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The Energy Switch Guarantee: a simple guide

It’s a promise from your energy supplier that any charges you face due to a switching error will be rectified and compensated for. The Energy Switch Guarantee makes the energy market fairer, so you can switch providers with confidence and get a great value energy deal to boot. Here’s how it works…

It’s a promise from your energy supplier that any charges you face due to a switching error will be rectified and compensated for. The Energy Switch Guarantee makes the energy market fairer, so you can switch providers with confidence and get a great value energy deal to boot. Here’s how it works…

Peter Earl
From the Energy team
5
minute read
Do you know someone who could benefit from this article?
Posted 13 JULY 2020

What is the Energy Switch Guarantee?

The Energy Switch Guarantee is a voluntary set of promises that energy suppliers can sign up to, designed to give you peace of mind when switching supplier. It’s a commitment that the switch will be simple and easy, and that any mistakes that might happen as a result will be put right – for example, if you’re charged because of a switching error, the problem will be resolved and paid for by the supplier at fault.

The guarantee was developed by Energy UK, the trade association for the UK energy industry, and is backed by the Government. The goal is that consumers aren’t discouraged from switching because they think it will be difficult, so you’re free to decide on the most suitable energy supplier for you. If you’ve learned your economics, you’ll know that choice is important for markets to work well.

From the customer perspective, the Energy Switch Guarantee could give you the confidence to switch. You might find an energy provider that will save you money or give you better customer service. 

So what guarantees do I actually get?

All the companies signed up to the Energy Switch Guarantee promise easy switching with a series of simple guarantees through the whole process. 

Hassle-free

  • There won’t be any disruption to your service, as all energy providers use the same pipes and wires. If you’re getting a new meter, such as a smart meter or pre-payment meter, your new supplier will arrange a suitable date and explain how the process works while it’s installed.
  • Switching is free (unless you have any cancellation fees for leaving your existing contract early).
  • It should take no more than 21 days to organise and implement your switch. If you are opting for dual fuel, providers will try to switch both on the same date, but it might not always happen that way.  
  • Your new supplier won’t need to visit your home to make the switch (unless you agree otherwise for example for a new meter).  
  • Your new supplier will be the one that tells your old supplier that you’re leaving, so you don’t have to. But if you have any questions about your bill, final payment or refund, then you’ll have to contact them yourself.

Signing up

  • You’ll be sent details of your new agreement. If you get cold feet, you have 14 days to change your mind and you'll stay with your current provider
  • You won't be billed twice for the same energy – your new and current providers will work together to make sure this doesn't happen, but you will need to give an accurate meter reading to your new provider. This is also the case if you have a smart meter – you will still need to provide your new supplier with a meter reading. Gas and electric meters explained 

Issues or delays

  • If there are any problems making the switch your new provider is responsible for contacting you as soon as possible and for sorting it out.

Billing – your current provider's responsibility

  • You’ll get a final bill from your old supplier no more than six weeks after the switch has been made.  
  • If your original supplier owes you any money, they’ll refund it within 14 days of the final bill being sent. Your current energy provider must have either your bank account details or your name and address.

Have all energy suppliers signed up to the Energy Switch Guarantee?

Not all of them, but all the big names. The Big Six energy suppliers have signed up, along with a selection of smaller suppliers.  The guarantee now covers 90% of the market. You can see the participating suppliers at the Energy Switch Guarantee website.

Exactly how much could I save by switching?

Energy prices are set by location, so where you live will be a key factor in how much you could save. It’ll also depend on how much energy you use. As a rough guide, half the people using our comparison site found they could save up to £345** by switching energy providers.

**Where a saving can be achieved 50% of people could achieve a saving of £345.00 on their dual fuel energy costs based on Compare the Market data in February 2020.

How do I know if I’m getting a good deal?

Well, that’s where we come in. Just use our energy comparison service and answer a few questions about your supplier, your tariff and how much energy you use – you can find all the information you need on your latest bill. You’ll be able to search cheap energy deals and find the right one for your needs.

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