Press release:

Cut price energy deals drive switching savings to five year high

  • The annual saving made by consumers switching energy tariffs has soared by almost a third to £292 a year – more than at any point since 2010, according to new data from uSwitch.com[1]
  • The new figures come ahead of provisional findings from the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) on ways to boost competition in the market
  • All of the current top ten energy deals are priced at under £950 a year – compared to only two deals at the end of 2014[2]
  • 10% of customers who switched saved more than £512 in the first half of 2015 – up from £412 in the second half of last year[1]
  • uSwitch.com is calling on the CMA to propose remedies to boost consumer engagement, to further increase competition and lower energy bills.

The average annual saving made by consumers switching energy tariffs has soared by almost a third to £292 a year – more than at any point since 2010, according to new data from uSwitch.com, the independent price comparison and switching service[1].

The figures come ahead of provisional findings from the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) on ways to make the UK energy market work for consumers by increasing competition between suppliers. The rise in the average saving has been driven in part by a string of highly competitive deals over the winter from new, smaller providers, who have stolen eight per cent of market share from the big six energy suppliers since January 2013[4].

All of the top ten deals are currently priced at under £950 a year – compared to just two tariffs at the end of 2014[2]. The current cheapest dual fuel plan, at £870 a year, is a staggering £68 less than the best-priced tariff at the end of last December[2] and at a price level not seen in the market since November 2010[3].

According to the latest data, at least ten per cent of dual fuel customers who switched saved more than £512 between December 2014 and May 2015 – up from £412 in the second half of last year[1]. Consumers switching from standard variable to fixed tariffs saw the greatest savings, slashing an average of £334 from their annual bills.

With the CMA due to report provisional findings from its energy investigation before the end of the month, the figures suggest that while competition is working in a small part of the market, the majority of consumers still remain on expensive standard tariffs. uSwitch.com has called for remedies from the CMA to encourage more consumers to engage with the market, as the most effective way to further increase competition, lower prices and improve customer service.

Ann Robinson, Director of Consumer Policy at uSwitch.com, says: “New, smaller energy providers have helped drive the money people save by switching to a five year high. Unfortunately, only a minority of consumers are taking advantage of these deals, so vast numbers of consumers are still unnecessarily paying over the odds for their energy.

“The fact that big savings are there for the taking shows the huge potential for making this market work for more consumers. All eyes will be on the CMA later this month for its recommendations on how to boost low customer engagement with the market. We believe this is key to increasing competition, lowering bills and improving customer service.”

— ends —

Notes to editors

  1. Average saving figures for uSwitch dual fuel customers May 2009 to May 2015 
Six months to Average dual fuel customer saving At least 10% of customers who switched saved
May 2009 £192 £406
Nov 2009 £254 £462
May 2010 £304 £544
Nov 2010 £247 £470
May 2011 £170 £413
Nov 2011 £152 £371
May 2012 £138 £328
Nov 2012 £156 £315
May 2013 £139 £276
Nov 2013 £175 £350
May 2014 £204 £383
Nov 2014 £228 £412
May 2015 £292 £512

Source: uSwitch.com based on dual fuel customers switching with uSwitch between May 2009 and May 2015 

  1. Current best buy plans paying by monthly direct debit
Supplier Plan name Average bill size Tariff type
GB Energy Supply Premium Energy Saver £869 Variable
First Utility iSave Fixed July 2016 £913 Fixed
Flow Connect £914 Fixed
GnERGY GnERGY Fixed June 2016 v1 £915 Fixed
Extra Energy Fresh Fixed Price Sept 2016 v2 £925 Fixed
Green Star Energy Rate Saver 12 Month Fixed 1506 £926 Fixed
OVO Energy Better Energy (all Online) £933 Fixed
ScottishPower Online Fixed Price Energy June 2016 £941 Fixed
Co-op Fair & Square May 2016 £944 Fixed
Sainsbury’s Energy Fixed Price June 2016 £946 Fixed

Source: uSwitch.com. Table correct as at 18th June, 2015. Prices quoted in the table above are based on a dual fuel customer consuming medium energy usage as defined by Ofgem (3,200 kWh of electricity and 13,500 kWh of gas per year) with prices averaged across all regions. The only two dual fuel deals for under £950 at the end of 2014 were Co-op Energy (Fair & Square March 2016) at £938 and Extra Energy (Merry Christmas Fixed Price Jan 2016 v1) at £950. 

  1. EDF Energy launched a tariff in November 2010 which cost £867. This excludes any potential collective switch schemes
  2. Source: Ofgem https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/publications-and-updates/infographic-bills-prices-and-profits

About us

Launched in September 2000, uSwitch is an online and telephone price comparison and switching service, helping consumers get a better deal on gas, electricity, broadband, TV services, mobiles and personal finance products including mortgages, credit cards, car and home insurance. Last year we saved UK consumers over £278 million on their energy bills alone.

Customers can sign up to an account that automatically monitors the energy market and notifies them when they can move to a cheaper tariff, while broadband customers can conduct a speed test to find out how fast their broadband is and identify the best deal for their postcode.

The multi award-winning 'Switching Made Simple' app allows customers to compare energy, broadband, credit card, mobile and SIM-only deals – and uSwitch also has a UK contact centre manned by energy and broadband experts. Customers can post their latest energy bills to FREEPOST USWITCH to receive a free call back and be guided through the comparison process, or they can email customerservices@uswitch.com with their postcode and usage details.

uSwitch is owned by ZPG, which operates some of the UK’s most trusted digital brands that help empower smarter property and household decisions including Zoopla, Money, PrimeLocation and SmartNewHomes.

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