Rates for housing and municipal services in Russia will be increased in advance

Published by
Peter Kavinsky

The annual indexation of the utility rates will take place on December 1, 2022.

A picture: Julia PYKHALOVA

The traditional annual indexation of utility rates is now waiting in advance. From July 1, 2023, it was postponed to December 1, 2022. This is reported by the Ministry of Economic Development.

That is, it turns out that in 2022 there will be a double increase in energy bills. For the first time, rates were indexed, as usual, from 1 July. But, as the ministry explains, rates will be frozen for 2023. And the next increase will not take place until July 1, 2024.

On average across the country, the rate increase should be within 9% from 1 December. According to estimates of the Ministry of Economic Affairs, for a conditionally average family of three people, this is an additional 324 rubles per month.

As of July 1, 2022, utility rates have increased by 2.9-6.5% depending on the region. A specific breakdown by region as of December 1 has not yet been announced, usually it is approved by a government decree.

Recall that the government approves the limit indices for increasing utility rates for the population. That is, the “ceiling” as a percentage on average. The payment for housing and communal services of a given family can “weighten” more than 9% or less – but on average everyone should get the figure announced by the government. And one more important point. We are talking specifically about utilities – for electricity, water, heating, etc. On the payroll we also have housing benefits (for maintenance and repair of housing) – these are not included in these percentages.

Why was it necessary to raise utility rates earlier than usual? The Ministry of Economic Affairs explains that this is necessary to upgrade the common infrastructure.

Indeed, as experts confirm, there is a problem here – in connection with the sharp rise in prices for building materials last year, many repair plans came to an end.

Here’s how they comment on the situation in the Ministry of Construction.

– Indexation of utility rates is a traditional procedure provided for by law. It is carried out in the context of annual inflation, which is reflected in the cost of resources needed to provide utilities, repair networks and facilities, as well as the cost of boiler house fuel, water purification reagents, – told reporters Deputy Minister of Construction and Housing Alexei Yeresko. – It has been established by law that rate changes should not exceed inflation, while in recent years a situation has persisted where rate increases have been significantly lower than inflation and price increases for related goods and services. Tariff indexation, in turn, is driven by the need for timely financing of business operations for uninterrupted supply of utilities.

What to do with the fact that the incomes of the Russians have not grown much lately and not only housing and municipal services are becoming more expensive?

Alexey Yeresko also recalled that a number of categories of residents of our country can apply for compensation and subsidies for energy bills:

Certain categories of citizens, such as large families, retirees, veterans, combatants, may be reimbursed for the cost of paying housing and utilities at the expense of the respective budgets. Assistance is also provided to people who spend more than the established standard to pay for housing – the so-called maximum allowable share of the citizen’s expenditure on paying for housing and utilities. On average across the country, this standard is at the level of 22% of the total family budget, but each region sets specific indicators separately.

Peter Kavinsky

Peter Kavinsky is the Executive Editor at cablefreetv.org

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