50,000 consumers switch suppliers after energy price rise

  oresome 16:20 14 Oct 2013

This is the figure claimed by one of the comparison sites since SSE raised prices by 8.2% last week.

On the face of it this is competition at work and will ensure an efficient market and the lowest prices for the consumer.

On the other hand, think of the administrative effort and cost involved in transfering those customers and the commission earned by the comparison sites. Consumers are being constantly churned between the various energy companies for short term gains at an enormous cost that is ultimately borne by the consumer.

I say short term because the other suppliers will follow with price rises as sure as eggs are eggs and the only long term winners will be the comparison sites through commission and the suppliers through higher prices.

I wonder how much all the churning adds to the typical bill?

  spuds 10:14 16 Oct 2013

The problem with estimated bills or direct debit payments, is that it can cause major concern if things are calculated wrong.

There have been quite a number of cases, were people have had checks done later, only to find that they have had an hefty bill to pay, because there was a mistake made. Yes some people might be lucky, and find that they may have paid to much, and are in credit. I recall one of the forum member's discussing this actual event, when he was involved in a similar incident, a year or so ago.

I personally had a large amount of problems, when converting from my previous supplier's to a dual fuel account with E.oN. All sorts of problems occured, including at one stage having two account's with different account numbers (so being charged twice). The main problem though was having estimated bills, when there was no need for this, because the electricity and gas meter's had actually been read by a meter reader a few days earlier, before the bill was sent out. Its a long story, and the final outcome was having E.oN install a 'smart meter', which both I and E.on can check together, for the dual fuel usage being provided. its made life a whole lot easier.

  BT 10:36 16 Oct 2013

I have a British Gas Dual fuel account and get a discount from them because of this. There is no problem with estimated readings as I get an email from them reminding me to submit meter readings when they are due. I can submit via my account on their website or recently having acquired a Tablet via their App which is even easier. They still send a meter reader occasionally which I believe they are obliged to do, but I still only pay for what I'm using not what they think I should be using if I were paying by Direct Debit.

  spuds 11:51 16 Oct 2013

The supplier's by law are obliged to take meter readings and check/replace meters in a given period, but sometimes this is overlooked, unless a complaint is made.

There is quite a bit of information on the CAB website.

One thing that still baffles me, is how incidents like this happens. Recently there was headline news in my local newspaper, about a female returning to her flat, and found the property had been entered without her permission. It transpired that a energy supply company had obtained a warrant for entry, so as to disconnect her gas supply due to non-payment. The problem was, that her flat and all the others in the block were electric only with no gas supplies. Apparently she had previously advised the supplier, but it made no difference, the supposed supplier had obtained a warrant, and carried out its business of forced entry?.

  oresome 13:18 16 Oct 2013

Ok simple question who is the cheapest supplier?

Well that's far from simple!

It will depend where you live for one thing and your consumption pattern.

The Government are making the suppliers simplify their pricing structures but until recently complexity has been the order of the day. It's the same product that comes down the wire or pipe so there is little else to go on other than the price and their customer service and you don't know what the customer service will be like until or if you have a problem.

  bumpkin 17:16 16 Oct 2013

“Someone sells a loaf for a £1 and someone else sells it for 75p it is easy to work out what is the cheapest. But it does not work that way with the power companys.”

Look at it like this Jock1e, really quite straightforward.

The cost of the £1 loaf goes down to 68.476p after the first 19.4 loaves in the charging period which varies between areas and different bakers.

The cost of the 75p loaf can fluctuate which means increase in real terms unless you have a fixed price agreement in which case it will be more expensive in the first place depending upon where you live, the length of the term and the baker chosen.

Also available are dual body fuel deals where if you get your cakes from the same baker as your bread you may get 3.67% discount on the bread in band 1 and 4.43% off any cakes in band 2 during the qualifying period providing that you pay by the approved method.

I trust that simple analogy clarifies things for you.

  namtas 23:37 16 Oct 2013

To find the cheapest in your supply area you need to know the annual amount of gas or electric you are using in KWh and your tariff, (or use the annual cost) and compare with the lowest supplier tariffs in your locality. Or obtain an estimate from the possible new supplier based on your usage. When I last checked, the comparison web sites were not accurate for best prices and my understanding is that this is because they do not include all of the supplier

  bumpkin 10:09 17 Oct 2013

It is deliberately made complicated, you need to use your loaf when changing.

  Aitchbee 13:00 17 Oct 2013

Scottish Gas have 'bumped up' their prices too!

click here

  bumpkin 17:10 17 Oct 2013

Spider9, there is no need to complicate the issue.

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