British households are leaving the ‘Big Six’ energy providers in droves, according to the latest figures from Energy UK.
During the month of July, the trade body found that close to half (47%) of all switchers left a big supplier in favour of a smaller alternative.
Despite few of us needing to touch our thermostats during the heatwave, almost half a million households switched energy supplier in July, representing a 23% increase compared to the same month in 2017.
The increase brings the total number of energy switches so far this year to 3.2 million and suggests that more Brits are likely to change supplier than ever before, beating last year’s record of 5.5 million switches.
Recent months have seen the Big Six punishing customers with a series of price hikes.
Only last week British Gas announced its second price rise so far this year. The move will see the typical standard tariff bill rise to £1,205 a year.
Meanwhile, British Gas’s parent company, Centrica, confirmed it had lost 111,000 accounts during the first quarter of 2018.
E.on, SSE, Npower, EDF, Scottish Power as well as Bulb have also introduced price rises this year, blaming their hikes on higher wholesale energy costs.
The Big Six tend to rank among the most expensive providers, with smaller providers offering cheaper bills and access to cleaner, more environmentally friendly energy too.
Commenting on the figures, Steven Day, co-founder of Pure Planet, says: "These figures show just how much ground the biggest are losing to smaller, more efficient suppliers.
"The Big Six business model is broken, their operating costs are too high and consumers are being asked to pay inflated prices for that reason. We now have a market where smaller, cleaner independent suppliers can beat the Big Six hands down on price and customer service.”