The price spiral keeps turning. More and more municipal utilities will raise prices in the coming year. Rising energy costs are increasingly becoming an additional burden for households and companies. FOCUS online says which public utilities are affected and what you can do about it.

A number of municipal utilities want to almost double the price of electricity from January 1st. If the households do not raise the payments on account, the arrears debacle threatens in autumn 2023. For many households, the prices are a heavy additional burden. But who is affected?

Stadtwerke München has been sending out notifications for weeks, informing customers about an imminent price increase. From January 1, many households will then pay between 54 and 63 cents per kilowatt hour, depending on the tariff.

The reason for the price increase is the high retail prices, increased fees for the network operators and the higher statutory levies. Stadtwerke München is the basic supplier in the state capital, but has nationwide distribution.

E.ON Bayern also announced hefty price increases from January 1, 2022 in a letter. In a specific example, the kilowatt hour increases to 57 cents. Before that, the price was 39 cents.

Not an isolated case!

Stadtwerke Konstanz are also raising prices by 100 percent. The kilowatt hour breaks the sound barrier of 30 cents. At Stadtwerke Elmsdorf, there is also a substantial price adjustment. Customers of the regional basic supplier have to pay 80 percent more for electricity.

More than 100 municipal and municipal utilities throughout Germany have announced price adjustments from January 1, 2023. This affects more than 400 tariffs and around six million households, as the comparison portal Check24 also confirms in a press release.

The energy suppliers include the municipal utilities of Ahlen, Amberg, Annweiler, Arnstadt, Bad Bramstedt, Bad Nauheim, Bad Saulgau, Bayreuth, Bielefeld, Bochum, Brandenburg, Bruchsal, Castrop-Rauxel, Dessau, Döbeln, Dormagen, Dreieich, Essen, Flensburg, Frankfurt (Oder), Garbsen, Garbsen, Gießen, Gießen, Güstrow, Hamm, Husum, Iserlohn, Jülich, Lauterbach, Leipzig, Meerbuch, Merseburg, Neubrandenburg, Neuruppin, Neustrelitz, Oranienburg, Osterholz, Pforzheim, Pfullingen, Potsdam, Quedlinburg, Rheinsberg , Roth, Schwedt, Schweinfurt, Sternberg, Villingen-Schwenningen, Warendorf, Wasserburg, Wedel and Willich.

A small ray of hope for the affected households: the electricity price brake is coming!

The federal government has decided on an electricity price brake from January 2023.

It caps the electricity price at 40 cents per kilowatt hour and applies to 80 percent of the previous year’s consumption. For industrial customers, the cap is 13 cents for 70 percent of historical consumption.

Many people could not benefit at all from the electricity price brake. This applies, for example, when the electricity price per kilowatt hour is less than 40 cents.

If the price of electricity doubles, it can threaten the existence of low-income earners.

Read the price hike letter carefully. Pay close attention to what you should pay more for electricity each month. Ideally, adjust the down payment. In extreme cases, you face a hefty additional payment at the end of 2023.

Compare whether the energy supplier may have already raised the discount. If the price for the kilowatt hour of electricity has increased, the down payment should also be adjusted. But! If the electricity provider has also increased the discount in addition to the price adjustment in such a way that this results in an additional price increase, the price increase could possibly be ineffective.

So react immediately.

Do you have a price guarantee contract? Then the adjustment is also ineffective, says the Federal Association of Consumers.

If the provider remains stubborn: terminate the direct debit procedure and contact the consumer advice center or a lawyer.

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It is definitely worth checking whether there is a cheaper tariff. This can either be with the same provider or you can inquire online about possible alternatives. Note that basic suppliers often have lower tariffs than supposedly cheap providers.

Comparison portals such as the electricity price comparison from FOCUS online, a call to the energy supplier or simple research can help.

“The prices in the basic electricity and gas supply are currently lower than the prices for special contracts,” explains Rico Dulinski from the Brandenburg Consumer Center in Potsdam.

Not every basic supplier is represented with its basic tariff in common comparison portals.

To be on the safe side, you can simply enter the keyword “basic provider” and the postal code of your location in the search engine. The energy providers – including municipal utilities and municipal utilities – would have to publish data sheets with their prices on their website.

If the money is not enough to pay the higher electricity bill, contact the relevant city or district administration, specifically the housing benefit authority, as soon as possible.

There you can apply for housing benefit or a rent subsidy. Application forms are available in paper form or online on the city or county website.

The authority responds to the application with a written decision within eight weeks.

If you had a very high consumption, you should step on the current brake immediately.

A married couple receives an unbelievable letter: They are to pay almost 37,000 euros a month for electricity from now on. Only after research by the “Rheinische Post” did the couple receive the redeeming message. Your electricity provider has made a serious mistake.

The municipal utilities are increasing their prices significantly: From January 2023, it will be twice as expensive for consumers. The electricity price brake dampens that – but only a little.

The federal and state governments have discussed the design of an electricity price brake and a gas price cap, which are to apply from January and February respectively. FOCUS online shows how much you could save as a result – and who, despite the billions in aid, gets nothing.

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