Big Energy Saving Week: Households lose £1,500 failing to switch in last six years

Published by Helen Knapman on 22 January 2018.
Last updated on 22 January 2018

Big Energy Saving Week: Households lose £1,500 failing to switch in last six years

Households have lost out on £1,500 by failing to switch over the past six years, according to new figures published by Big Energy Saving Week.

Big Energy Saving Week, which begins today (22 January 2017), is a nationwide campaign from charity Citizens Advice, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), and the Energy Saving Trust that aims to help households lower their annual spend on energy.

According to BEIS, a third of people (33%) believe there’s no point in switching because “all suppliers are the same”, yet prices and customer service can vary hugely.

The campaign highlights that nine million households – more than a third (35%) of all UK households – failed to change gas or electricity provider between 2012 and 2017 – despite potential savings of up to £300 a year.

For example, on 26 October 2017 the average standard variable tariff across the Big Six providers was £1,135 a year. This compares to the cheapest deal on the market on the same day of £827 – an annual saving of £308.  

Gillian Guy, chief executive of Citizens Advice, says: “We know people who stay with the same energy supplier often pay hundreds of pounds more a year for the same gas and electricity. 

“But checking your energy tariff and switching to a cheaper deal is one of the quickest and easiest ways to cut your bills.”

Business and energy secretary Greg Clark adds that households may be able to reduce bills by installing a smart meter, as these track how much energy you’re using, meaning it should be easier to reduce energy waste. According to Smart Energy GB – the organisation explaining the smart meter rollout – eight in 10 (80%) people with smart meters have taken steps to reduce energy waste.

Visit Moneywise’s Energy and Water section for more of the latest news and advice. 

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