in practice for billing purposes? The April bill, issued around the 27th, will reflect old rates and the new rates will be reflected in the May bill?

@ODG if your statement comes on the 1st of each month, for example, on May 1 statement covering April 01 to April 30, usage through 27 Apr 2018 (at 11:59pm) will be at the old tariff. Usage from 28 Apr 2018 (midnight) onward will be at the new tariff.

You might ask how we will calculate usage between the two dates. Either we’ll use a meter reading you give us on 28 April 2018 (which we will think of as being at 00:00, the first minute of that day), or we’ll estimate that dividing read.

Let me know if I’ve understood your question correctly.

Yes you have, I will endeavour to submit a reading on the 28th.
Many thanks.

I’m a new Bulb customer who joined to avoid the big six’s confusing multiple tariff system & to get involved in the green initiative.
The new rates still look good to me.

@ODG thanks – note that as long as you submit readings regularly, the estimate will be very accurate.

@beezer0418 thank you for the confidence and understanding :sweat_smile:

Update: So far we’ve sent the price change email to 85,000 members, with a further 145,000 emails being processed to send this evening. We’ll send the final 80,000 emails tomorrow morning between 7am and 12 noon.

@“Andrew at Bulb” I think it’s time you took a look at the ESP Market :wink:
A lot of them, even on a shared MTA could easily deploy 2million+ an hour - highly personalised emails with no throttling and high deliverability.

Anyways, I really liked the email. Never in my life would i usually say that about a price increase… However the reasoning, the figures personalised to me and promises of returning it down as soon as the market allows kind of made everything ok.

From the email you sent me it appears that my bill is projected to go up up by 6.61%, which is quite a bit more than the 2.8% rise given for a typical home. I guess my home isn’t typical :frowning:

Looking at the exact unit prices in the attachment, I see that gas is going up by 9.886% (ouch - that the heating) and night time electricity is going up by 7.12% (ouch - that’s when I charge my car) and that daytime electricity is going up by only 1.895%.

From this, I would have to guess that a typical home uses a lot more daytime electricity than gas or night time electricity, which puzzles me as I am imagining lots of typical people who don’t have (or don’t use) heating.

I do find it card to understand how a typical home is going to see only 2.8% of increase, particularly given that 9.8% rise in the unit rate for gas. Can you explain this at all?

Good Evening All,

Having just gone to uSwitch I see I can save £137 a year by moving to Ebico (this saving based on projected night time EV charging on top of existing usage)…

Regards

Richard