Switch Energy Supplier the Easy Way

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Over50choices issues a ’10 Step Guide to Switching Energy Supplier’ encouraging Over 50s to shop around and save money.

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Comparing Energy Suppliers was Easy

It’s hard to believe that so many people throughout the UK still refuse to switch energy supplier

In association with their new ‘compare energy prices’ service, Over 50s personal finance specialist Over50choices has released a new guide ‘10 Steps to Switch Energy Supplier’ which takes visitors to the site through the complete process of switching; from exploring opportunities with an existing energy supplier through to making the switch and having another company provide gas and electricity services at a lower price.

The 10 steps to switching Energy Supplier are as follows:

1. Speak to your existing supplier to see if they can offer you a better deal.
2. Check whether you will be charged a fee for cancelling their service (it may still be worth you switching even if there is an exit fee, it all depends on how much you could save).
3. Get together the information you need to compare energy prices (the name of the tariff you are currently on / the amount you have spent on energy over the previous 12 months / your current method of payment / your postcode.
4. Make sure you don’t have an outstanding debt with your existing supplier as it might prevent you from switching; especially if it’s greater than £500.
5. Compare energy prices of all the UK’s residential energy suppliers by using our energy comparison table.
6. Select your preferred energy supplier and follow their instructions to apply (switching can take up to 8 weeks).
7. Receive confirmation of the switch either in writing or via the phone. You will have a 7 or 14 day cooling off period in case you change your mind.
8. Inform your existing energy supplier of the change to ensure they don’t try to block the switch for any reason.
9. Settle any outstanding energy bills and where relevant cancel standing orders or direct debits.
10. Take a meter reading for your new supplier. It’s worth keeping the reading just in case there are any final billing queries.

The ever increasing cost of energy, confusing tariffs and poor customer service have long been headline news with consumer champions like Which? taking up the battle for greater transparency and better deals for customers.

The tide now appears to be turning with new standards being introduced in 2014 that will see UK households receive simplified gas and electricity tariffs and information on the cheapest energy deals.

According to Ofgem, around three quarters of energy customers are still on standard tariffs which can be some of the most expensive on the market, so the more that can be done to highlight the ease of changing to a new provider the better as consumers stand to save thousands of pounds.

Over50choices MD Ashley Shepherd welcomes the news and the chance to make more consumers aware of the ease and necessity of switching energy supplier. “It’s hard to believe that so many people throughout the UK still refuse to switch energy supplier possibly because of confusion over tariffs or the misconception that structural work needs to take place in order to make the change. Our aim is to help people see just how straightforward switching is and that all the work is done by the energy provider.”

Ashley goes on to say that there have been instances reported where customers have experienced billing problems after switching but states that this shouldn’t prevent people from making the move. “Keep copies of how much you have paid over previous years and always take meter readings. Relying on estimates could mean you are either out of pocket or could be hit with a large bill in the near future”.

In addition to providing information on finding the cheapest energy supplier, Over50choices also helps Over 50s with other aspects of personal finance.

For more information on switching energy supplier, visit http://www.over50choices.co.uk.

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Ashley Shepherd
since: 04/2011
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