Over BGN 1,000 per month for natural gas households
Sofia residents will pay BGN 400 more for heating for the entire season
With air conditioning is the most profitable
We will be paying killer heating bills in the coming winter. Regardless of whether you heat with steam, gas, wood or electricity, costs will be significantly higher than last year. For example, Sofia residents will pay 27% more for heating than last winter. If last year the heating bill was BGN 250, now it will be BGN 320.
Heating with air conditioning and heating will be the cheapest, according to “Trud” calculations based on the current prices of electricity, heating, wood, propane-butane, pellets and briquettes. For heating an 80 square meter apartment in Sofia during one of the coldest months, for which last year the bill was BGN 320, in the coming winter the household will have to pay BGN 405, or BGN 85. more. To heat the same apartment with gas or diesel fuel for just one month, more than BGN 1,000 will be needed.
The new heating price came into effect on July 1, 2022, when the price of gas was significantly lower. In principle, the current price of heating should be valid until July 1, 2023. But the Association of Heating Companies has already stated that from January 1, a new increase in the price of heating by at least 60% is necessary due to the increase in gas prices. A double increase in heating prices may also be necessary from January 1, 2023, if gas prices continue to rise and the government does not compensate heating companies. Then the heating bills will become prohibitive for a large part of the people. NSI data show that 27% of people do not have enough money to heat their homes well. In the coming year, this share will grow significantly. From July 1, the price of heating and hot water was increased by nearly 30% on average, and for Sofia the increase is by 40%. In addition, VAT for heating and natural gas was reduced from 20% to 9%. As a result, the increase in the heating bills of the residents of Sofia will be about 27%, and the average increase for the country is 18%. For example, if last winter for the entire heating season the heating bill was BGN 1,500, next winter the household will have to pay over BGN 1,900, or over BGN 400 more. This makes about BGN 70 extra for each of the months during which the boiler works. At current prices, in the coldest months the bill will exceed BGN 400, and in the warmer months it can be half as much. But if the price of steam doubles as of January 1, the bills will be higher than a minimum wage, which the interim government has announced will propose to be BGN 770.
Heating alternatives are not cheap either. Heating using a gas or diesel boiler is already extremely expensive, and the reason for this is the increase in fuel prices. And we can only guess what the price of gas will be in the winter. Using an electric boiler or propane-butane for heating is cheaper, but the costs will also be significant. It is cheaper to use firewood or eco-briquettes. As the costs for heating with eco-briquettes are approximately the same as with heating.
The most advantageous alternative for heating is the air conditioner. The reason for this is that modern air conditioners are extremely energy-saving and the ratio between released heat and consumed energy reaches 5 to 1. However, this depends on the energy class of the air conditioner. The most economical air conditioners are the hyperinverter ones. They have the highest energy transformation coefficients for heating and cooling. The initial investment for them is high, but it pays off over time. Heating with high-end air conditioners is almost twice as cheap as heating, and for an 80 square meter apartment at current prices, it is less than BGN 200 per month.
The use of air conditioners is now profitable because the price of electricity for the household is determined by the KEVR and has been increased by just over 3% since July 1. But in the Recovery Plan, developed by the previous “Petkov” cabinet, it is written that households will also switch to the free electricity market, and this should be done in two stages – from 2023 and from 2025. If this happens, in the next year, the price of household electricity may increase several times, and heating with air conditioning will no longer be so profitable.
Promotional prices start at BGN 900.
Boom in sales of air conditioners
A boom in sales of air conditioners is reported by traders, after the price of heating has risen by 30% on average in the country, and it became clear that from January 1 there will likely be another price increase. People are giving up heating systems en masse and are looking for other options to heat their homes. The cheapest heating option is with air conditioning. The prices of appliances are BGN 200-300 higher than last year, according to Trud’s inspection of large retail chains.
The prices of inverter air conditioners start at around BGN 900, with a promotion for devices with a power of around 2600 kilowatts and with very good energy-saving characteristics. The most expensive devices cost many times more, and their price can reach over BGN 6,000. Of course, they are also many times more powerful and very economical.
The price reaches BGN 200 per cubic meter
They are looking for more firewood
It’s cheapest to cut it yourself
Twice as much interest in buying firewood, forest farms report.
Huge interest in the purchase of firewood in the last month has been reported by forest farms throughout the country. Almost twice as many people have decided to heat themselves in this way compared to last winter, the Ministry of Agriculture states categorically. The price has also doubled compared to the previous winter. As the reason for the increase, logging farms and wholesalers point to the growth of transport costs and those for wood extraction.
The cheapest way to get firewood is to cut and transport it yourself or, as this option is known, to buy wood “by the root” from forestry farms. In this type of sale, people cut down marked trees themselves and transport them to their home. Thus, the price per cube is about BGN 10-15 for conifers and BGN 20-30 per cube of deciduous species.
