Northern Ireland is very different from other parts of the United Kingdom in that about 68% of NI households heat their homes using heating oil. Because of this, oil prices in NI are a key component of household budgets, and it’s essential that consumers are able to access the best deals.


So what might affect oil prices in NI in 2017, and what can you do to ensure you get the best available price?

The crude oil price has been relatively low during most of 2016 but started rising in December. As usual, the commentators cannot agree on where the price will end up because the politics of the Middle East are so complex. But at the moment, predictions appear to be for some price rises but not a massive spike.


Heating oil prices in NI vary from one day to another because the price you pay changes in line with the underlying price of the crude oil. Obviously, the weather also affects the price of oil, as there is more demand in winter, and the colder the winter, the more oil is used. High demand tends to push prices up, so it’s a good idea to buy earlier in the season if possible.


With over 250 suppliers, consumers can have a difficult time figuring out who is offering the best deal. However, a key factor that affects oil prices in NI is the efficiency of the business that is supplying the oil. Obviously, the more efficient a business is, the lower its margins can be, which means that it is able to offer better deals to consumers.


Size also matters, because a successful company that has a lot of customers can get better deals from its suppliers as it’s buying in larger quantities. This allows the business to offer better prices to its customers – and that means it gets more customers and can get still better deals.


Another important aspect is delivery – some suppliers quote what seem to be good prices, but then you find out that they can’t deliver before you run out. So look for a company that combines an efficient website that allows you to compare prices with fast deliveries and low prices. ValueOils features all of these along with the best prices in NI. Talk to their friendly team, who will advise you on the best deal for your household.