You could save up to £377 on gas and electricity a year by switching to a cheaper tariff, Which? research reveals. Plus how to find the best energy tariff for your usage.
Smaller energy firms are behind all of the five cheapest deals this month. Although they aren’t quite as cheap as those we saw at the beginning of the summer, all of them bring potential savings of £290 or more per year if you’re currently with a Big Six supplier on its standard tariff.
While it’s hot, your gas bill will be reduced as you’re unlikely to be heating your home. But do you own an air conditioner? Or have fans strategically placed to cool your home? If so, your electricity usage may be up.
We tell you what the best energy deals are, whether you’re a high, medium or low-energy user. Keep reading to find out more.
Read on to see the cheapest deals depending on how much energy you use. Or compare gas and electricity prices now using Which? Switch to find the best deal for you.
Or you can call us on 0800 410 1149 or 01259 220235.
Cheapest gas and electricity in August
Here, we reveal the five cheapest dual-fuel energy tariffs for medium users. This should give an idea of what you should spend each year, although the exact cost will depend on how much gas and electricity you use.
The prices are annual. Below, we’ve listed the tariff, how much it will save a medium user compared with British Gas and Npower’s standard variable tariffs (respectively the cheapest and most expensive of the Big Six firms).
British Gas’ standard variable tariff is not available to new customers. Around 3.4 million customers are on this tariff, according to a British Gas announcement earlier this week.
How much energy do you use?
The amount of energy you use can affect which tariff is cheapest for you. Gas and electricity tariffs are usually made up of:
- Standing charge: daily charge paid regardless of how much energy you use
- Unit rate: the amount you pay for each ‘unit’ of energy used.
So if you use a lot of energy, it might make sense to pick a tariff with a lower unit rate. While low users may benefit from a deal with a cheaper standing charge.
The graph below shows the prices of the cheapest and priciest deals for three different energy users. Scroll down to see how much money each could save. Can’t see the graph and you’re on a mobile? Click here.
Read our guide on getting the best energy deal for you.
Cheapest energy deals if you use a lot of energy
You might be a high-energy user if you have a big home to heat, your home is poorly-insulated or you have a large family who use lots of appliances, for example.
For a high user, based on energy regulator Ofgem’s figures, the current cheapest tariffs are:
Cheapest energy deals for low users
Low users are likely to be couples or those living alone or in smaller properties (such as flats), which are more energy-efficient.
For low users, based on energy regulator Ofgem’s figures, the current cheapest tariffs are:
Energy companies in the news: are you affected?
Scorching sunshine, or sustained downpours (depending on where you live) may mean your thoughts are far away from your gas and electricity bill. But the past month has been a busy one for energy companies.
Which? Recommended Provider Octopus Energy is set to gain more than a 100,000 new customers when it becomes the new supply partner for M&S Energy and takes on Iresa’s customers after the supplier went bust.
M&S Energy’s nine-year partnership with SSE will end on 28 September, after which Octopus Energy will supply M&S Energy customers, bringing to them its digital-first approach to bills and customer service.
Octopus Energy will also take on Iresa’s 90,000 customers later this month, after Ofgem appointed it the ‘supplier of last resort’ when Iresa stopped trading. The small firm was in financial difficulty and also banned from taking on new customers indefinitely until it resolved customer service and billing issues.
But Iresa isn’t the only energy firm to face major change this year:
- Tiny brand Gen4u seems to be in financial trouble; it defaulted on payments at the end of last month.
- Npower and SSE’s merger is ongoing after SSE shareholders voted in favour in July.
- Flow Energy was bought by Co-op Energy in May, although it will continue to operate as a separate brand for its 130,000 customers.
- Future Energy stopped trading in January. Customers were moved to Green Star Energy.
Which? energy pricing research
Prices are based on a dual-fuel tariff available in all regions in England, Scotland and Wales paying by monthly direct debit, with paperless bills. Energy usage is based on Ofgem’s annual average usage figures for low (8,000kWh gas and 1,900kWh electricity), medium (12,000kWh gas and 3,100kWh electricity), and high (17,000kWh gas and 4,600kWh electricity) users.
Data is from Energylinx. Prices given are averages across regions, are rounded to the nearest whole pound and correct on 1 August 2018.