Consumers can cut their fuel bills in moments, says Energy Advice Line
More than two-thirds of commercial electric price comparison consumers could save money on their energy bills almost immediately by switching suppliers, according to the Energy Advice Line.
Julian Morgan, managing director of the price comparison, switching, and advice service, said about 68% of energy users have never changed supplier and were almost certainly paying more than they needed to. “Everyone involved in the energy market – OFGEM, the government, and consumer groups – agree that the easiest and cheapest way for consumers to cut their energy bills is by changing supplier,” Mr Morgan said.
“Yet, despite this, the vast majority of consumers stick with the same supplier year after year and in the process, they lose out. Many people think that changing suppliers is too hard, but it’s actually not difficult at all. Other people think that there might be a disruption to their supply if they change providers, but that’s not true either. With energy prices ever rising, consumers need to take control of their energy arrangements. But they don’t have to do it on their own because there is help available.”
Mr Morgan said the average dual gas and electricity bill stood at a record £1,353 a year – up by 65% over the past five years – highlighting how important it was for consumers to find a deal suited to their individual circumstances.
Mr Morgan said that comparing energy tariffs could be complicated, which was why it made sense to seek the help of a reputable price comparison and switching service. However, energy firms had recently been forced by OFGEM to present information in a simpler format. Bills are now broken into two separate rates; a flat rate for gas and electricity used, and a separate daily standing charge to cover the supplier’s administration costs.
“Households that use a lot of gas and electricity might want to have a higher standing charge and a lower rate, but for those whose usage is low but want a tariff with a cheaper standing charge,” Mr Morgan said. “How to pay energy bills is also an important decision for households to make as discounts are generally offered for payment by direct debit.”
Mr Morgan said reputable and independent services like the Energy Advice Line could help customers find the right tariff by steering them through the options available, free of charge. All they had to do was go online or call the service, with the following information to hand
“New tariffs come onto the market all the time so even regular switchers might be wise to run a regular comparison to make sure they’re still on the best deal,” Mr Morgan said.