Is your energy supplier good to you? Or do you find yourself regularly switching and searching for ways to keep your energy bills down?
Here are some highlights of your comments…
The switching game
When talking about energy bills, we found there are a number of serial energy switchers on Which? Conversation.
Jackie, for instance, appears to have saved hundreds by staying one step ahead of the game:
‘I switched a couple of times over the past few years, I was paying dual fuel with British Gas, which was £175 per month. I switched to Scottish Power, because of a small saving and got my bills down to £167 per month. After two months with them, the price went up to the same as BG. I switched again to EDF, and up until last month, paid £88 per month. That was two years ago. They are now putting payments up to £92 per month, which I think is fair. There are four adults here in a three-bed house. I also had a £200 rebate on my last bill.’
We’ve also heard of impressive investigative work going on to tackle energy bills. Which? Conversation commenter, Sean, detailed the findings of his work:
‘I have managed to monitor and record my energy bills over a three-year period and have concluded that the cheapest way is to only put on heating when you come home from work, and not keep it on a constant low, as this is not economical (neither is a Hive, Nest etc…). I have saved over £100 p/month so far. What I have also found is changing light bulbs to LED definitely saves money and if you have an open fire, install a wood burner, as this makes a huge difference.’
However, for others, there’s little appetite to play the switching game, as we’ve also heard from plenty of people who are quite happy to stick with their provider.
John Woodhead explained:
‘I have been with SSE for the past four years, three years on prepay meters and then changed to open meters on a two-year fixed tariff. The change over was free of charge and with the help of their customer service, was completed without any problems.’
And Mike Palmer added:
‘My wife and I have been with British Gas for our electric and gas for the past 28 years, since, in fact, we set up home together. I have been asked, bullied and begged to change my provider, but BG have always given me the very best service. Their staff are friendly and will chat within minutes of asking to talk with someone – something other companies do not or cannot do, some taking up to two hours to get back to you.’
But while John and Mike have had positive experiences, your comments prove that’s not necessarily the norm.
In our annual energy customer satisfaction survey, we quizzed nearly 9,000 people about their experiences with their energy company and ranked 23 energy suppliers in GB and six in Northern Ireland from best to worst.
And once again it shows that the Big Six (British Gas, EDF Energy, E.ON UK, Npower, Scottish Power and SSE) continue to lag behind some of the smaller suppliers.
In November 2016, we launched our energy campaign after our research found that energy providers simply weren’t doing enough to help move their customers off Standard Variable Tariffs, which are often the most expensive.
We’ve been calling on energy providers to outline a plan on how they will help these customers switch tariffs, setting the challenge of producing this plan by the end of January. So far we’ve seen signs of movement, but still no concrete plans…
What do you think of your energy supplier? How do you think they could serve you better? And do you have any energy-saving tips to share?
What's most important to you when choosing an energy supplier?
Cost and value for money (89%, 407 Votes)
Customer service (5%, 24 Votes)
Simple and easy billing (3%, 14 Votes)
None of the above... tell us in the comments (2%, 11 Votes)
Total Voters: 456