Switch Energy Suppliers

By: Keira Parker

Switching your energy supplier is one of the quickest ways to free up hundreds of pounds you didn't even know you had.

According to Ofgem, the energy regulator, more than 2.8 million people made the switch in the first seven months of the year alone.

Now with the cold winter nights drawing in, there's no better time to find a new, money-saving deal that could even get you a better standard of service, or help you do your bit for the environment with a green tariff.

Why switch?

The best deals always go to new customers so by switching to a different provider, you can take advantage of all the great discounts and savings on offer.

But it's not just by switching provider that you can save money; rather than moving to a new provider but sticking with the same tariff type, why not see if you could save even more by opting for paperless billing or moving to a green energy tariff.

There's too much choice

If you're struggling to decide which tariff or energy provider is best for you, make sure that you weigh up all the providers before signing up.

A good way of comparing gas and electricity prices is to visit a price comparison website. You won't pay any more than you would by going direct and you'll be able to easily compare all your options in one place, and sign up online.

You'll also find information to help you choose between the many tariffs on offer, and compare added extras such as boiler and cover.

Preparing to switch

Before going through with your switch, make sure that you've cleared any outstanding debts with your old supplier as they can stop the switch from going through if you still owe them money.

You'll get a letter informing you of your switchover date. Take a meter reading on this date to compare against your final bill from your old supplier and against your first bill from your new supplier, when it comes. This ensures that you don't pay for any energy usage twice.

How much does it cost to switch?

Switching to a new energy supplier is absolutely free. Not only that, but it could save you as much as ?200 on your combined gas and electricity bills.

Make sure you know what to expect from your final bill though, as you might have to pay up on any old debts, or a backlog that can sometimes occur when paying by standing order.

Other ways to cut your energy bills

As well as choosing a new energy supplier, and possibly a new tariff, you should also think about the way that you pay for your energy. Anyone not paying by direct debit should do so as soon as possible because although you won't be penalised for not doing so, most companies offer attractive incentives for ensuring that your bills are always paid on time.

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