A simples guide

The switching process explained

If you were one of the 6.1 million energy accounts that switched energy supplier in 2015 then it won’t come as any news to you that switching could save you hundreds each year. But if switching’s still on your ever growing ‘to do’ list and it all just seems like too much effort then read on, it’s not as complicated as it seems – honest.

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How do I switch?

Switching really is straightforward, no complicated forms, no awkward ‘I’m leaving you’ conversations – it’s all rather civilised. Nine out of ten people who’ve switched found the process straightforward. So if you’re tempted to make the change and see if you can save some money, why not start right here and now. Use our energy comparison service to start comparing, find the right deal and switch today.

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What happens when I’ve chosen my new energy supplier?

If you haven’t done your homework yet and chosen a new energy supplier – tut, tut, it’s time to get cracking because you could be missing out. All you need is your postcode (as energy costs are based on where you live) and a few details from your bill such as how many kilowatt hours you use or how much you generally spend, and away you go.

If you’ve already chosen a new supplier, what happens next? Well, in most instances your new supplier will do all the hard work – they’ll liaise with your existing supplier and agree a date that the big switch will happen. All you’ll need to do is make sure you take a meter reading on the date that the swap has been set for – so far, so simples right?

Pay off any outstanding bills with your existing supplier and once you’ve done that you can cancel any Direct Debits you have with them. If you’re in credit, then make sure you get a refund.

Can I switch if I owe my existing supplier money?

You can but that doesn’t mean you can also kiss your debt goodbye – you’ll still need to pay what you owe. If you’ve been in debt for 28 days or less, then your current supplier will just add what you owe to your final bill. But if you’re past those 28 days then you’ll need to pay them the remaining balance direct before you can switch. .

If you’ve got a prepayment meter and you’re less than £500 in debt with your supplier you should still be able to switch. If this is the case, then your debt will be transferred to your new supplier.

Your existing supplier can try and stop you from switching if you still owe them money but they’ll need to clearly state why they’re doing this and what you’ll need to do in order to resolve it.

How long does the switch take?

In the majority of cases, it takes 17 days, occasionally it could take four to six weeks. Your new supplier will tell you what date your switch will happen. But don’t worry if you suddenly get cold feet, you have a 14 day cooling off period if you change your mind.

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How does switching energy work?

You shouldn’t notice anything happening during the switching process. The actual energy you receive will be the same it’s just that you’ll be charged a different rate for it. So no new pipes are laid and there’s no big changeover, it should all be seamless (so feel free to give yourself a round of applause).

So I won’t be cut off if I switch?

No, you won’t be. You’ll still have your gas and electricity as usual during the entire switching process, so you don’t have to worry about buying in extra candles and heating hot water for your bath on a camping stove.

How much could I save?

What you could save depends on where you live and how much energy you use. If you live in the North then you could save yourself an average of £521. The South East leads for the percentage of switches (14.59%) giving an average saving of £472. So go on, give yourself an energy boost and use our energy comparison service today to see how much you could save.