If you’ve long expected your energy company to play a part in ensuring that you’re paying the lowest possible costs on your bills – then you may be in for a shock.
According to recent research, customers are spending around £1.4 billion more than they should be on electricity and gas – indicating that consumers across the UK aren’t getting the best deal on their tariffs. On top of that, around three quarters of the people surveyed said that they haven’t received any kind of contact from their supplier about the possibility of changing tariffs in the four following the time when Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) concluded their market investigation.
In an attempt to fight back against money-hungry energy giants, Which? – the popular consumer competition watchdog, commented that they would be launching a challenge to energy companies – requiring them to show how they’re going to help their customers get better deals.
The Standard Tariff Isn’t Always the Best
At present, around 58% of the energy customers in England are on a “standard variable” tariff for their energy consumption, with one of the six large companies in the UK. Unfortunately, Which? Found that the standard tariff is often also the most expensive – and switching to a new option could save the average household anywhere up to £300 per year. The CMA responded to the Which? Poll by stating that energy companies needed to start doing more to look after their customers, but no changes have yet been made.
What many energy customers don’t realise, is that it is the responsibility of the company that they are working with to ensure that you are getting a good deal for your level of energy usage. In answer to the latest findings, Which? Requested that energy companies should begin publishing plans by the 31st of January 2017, which outline exactly how they’re going to help their customers track down the best tariff for their needs. Which? Will also be publishing a scorecard that helps to track the responses that they receive from the various energy companies across the country, and they have said the Government and regulators must be prepared to act if energy businesses fail to aid their customers.
According to Which? Managing director of legal and home services – Alex Neill:
“This is the last-chance saloon for the energy industry.”
Saving Money on Your Energy
Energy is one of the most expensive monthly bills that many homeowners pay for on a regular basis – and the unfortunate truth is that you could be paying far more than you need to depending on the amount of gas and electricity you use each day. The gap between the average prices for a standard variable energy tariff with one of the big providers in England, and the cheapest deal that’s available on the market for customers today has grown a significant amount in recent years. In fact, Which? Research has revealed that the difference could be around £111 on average. In other words, by simply switching from one of the standard variable tariffs that you’re on today to a cheaper deal, you could save around £300 per year on your energy bills.