As Npower’s price rise demonstrated last week, staying loyal to your energy supplier on its standard variable tariff doesn’t pay off. Especially when you can save £353 over the next year on your gas and electricity bill by switching from one of the priciest standard deals with a big supplier to one of the cheapest tariffs.
This month’s cheapest UK-wide dual fuel deal is from small supplier Iresa. With 199 different energy tariffs to choose from this month, Iresa’s Flex4 12month direct debit deal currently costs £834 on average per year. It’s £353 cheaper than the current priciest big six supplier standard deal, from Npower.
If you’re an Npower customer on its dual fuel standard tariff, the 9.8% (or £109) average increase on your annual bill comes into effect from 16 March. New customers on the tariff will pay the higher prices straightaway. EDF Energy’s standard tariff customers will see an 8.4% rise in their electricity prices too, on the same day.
British Gas, Eon and SSE have frozen their prices until April but, as we reveal below, you can still make savings on your energy bill. Plus there’s no guarantee their standard tariff prices won’t go up afterwards.
We’ve calculated how much pricier the big six energy companies’ standard deals are, compared with the cheapest on the market. Use our research to find out how much you could save.
Find the cheapest energy deal for your home with Use our independent switching site, Which? Switch, to find the cheapest energy deal for your home. If you’d prefer to call, you can phone Which? Switch on 0800 410 1149 or 01259 220235.
Save £353 on your energy bill
Four of the top five cheapest UK-wide deals this month don’t charge exit fees. This means that you’re free to leave, penalty-free, any time you spot a better deal. If you’re on a standard variable tariff, you’re always able to leave fee-free. But this often isn’t the case for fixed deals, such as Economy Energy’s tariff in the table below.
But fixed tariffs give you the security that the price you pay for your energy will not change during the term of the deal. We reveal the top five cheapest UK-wide energy deals in the table below, plus how much you’d save compared with the cheapest standard tariff from a big six supplier (British Gas) and the priciest (Npower, following its price rise).
Top five cheapest energy deals for February 2017
|Supplier||Tariff||Annual price||Tariff type||Exit fee||Saving from priciest big six standard tariff (Npower)||Saving from cheapest big six standard tariff (British Gas)|
|Iresa||Flex4 12 month Fixed Direct Debit – Paperless||£834||Fixed||n/a||£353||£210|
|Tonik Energy||Positive Energy v2 – Paperless||£880||Fixed||n/a||£307||£164|
|Toto Energy||Go with the flow – Smart direct Debit – Paperless
Go with the flow – Direct Debit – Paperless
|£880 (with a smart meter)
£885 (without smart meter)
|Variable||n/a||£307 (with a smart meter)
£302 (without smart meter)
|£164 (with a smart meter)
£159 (without a smart meter)
|Avro Energy||Simple and Switch – Paperless||£887||Fixed||n/a||£299||£157|
|Economy Energy||Direct Saver 2017 (v2) – Paperless||£889||Fixed||£50 (£25 per fuel)||£298||£155|
How these prices are calculated: Prices are based on a dual-fuel tariff for an average user (using 3,100kWh of electricity and 12,500kWh of gas per year), paying by direct debit and are averaged across all regions. Exact prices can vary according to region, usage and payment method. The prices given in the table above are correct as of 5 February 2017.
Toto Energy’s deals are slightly different prices, depending on whether or not you have a smart meter. All of these deals are paperless – you must view your bills online. Some are also available with paper billing, but this is usually more expensive.
The priciest energy deals
The big six energy suppliers are currently under the spotlight for the prices of their standard tariffs, and the number of customers on them. So you’d be forgiven for thinking these are the priciest deals on the market. But although these deals are costly, they aren’t the most expensive on the market. Apart from Npower, the five priciest standard energy deals are from smaller suppliers.
The priciest costs £570 more per year than the cheapest tariff on the market this month.
- Glide Electricity and Gas – Paperless – £1,404
- Ebico EquiGas & Equipower – £1,191
- Npower Standard – Paper and Paperless – £1,187
- Ecotricity Green Electricity – £1,149
- Extra Energy Variable Price v1 – Paperless – £1,130
Our recent energy satisfaction survey revealed that the companies loved best by their customers aren’t necessarily the cheapest. So you can use our survey results to balance price and customer satisfaction to find the best energy supplier for you.
Compare and switch suppliers
(All pricing data is supplied by Energylinx, and based on a dual-fuel medium user [3,100kWh electricity and 12,500kWh gas per year], paying by monthly direct debit and choosing paperless billing. Prices are averaged across UK regions and correct on 5 February 2017.)