It sounds too good to be true but it can actually be well worth it. We may think of terms like ‘shopping around’ to be associated with food, clothes or holidays but not really gas bills! With the price of gas bills rising year on year shopping around and switching is becoming more important to save you money and keep more of your hard earned cash for yourself.
There are many reasons why people don’t switch. It is rather unfortunate because they are as good as throwing cash down the plughole. Do any of these factors ring true with you that stop you for switching?:
1) Not enough time to devote to the activity.
2) Too complicated to switch.
3) Fear of ending up with a worse deal and paying more.
4) Not having the means to be able to compare and switch.
In the rest of this article we will put together a small guide and tips to help make the process a little easier. If you are well organised and prepared this is often half the battle, so do bear this in mind.
Preparing really is key. Whenever you attempt to compare or switch you will need certain details to hand so it’s best to have these ready. Information like personal details, current supplier, tariff you are on, how much you spend etc.
Once you have all your paperwork and before you go any further check whether any exit fees apply. These can often be sneaky things in a contract which make you pay from breaking a contract early. The rules have been altered a little in the consumers favour so look this up if it applies to you.
The process of comparing and switching can be seen as two parts. Finding the right energy company is just as important as finding the right tariff and the below may give you some things to think about when assessing this question:
* What is the customer service rating of the energy company like?
* Are like for like (or better) tariffs cheaper using someone else?
* What are the ‘green’ credentials of the energy company and how are they helping the environment?
If and when you find a better alternative you can either follow instructions on the price comparison websites or phone your selected supplier up and tell them you would like to switch.
It is important to find out the intended date of the switch and take meter readings at that time to ensure all energy usage falls with the respective suppliers.
The process of switching can take up to three weeks so don’t expect it to happen too quickly. There can also be problems up to and after the switching process including being billed by your old supplier after the switch date or the switch taking much longer than 3 weeks, so keep an eye on this. These can also be further reasons that mean people just say with their supplier and avoid the hassle, but always think that the end goal is saving money.
Once you have switched and settled, hopefully you should start seeing the monetary benefits of it quite soon. Don’t get too comfortable however, because it is likely than in a year you will need to review the situation and see whether you need to do it again (as tedious as that may sound!) Many people do it once at most then give up. This should not be aim even if it turns out that way!
In conclusion and in answer to the title post question, yes we do believe that switching tariffs (or suppliers) can save money but investigate and go into as much detail as possible.
Tip: Why not make a promise that you will treat yourself with any money saved? If that doesn’t incentivise you nothing will!