In the central warehouses of the big cities, the price of wood is between BGN 70 and BGN 100 per cubic meter, but without transport. If it is included, the prices increase to BGN 140 per cubic meter. It is most expensive to buy wood from private resellers who, together with transport, offer the wood at prices up to BGN 180-200 per cubic meter. Last year, the price was twice as low – about BGN 90-100 per cubic meter.
They enter the election campaign
Mayors complain about irregular deliveries
Tsvetelina Georgieva, Shumen
Rositsa Nikolova, Sliven
Daniela Farhi, Varna
The mayors of the settlements of the Shumen region en masse put before the regional governor Hristo Hristov the problem of the delay in the supply of firewood. Village leaders explain that supplies are irregular, and this creates social tension among the people. Gorski are adamant that the work on the delivery of wood has not stopped.
The firewood hysteria is like the oil hysteria over rumors of ever-increasing prices, forest officials said. A concrete example of resupplying people with wood came from the State Forestry in Kazanlak. The requested quantities in 2021 are 6,500 cc, and for this year they are 9,500 cc.
The state sells at prices of BGN 65-100 per cubic meter, but market prices vary around BGN 170-180. In order to prevent speculation, inspections are expected from the Directorate of the Ministry of the Interior-Stara Zagora.
The topic of expensive wood also entered the election campaign. In Sliven, the regional governor Mincho Afuzov held a meeting with the forest chiefs and the management of the OD of the Ministry of the Interior. The reason for her were the doubts that the names of certain political parties’ voters fall into the lists of socially weak people who will receive wood at preferential prices.
There is also a sharp jump in the demand for firewood in Varna. They buy the most wood directly from forest warehouses at a price of BGN 66 per cubic meter. On the free market, the cube reaches 190 BGN. However, they also make lists, because the price of ecological pellets has doubled in a year and continues to grow. A month ago, the stock exchanges sold the ton for BGN 830, now it is BGN 980 and it is difficult to find available quantities.
4-5 tons are needed for the whole winter
Suppliers make customer lists
Cheaper for the socially weak
The supply of wood is a problem due to insufficient quantities.
LABOR, Veliko Tarnovo
The prices of firewood in Veliko Tarnovo have risen dramatically. The cube of wood now costs BGN 180, while in June it cost BGN 150. The supply of wood is also a problem due to insufficient quantities. Transportation to homes is paid for separately. The service costs between BGN 30 and BGN 80, depending on the remoteness of the settlement.
High demand has forced companies to make wish lists. Deliveries are delayed by at least a month.
Firewood for the socially weak is almost twice as cheap. The cube has an average price of BGN 60 for the area. However, for them, people have to hire transport because the state forest farms do not offer on-site delivery.
Logging for the requested quantities starts in September, and the initiative is carried out by the five state forestry farms in the district.
The organization of supplying the population with firewood is a commitment of the mayors, who were involved in drawing up lists of the socially weak.
There is also growth in the purchase of pellets. Their price has jumped from 830 to 900-1000 BGN per ton.
The industry explains this with the shortage of wood, which is the basic raw material for their production. The interest in pellets is great because of their combustion efficiency and environmental friendliness.
“To heat a house for the entire winter season, 4-5 tons are needed. We made a request for such a quantity already at the end of last winter and until now the fuel has not been delivered to us”, said a resident of the Veliko Tarnovo village of Samovodene.
Municipal buildings will use electricity
They go crazy because of bombastic prices
Many people switch to heating with air conditioners.
Svetlana Vasileva, Blagoevgrad
Maria Kehaiova, Burgas
The inhabitants of Pirinsko will switch to electric heating in the winter, due to the prohibitive prices of gas and pellets. They mainly buy air conditioners or convectors. They take out loans or pay them off.
There is no central heating in the region and thousands have switched to gas heating in recent years. Now people feel harmed because they are still repaying the loans taken for the gas plants. Another large part of the population is heated with pellet heating, but the calculations show that it will also come out “salty”. The lowest price for pellets is BGN 800 per ton and this shocked consumers. Most take BGN 4-5 thousand loans to ensure the heat for the winter, while others give up and switch to electricity. Even public buildings are turning to electric heating instead of gas because the bills are prohibitive. Such an example is the municipality of Razlog, which this season will be heated with air conditioners.
Air conditioners are also being bought en masse in Burgas. People are afraid that heating and gas will be very expensive, so even though many households are on gas, they buy air conditioners to be prepared for the winter. “In no time, they will decide which heating they will choose. Everyone is waiting to see what the first electricity and gas bills will be, and depending on the amounts, to determine what they will use”, revealed residents of Burgas.