Bills increasing in price today – from council tax to prescriptions & TV license

Brits can expect to see their bills rise today.

Despite the financial pressure many are experiencing during lockdown, some utilities and subscription fees have increased this Price Hike Thursday.

Broadband, prescriptions, council tax, vehicle exist duty and dozens more bills have also risen with inflation.

Brits can also expect to fork out more on gas, electricity, mobile phone bills and even Sky TV packages.

According to Money.co.uk, this inflation adds £5.95billion onto the cost of living – or £206 per household on average.

Sarah Coles, money analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “One of the biggest price rises comes in the form of council tax rises, which are up an average of 4.4% to £1,898 for band D properties. That’s an average increase of £6.75 a month.”

She added: “It’s also worth watching out for energy price rises if you’re on the default tariff. The energy price cap is rising £96 a year to £1,138 – which reverses all the price cuts we saw during the pandemic.”

Money.co.uk spokesperson James Andrews added: “Although some of the changes seem small, they add up to a £206 extra for each household, which is hardly ideal given the particularly turbulent financial year many of us have had.”

“Be constantly on the lookout for new offers, and don’t hesitate to switch providers if your contract is up and a better deal can be found elsewhere.”

The Mirror have compiled a handy list of price hikes you can expect to see from today – check it out below.

Prescriptions

From today, millions of Brit will pay more for their prescriptions as new rates come into force across England.

It’s thought that the cost of a single prescription will reach £10.15 by 2025 prompting calls for a review into free medication.

The cost of NHS over-the-counter medication will rise from £9.15 to £9.35 today.

The Coalition, a group of 20 organisations campaigning to abolish prescription charges for people with long-term conditions, raised concerns that many people with long-term health problems are not collecting their prescriptions due to the cost.

On top of the rise in cost of a single prescription, pre-payment certificates will also jump up.

The certificates allow people to get as many prescriptions as they need for a set price – in 2020 this was £105.90 and will go up to £108.10 this year.

TV Licence

The annual television licence fee will rise on April 1 taking the total annual cost to £159 a year.

The increase comes eight months after three million over-75s lost their entitlement to free TV licences following a funding row between the BBC and the government.

The new fee works out at £3.06 per week or £13.25 per month.

Those buying or renewing a licence after April 1, 2021, will have to pay the new licence charge.

Those already paying in instalments will continue to pay £157.50 until their licence is up for renewal.

The cost of an annual black and white licence will also rise from £53.00 to £53.50.

Air Passenger Duty

Air Passenger Duty (APD) on long-haul flights will increase again, despite calls from the industry to freeze the aviation tax.

The rates for long-haul economy services from the UK will increase in line with RPI by £2, totalling £84 per passenger from April 2022.

Meanwhile, those travelling in premium economy, business and first class will have to pay £5 more – £185 in total.

However, APD on short-haul flights will remain frozen at previous levels for the next two tax years, regardless of class, the government confirmed.

Council tax

Residents in more than 100 parts of the UK will see their council tax bills rise to over £2,000 a year from today as council tax hikes kick in for almost every household.

A typical Band D property will see the levy rise by £80 to £1,898 a year.

The rise equates to a 4.4% increase, despite latest inflation being at 0.4%.

Enter your postcode and select your Band below to see how council tax will change in your area.

Energy

Fifteen million households will see their gas and electricity bills soar by almost £100 a year from today as the new energy price cap rate kicks in.

This is the top amount suppliers can charge customers on default or standard variable tariffs.

Based on average use, it means at least 11 million homes will see annual dual fuel bills rise by £96 to £1,138.

A further four million on pre-payment meters will pay £1,156 for the year – £87 more.

To avoid getting stung, use comparison websites and auto-switching tools to swerve standard variable tariffs (SVTs).

Water

In good news for bill payers, average household water and sewerage bills in England and Wales are set to fall by around £2 a year from this month.

This takes the average bill from £410 to £408, according to Water UK.

However, in some parts of the UK, some households could see average increases of up to £14 per year.

Sarah Coles, money analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, said some people may be able to beat the hike by switching to a water meter.

“It’s worth checking what your water company is up to, because some are raising prices from April,” she said.

“It’s a good time to take stock and consider whether it’s worth getting a water meter. As a rough rule of thumb, if you have more bedrooms at home than people, you could save by switching to a meter."

Mobile phone bills

Mobile phone bills are to rise by up to 4.5% this month, which will impact the majority of Brits.

Networks including BT, EE, Three and Vodafone have announced price hikes.

Those who signed up with Three as a pay-monthly customer or renewed their pay-monthly contract on or after October 29, 2020, will see their bills increase by 4.5%.

Customers who joined the network between May 2015 and October 29, 2020 will see their bills go up by 1.4%.

Vodafone will hike prices by up to £45 from April for customers who signed up or renewed their mobile contract after December 9, 2020.

EE is also upping prices by £24 per year for those who took out a deal between January 11, 2019 and September 1, 2020.

Speak to your provider if you cannot afford the rise – firms are being urged to be more lenient due to Covid.

Alternatively, haggle for a lower deal and switch away if it doesn’t work.

Road tax

The amount of road tax you pay from today will rise depending on your car’s CO2 emissions.

Cars that emit zero grams per km of CO2 won’t have to pay anything, while petrol and most diesel drivers (including hybrid models) that put out between 1g and 50g per km will be required to pay £10 for the first year.

Motors that emit between 51g and 5g per km will continue to pay £25 for the first year.

However, drivers with cars that generate between 76g and 150g per km of CO2 will see an increase of £5 more this year – taking their annual car tax bill to £220.

Broadband and TV bills

Sky is upping bills by up to £72 a year for millions of broadband and TV customers from today. This will be followed by landline price rises in May.

Meanwhile, Virgin Media is hiking prices by £44 per year for some households, and BT prices are going up by £24.

Check for clauses first before making any switches – if you're out of contract, you can leave penalty-free.

Those locked in a deal should call their provider to discuss options if they are struggling.

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