EDF Energy pledges cheaper prices for vulnerable customers
EDF Energy is sending out rebates out to more than 100,000 elderly customers.
The supplier will also automatically transfer its most vulnerable customers to the cheapest alternative.
Eligible customers are those who qualify for the Warm Home Discount – a government scheme to help those most likely to struggle with their energy bills, offering a one-off discount of £130 on electricity bills.
The Warm Home Discount is eligible UK residents:
- 80 or over and getting the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit, or
- under 80 and only getting the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit, but not if you also receive the Saving Credit.
EDF Energy’s announcement will mean that vulnerable customers stand to save around £140 on their 2013 energy bills as well as receiving a rebate worth around £47.
Those customers who pay via cash, cheque or prepayment meter will also receive the same 6% discount on their bills this year as customers paying by monthly direct debit.
EDF Energy also announced that it would provide its customers with an annual statement, informing them of the cheapest tariffs on offer and any savings that could be made.
The move reflects comments by Ofgem that energy suppliers should do more to make switching to a cheaper tariff easier for customers.
The right thing to do
Martin Lawrence, managing director of energy sourcing and customer supply, said: “We are proud to be the first and only energy supplier to ensure its most vulnerable customers benefit from its cheapest prices.
“Over the coming weeks over 100,000 pensioners on low incomes will receive rebates and will also benefit from lower energy prices next year than they would have otherwise paid.
“We believe this is the right thing to do and follows through on the commitments we made earlier this year to our customers on providing fair prices.”
The supplier also pledged to move its customers onto the most competitive tariff available when its popular Blue +Price Promise September 2013 comes to an end. Suppliers have previously been criticised for automatically rolling customers on to a standard plan – often the most expensive option available.
A welcome move
Ann Robinson, Director of Consumer Policy at uSwitch, said: “This is a welcome move. The cost of energy is the number one concern for consumers and the eye-watering £830 or 159% increase in the cost of the average household energy bill since 2004 will be hitting the vulnerable hardest of all.
“This winter 84% of households are expected to be rationing their energy use, while last winter over three quarters (75%) went without heating at some point to keep a lid on their bills. EDF Energy’s pledge will help those of its customers in the greatest need and could be enough to ensure that they don’t have to go without adequate heating during our coldest months.”
All about EDF Energy
What is the Warm Home Discount?