Why people don’t switch energy suppliers

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By AdFeatures | Tuesday, August 14, 2012, 10:54


According the Ofgem, the government energy regulator, most households in the UK have never switched their gas and electricity suppliers or even carried out an energy comparison. As a result they are being charged substantially higher prices than they could be and the energy suppliers are making an extra £3.5 billion in profits every year. That is a lot of money that we, as energy consumers, are throwing away. With annual profits soaring well above £16 billion a year, those cats are fat enough without us making them even fatter.

Only 60% of gas and electricity consumers have ever switched suppliers, and one of the reasons is previous misspelling by energy supplier salesmen. Although these salesmen are no longer allowed to come to your door, they still frequent supermarket floors and similar places. Naturally they are interested in just one thing; making a sale and collecting the sales commission; they are not interested in finding the best deal for you. As a result many people found that they ended up paying more for their gas and electricity than they had previously, and that they were locked in to a long term contract.

This didn’t just affect a few people; according to Ofgem around 1.5 million consumers have been affected in this way the Citizens Advice Bureau has received hundreds of calls from customers who believe that energy company salesmen have given them the wrong advice. Such cases have enjoyed a huge amount of publicity in the popular press and as a result people have been put off switching.

The advice is to never listen to energy custom salesmen, and especially not when you are confronted in a supermarket and presented with various scenarios that bear little resemblance to your actual situation. Without looking at your energy bills you are unlikely to know how much energy you consume and the amount that you pay for it, so the salesman will fill in the blanks with figures that make what he has to offer appear beneficial to you when the reverse is the real case.

Nowadays nothing could be easier than switching successfully and saving a great deal of money. All you need do is visit an energy price comparison website, enter a few details about your current supplier and the amount of gas and electricity you use, and you will see how much you can save. Most people find that they can save well over a hundred pounds a year and some people find that they can save several hundred. Once you have found a better deal, then you can switch to it directly online; it takes only minutes to do so.



  • Profile image for fghtk

    Misspelling or Misselling, that is the question?

    By fghtk at 14:22 on 15/08/12

  • Profile image for alan_r

    I changed earlier this year and it was such a complicated procedure that even now I am not sure I am actually saving any money. All I believe you are doing by changing is swapping from one bunch of rip off merchants to another.

    By alan_r at 11:57 on 14/08/12

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