About 6 percent of households have an energy contract with prices that are above the price ceiling. While almost every energy supplier offers prices that fall below the ceiling. If the ceiling is removed, these people will be more expensive in 2024.
The price ceiling will expire at the turn of the year. This year, households paid no more than 1.45 euros per cubic meter of gas and 40 cents per kilowatt hour of electricity (up to a consumption of 1,200 m3 of gas and 2,900 kilowatt hours of electricity).
Since the spring, newly offered energy prices have fallen considerably. As a result, most fixed and variable contracts offered have had prices below the energy ceiling for several months.
But regulator ACM notes in the monthly energy monitor that 6 percent of households still have a contract with higher prices than 1.45 euros per cubic meter of gas and 40 cents per kilowatt hour of electricity. They are protected by the ceiling until the end of the year and therefore pay that maximum price. But then they will start paying the higher prices stated in the contract again.
You do pay a cancellation penalty for breaking a contract. But if the contract was concluded before June 1 of this year, it cannot be much higher than 100 to 150 euros. The cancellation fines have been higher since June, because you have to contribute to what the energy supplier misses out on due to your switch to a more favorable rate.
Even more variable energy contracts
The energy monitor also shows that in October more households still have a variable energy contract than a fixed contract. That has been the case since the beginning of this year. Before that it was always the other way around, but due to the sharp rise in energy prices, permanent contracts were temporarily no longer offered.
For example, the number of households with a permanent contract had fallen to two million in March. Three million households now have a permanent contract again, compared to four million variable. Energy experts see energy prices rising rather than falling in the coming months. If people therefore opt for security more often, permanent contracts may again be the most popular by the end of this year.