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20 million customers pay too much for energy

Which? calls for fair energy prices for everyone

Energy prices

Are you on a standard variable tariff? You could be paying up to £260 too much.

You could be paying up to £260 a year too much for your energy, new figures from Ofgem revealed today. 

The figures show that two out of three households in the UK are on standard variable tariffs (SVTs), often the most expensive deal. 

Three quarters of British Gas customers, and 91% of SSE customers, could save money on a cheaper tariff, according to Ofgem. 

The largest savings are for Extra Energy customers, who could save up to £260 by changing to a cheaper tariff, and Co-operative Energy customers who might save up to £252.

Our independent switching service, Which? Switch, makes it easy to compare prices and find the best deal for you. If you’d prefer to call, you can phone Which? Switch on 0800 410 1149 or 01259 220235.

Save by switching from standard tariffs

While some consumers on SVTs will have chosen that deal themselves, others will have been put onto one by their energy supplier once the deal they signed up to has come to an end. 

If you chose a fixed-rate plan, when this expires you will be shifted onto an SVT. 

SVTs can go up at any time, so as soon as your energy deal expires, it’s time to find a new one. 

Fair energy prices

Which? is campaigning for fair energy prices for everyone. Over the past few years, energy prices have risen far faster than inflation, yet energy companies have failed to improve, with terrible customer service. As a result, consumers’ trust in energy companies has fallen sharply. 

Alex Neill, Which? managing director of home & legal services, said: ‘Publishing more information about the amount that people could save from switching is unlikely to make much difference to the millions of people paying over the odds on expensive standard tariffs. Instead, we need to see much more action by energy suppliers this winter to genuinely engage with their customers on poor-value deals.’

Sign our petition to demand energy companies help those struggling to pay their energy bills this winter. 

Cheapest energy deals

In our latest research on energy suppliers, we found that to save the most you will need to pick a small supplier. However, finding the right one can be tricky. 

Both the cheapest and most expensive UK-wide deals were from small suppliers. On average, So Energy charges £858 for gas and electricity right now, while Glide Energy costs around £1,404 per year. 

When we completed our research in early December 2016, we found more than 150 gas and electricity deals to choose from. Some are UK-wide, while others are specific to local areas. 

It’s also worth thinking about how much you will pay to leave the deal. Many companies charge an exit fee and this can be up to £60. 

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