Almost half of households switch energy supplier


Almost half of households switch energy supplier


Scots are switching on to lower energy costs, new research has revealed.

A recent report from Energy Switch Guarantee – an organisation established by industry body Energy UK, revealed that 48 per cent – one in five people – switched energy suppliers in a bid to secure a better deal.

The figure is higher than switch rates for other utility services including broadband and telephone provider. Just 35 per cent changed home insurance, 31 per cent opted for a new broadband supplier while 25 per cent and 14 per cent changed their telephone provider and bank respectively.

Price was the deciding factor in changing supplier for 79 per cent of respondents while more than eight in 10 people who made the switch in the last four years were happy with the process. The report also highlights that a third of those who haven’t switched (39 per cent) are happy with their current supplier’s service or with the price of their tariff (34 per cent).

Meanwhile, of the over 65-year-olds that haven’t switched supplier in the past four years, two in five (41 per cent) said they would only switch if their current supplier’s customer service deteriorated.

The research was conducted by Populus, following Ofgem’s announcement of the energy price cap increase that came into effect in April. When asked about the energy price cap, seven in 10 (70 per cent) energy said that they had heard about it but four in five (78 per cent) said that it had no impact on their switching behaviour.

Switching energy made simple

According to reports a record 5.8 million customers across the UK changed electricity supplier, securing a better deal and highlighting that it really does pay to shop around.

Understandably the thought of searching for the best energy deal can not only be daunting but also time consuming and complicated. However, taking the leap and changing supplier is easier said than done and can ultimately save time in the long run. Organisations such as Neptis UK in association with Orbit Energy offering peace of mind that your energy management is taken care of with little fuss, the number of people on the search for change has never been greater.

Switching suppliers is easier than you think – all you need is your postcode, a recent energy bill or the ability to answer a few simple lifestyle or home queries and 10 minutes. What’s more, it can all be done online, with savings of hundreds of pounds just a click away.

Five steps to savings

Research is key

First things first, before taking the plunge and changing supplier it’s important to consider just exactly which company and tariff will work best for you. Make use of accredited energy comparison websites to ensure you get a free, informative and comprehensive view of what’s on offer.

Postcode search

The price of gas and electricity is set regionally. It’s important to run a postcode search to establish which plans and offers are available to you.

Track your usage

Keep note of your household’s energy consumption details is vital to ensure you get the most accurate comparison results. Be sure to check out your most recent energy bill, otherwise, you can estimate costs by answering simple lifestyle questions.

Making your choice

With so many plans on offer the most difficult part of changing energy supplier can often be selecting then plan best suited to you. Utilise filters to see the plans the comparison site can switch you to and remember to review fixed energy rate plans or review plans without an early exit / cancellation fee.

Confirmation of change

Once you’re happy with a selected plan the final step is to confirm the switch by providing your bank and contact details. The entire switch process will take 17 days, however, you will still have full use of your energy supply in the meantime. Your new supplier will inform your old supplier to inform of the change and will contact you following a two-week cooling off period with additional information about your service and switchover date.

Don’t forget

When switching supplier, it’s important to remember the following:

  • You don’t need to worry about being billed twice if you have cancelled your direct debit. The companies will have agreed a switch over date.
  • There won’t be any interruption to your supply during the change.
  • You have a 14-day cooling off period should you decide you no longer wish you switch – all you need to do is inform your suppliers.
  • If you’re unhappy with your new plan, remember you can change suppliers every 28 days. However, it’s important to be aware of cancellation charges.

If you are struggling to keep up with your utility bills and need more information about the options available to you in dealing with debts, you can always speak confidentially with one of our friendly advisors on 0808 2234 102.

You could write off up to 75% of unsecured debt with our debt assistant.

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