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Energy Switching Myths Debunked

 September 19, 2014  /  Comments Off on Energy Switching Myths Debunked

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Common myths and misconceptions are holding customers back from getting better deals on their gas and electricity. According to USwitch.com, nearly half of the customers surveyed (48%) are unwilling to switch because they think they will have to arrange the move themselves. A further 38% believe switching is “too difficult”. We take a look at the top three energy switching myths and debunk common misconceptions.

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Myth 1: Your Energy Supply could be Cut

Many are not comparing energy prices and switching tariff or supplier for fear that their power supply will be cut. This is not the case. All UK suppliers use the same pipes and cables to get power to each household. If you switch suppliers, you will never be left in the dark or cold.

Ann Robinson, director of consumer policy at uSwitch.com, said: “Misconceptions are standing in the way of consumers having the confidence to make the market work for them. To bridge the gap between perception and reality we need a strong education programme that lifts the lid on the myths that plague the industry and helps consumers to navigate this notoriously complex and baffling market.”

Myth 2: You need to stay with a Big Supplier to get the Best Price

There is now more choice than ever when it comes to choosing your gas and electricity supplier. A recent probe into the industry by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) was put into motion after energy regulator Ofgem said the market does not allow fair competition.

The investigation has seen independent energy companies increase their market share from 0.2% to 7.6% while the share of the ‘big six’ energy companies – npower, British Gas, E.ON, EDF, Scottish Power and SSE – has decreased from 99.8% to 92.4%.

The latest data reveals that more people switched their gas and electricity supply to independent firms than the Big Six in May for the very first time. The news comes after the big six suppliers announced above-inflation price rises in unison and met an increase in customer complaints.

Myth 3: Switching is Complicated

Switching energy supplier is set to become much quicker, with energy companies confirming they will reduce switching times by 50 per cent by the end of the year. This will reduce the time it takes to switch energy supplier from five weeks to around two and a half weeks.

Representing the energy market, Energy UK said more than 225,000 households are switching suppliers each month. The UK’s biggest independent energy supplier, First Utility, recently announced hitting 1 million customer accounts after consistently offering cheap gas and electricity tariffs and a price promise which challenges the big six suppliers. The figures indicate consumers are now more willing to switch and are more aware of the benefits of switching.

“More and more people are voting with their feet and switching away from the Big Six to newer providers, chasing lower prices and better service. The Big Six need to raise their game if they want to keep customers,” says USwitch chief executive Steve Weller.

Debbie Faulkner is an energy blogger who champions green energy and campaigns against the monopolisation of the ‘big six’ energy companies.

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  • Published: 3 years ago on September 19, 2014
  • Last Modified: September 19, 2014 @ 8:37 am
  • Filed Under: Finance, Legal

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