A simples guide

The energy switch guarantee

It’s tempting to stick with what you know – after all, change can be scary. But doubts and fear of the unknown could be costing you money on your energy bills. So what if someone could guarantee that switching energy provider would be simple, quick and painless? Well – this is your lucky year, because 2016 is the year that the government’s ‘energy switch guarantee’ came into force – want to find out more? Then read on, as we’ve put together this guide to the Energy Switch Guarantee.


What is the energy switch guarantee?

It’s a promise that any mistakes that might happen as a result of switching will be appropriately rectified and compensated for. For example, any charges that a customer faces because of a switching error will be resolved and paid for by the supplier at fault.

The scheme was developed by Energy UK (the trade association for the UK energy industry representing over 80 suppliers and generators of electricity and gas for domestic and business consumers). It’s been implemented on their behalf so that we can all have peace of mind when switching supplier and save some money on our energy bills. Look out for the new logo as you can be confident that if an energy supplier features it, then they’re bound by the guarantee.

So what guarantees do I actually get?

The Energy Switch Guarantee promises hassle free switching – there won’t be any disruption to your service as all energy providers use the same pipes and wires so you needn’t fear the lights won’t work. Switching’s also free (unless you have any cancellation fees for leaving your existing contract early) and should take no more than 21 days to organise and implement. Your new supplier will be the one that tells your old supplier that you’re leaving so you don’t have to.

Under the guarantee, signing up is also easy – you’ll be sent details of your new agreement and if you get cold feet you have 14 days to change your mind. Any final billing is the responsibility of your old supplier – they should send you a final bill no more than six weeks after the switch has been made. They’ll also have to refund you any money within 14 days of the final bill being sent.

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What’s the point of it?

This government-backed guarantee will offer clarity and continuity for customers and could in turn increase switching levels and encourage competition in the market. Millions of households may be put off switching because of concerns around the transition, so hopefully the Energy Switch Guarantee will help give customers the confidence to consider switching and possibly saving money.

It’s worth noting that the Energy Switch Guarantee is still being rolled out, not all suppliers agreed to the terms. Currently, all of the big six have promised to adhere to the Guarantee (British Gas, EON, EDF Energy, npower, Scottish Power and SSE). But it’s not just the largest companies that have made the promise – some of the newer, smaller providers have done so too such as Octopus Energy and SO Energy.

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 but the Department of Energy and Climate Change estimated that 14 million households could save more than £200 each year. 

For a better view of what you could save, why not look at our monthly Energy snapshotYou can see how much people have been saving and see the deals that are coming to an end so you can make the most of them before it’s too late.

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

Well, that’s where we come in, we love a good comparison – simply use our energy comparison service and tell us where you live, how much energy you use (you can find this on your last bill), who your current supplier(s) are is and what tariff you’re on. You’ll be able to search results and find the right deal for your needs.

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