Even if you don’t follow the news closely, you’ll probably have heard that the oil price has fallen significantly recently. In fact, it has more than halved since the same time in 2014. This should be good news for your gas and electricity bills.
Why is that? Well, when the price of oil falls so typically do the prices at which your energy supplier buys their materials. This is reflected in what is known as the wholesale pricesfor gas and electricity. Sure enough, these prices are down by 53% and 34% respectively over the same period.
Quite rightly energy companies will argue that wholesale prices are just one component of customer’s energy bills, but even so, are there savings you could make to your bills?
If you do nothing and you’ve a tariff with the so called Big 6, that is British Gas, EDF, E-ON, SSE, NPower and Scottish Power, you will soon see some modest improvements. They have all recently announced gas prices reductions of around 5%. For the average British Gas customer, that’s £31 a year.
By shopping around many people are already making smart switches in providers and taking advantage of much better deals. Last month almost 50% of switches involved customers switching from the Big 6 to other smaller providers. Only 8% of switches involved customers moving the other way.
First Utility and Extra Energy were the biggest beneficiaries accounting for 17% each of the switches made. British Gas and E.ON saw the most customers leaving, with over 30% of changes involving them.
So just how much could you save? Some of the figures are surprisingly large. Those who have switched to Co-Operative Energy’s fixed deal saved on average £1,260.03! In fact the top five switch deals which accounted for nearly 30% of switches, saved an impressive £766.55 on average.
The average saving for all those switching was £504, but as in previous months the biggest beneficiaries continue to be in the 65 to 79 year old age bracket.
In December 2015 we reported that this age group had saved £531 by switching. In February 2016, that saving had risen by over 35% to £719.
Even for the under 25’s who are likely to have lower bills on average, the result of switching was still an impressive £305 per switch.
Customers in the South East and North West are most likely to switch providers and seemingly with good reason. The two regions also have the biggest average savings at £659 and £619 respectively.
With savings as significant as these so widespread it is perhaps surprising that some 45% of households have still not switched provider.
Perhaps it is because switching providers has a reputation for being a long, drawn out process. We don’t believe that this is true anymore. In most cases all you need is the name of your current energy plan, an idea of your usage, and the nerve to make a phone call.
If you’re tech-savvy, our Snapt app allows you to quickly and easily compare energy tariffs based on your usage. All you have to do is scan the QR code on your latest bill and then you’ll be able to review the cheapest quotes based on your needs. It really is that simple.
So, whoever your supplier, whatever you age and wherever you live, it really is a good time to be comparing your energy tariffs.