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AGL and Origin increase electricity prices by up to 30 per cent

Australians will be slammed by massive electricity bill hikes in coming weeks, as major players AGL and Origin Energy pass through price increases as high as 29.8 per cent.

On Monday, the retailers confirmed their increases will raise prices on variable rate deals in New South Wales, Queensland and South Australia on July 1, and in Victoria on August 1.

The average price increase is $447 in Queensland (26.4 per cent), $540 in NSW (29.7 per cent), $447 (26.4 per cent) in Victoria and $565 (29.8 per cent) in South Australia for AGL.

For Origin, electricity prices will rise $407 (21.1 per cent) in NSW, $347 (21.6 per cent) across Queensland, $361 for Victorians (25.5 per cent) and $405 (24.2 per cent) in South Australia.

These enormous price increases that come just weeks after regulators unveiled double-digit price hikes for default market offers, are being blamed on higher wholesale costs – namely coal and gas.

As TND has explained previously, an array of factors from the Ukraine war to outages at local power stations have led to the price hikes.

But federal government intervention in the energy market earlier this year has helped take the sting out of the increases for the hardest hit.

Billions in subsidies

Billions of dollars worth of energy bill subsidies have been made available to households that access federal income support, while the Victorian government is offering grants to those who compare their plan.

There are also hopeful signs on the horizon, with wholesale electricity prices falling from their 2022 peaks in recent months, suggesting price hikes next year could be much lower.

That’s cold comfort for families dealing with bill increases right now, especially when other essentials like rent and mortgage repayments are rising rapidly.

Jon Briskin, head of retail at Origin, encouraged consumers struggling with the price increases to reach out for hardship support, saying those without the capacity to pay could be helped.

“There is a range of support available for customers in our Power On hardship program including flexible payment plans, tailored debt management, energy efficiency advice, access to government grants and concessions, and referrals to financial counsellors,” he said.

“I strongly encourage anyone who is having trouble paying their energy bills to reach out today so we can help.”

With prices rising across the electricity market, Australians are being encouraged to compare their power deal to ensure they’re getting the best price available in their area.

The best place to do this are government-run comparison services, operated either by the federal or Victorian governments.

The federal Energy Made Easy website can compare plans for customers in NSW, Queensland and South Australia. Those in Victoria should visit the state government’s version of the site.  

You’ll need copies of your recent bills and also an idea of the electricity needs around your household; the websites will then use that data to compare prices across every provider.

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