This is your last chance to join the thousands switching to a special tariff in our latest Big Energy Switch. Forget the up to £100 annual saving in the Tories' proposed price cap (which could take ages to come in), our deal saves a typical £280/yr all-in on big six standard tariffs.
Yet it ends tomorrow (Thu) at 10pm and we've only 32,000 left. So ACT QUICK if you want to grab it. For those who have, savings can be huge. Jane tweeted: ("Used the Cheap Energy Club link @MoneySavingExp and I'm now saving £69 per month (£828/yr) thanks to you." And Zella wrote: ("£412/yr saving. Thank you."
Are you eligible for Big Switch 7? A collective switch is where firms bid to provide energy through a trusted provider (such as us or a council). Regulator Ofgem's rules mean you need to be pre-registered, but if you get this email YOU COUNT, provided you were signed up by 23 April. You must use the same email though. Members of our Cheap Energy Club up to the same date also count.
So speed straight over and do a quick Cheap Energy Club comparison. Even if not pre-registered for the collective you can still compare and save big, but you won't see our winner, below.
Our winner. Green Star Energy 1-year fix. The Green Star Energy Rate Saver 12month Fixed MSE tariff is available across Britain (but sadly not NI) and the rate's locked in for a year - though of course what you pay varies with usage.
It's available for dual fuel AND gas-only AND elec-only AND Eco 7. You can pay by monthly (cheapest way) or quarterly direct debit, or quarterly cash or cheque, but NOT prepay.
More on Green Star... It's a decent-sized provider which has been around since 2013, has nearly 200,000 customers and is owned by a large Canadian company. Plus, it's taken part in our Big Switches before and has been well received in previous collectives.
How it compares for someone with typical usage
Avg price on Ofgem typical dual-fuel direct-debit use (varies by region)
Typical cost: Current avg Big 6 standard tariff: £1,138/yr
MSE Big Switch: Green Star fix: £884/yr + £30 MSE cashback: £854/yr
Next-cheapest fix: Green Network Energy: £878/yr, no cashback
Get YOUR EXACT PRICE & saving via a full market comparison
PS: New provider One Select has launched a fix it says beats these on price. It hasn't yet provided data for our comparison, so we can't compare it. We've no details of its customer service, capacity to cope if lots apply or financial strength, so it's your call.
Get YOUR EXACT PRICE & saving via a full market comparison
PS: New provider One Select has launched a fix it says beats these on price. It hasn't yet provided data for our comparison, so we can't compare it. We've no details of its customer service, capacity to cope if lots apply or financial strength, so it's your call. - We give you £30 dual-fuel (£15 single-fuel) cashback: For tariffs where we get paid if you switch (we show all regardless of whether we do or not), we share roughly half in cashback, so it's win-win. To help we've now a filter to order savings including cashback, and the links above default to that.
- Boosted customer service: Green Star got 56% 'great' feedback in our last customer service poll, though that's based on just a few votes. We've also negotiated bolstered support, so it has a special help team just for this. And while Green Star is responsible for the tariff, we take our bit seriously, so if something goes wrong, and it won't help, let us know and we'll try to help.
- Early exit penalties: There are £30 per fuel exit penalties, though if you move home, it says it'll waive them. Existing Green Star customers also won't pay exit fees if they switch to this.
- NO credit check and NO upfront payment needed: Unlike others.
- You CAN'T get the Warm Home Discount: If you get it, this likely isn't for you. Instead do a quick comparison and use our 'Warm Home Discount' filter.
- It's not a renewable tariff: Green Star sometimes offers them (which tend to be costlier), and tries to get as much of its energy as it can from renewable sources, but our deal isn't certain to be.
Want to ask Martin a question on this?
He'll be doing a Facebook Live at 2.30pm today (Wed), post your questions about switching, the collective, saving, the energy price cap & more.
No bidders for green, prepaid & long fixes, but you CAN save. As always, we tried to get a deal for each of these, but no supplier would bid, never mind offer a market-leading tariff. Yet there are still some good deals on the open market. So here's what to do...
- Cheapest Green Tariff: Just do a quick comparison and click the '100% renewable' box in the filter on our results page.
- Cheapest Prepaid Tariff: Just do a quick prepaid comparison - make sure you select prepayment options when filling in the form.
- Cheapest 'Long Fixes': To lock in for longer to save you from having to switch as often, and protect against future hikes, you usually pay a slightly higher rate (though many still save). So we pull out the best long fix in our top picks comparison.
The MSE Big Switch Event 7 FAQs
For more detailed answers, see the full MSE collective FAQs
Q. I switched a year ago, why is this more expensive? Unfortunately the cost of the cheapest deals has risen by 21% since last May, as wholesale costs have risen. And we can't beat the market. But this is one of the cheapest available now - it'll still save an average £280/yr versus big six standard rates.
Q. What practically happens when I switch? Very little. No one visits your home. You don't lose supply. Just give your new supplier a meter reading and then after a few weeks in the background you're switched. It's the same gas, same electricity, same safety - only price & service charge.
Q. What info do I need to switch? It's best to have a bill, and input kilowatt hours (kWh) into Cheap Energy Club, rather than cost. Yet DON'T WORRY if you don't know your usage, Cheap Energy Club helps guesstimate. While the answer won't be perfect, it's usually far better than doing nowt.
Q. Why must I compare cost? Can't I just click a link and get the deal? Exact costs vary by region & usage, so it's important you see how it compares to the rest of the market - on principle we do a full comparison with our collectives.
Q. I'm on a fix now - should I switch to this? Do a comparison and see if you'll save, factoring in any exit fees and the length the fix is protecting you from price hikes. Remember, if you've 49 days or fewer until your fix ends your supplier CAN'T charge exit fees anyway.
Q. How does Cheap Energy Club work? It does 3 things:
1) We show your exact price & saving, & compare to ALL market tariffs.
2) You get £30 dual-fuel cashback (£15 single-fuel) any time we switch you. It's sent roughly 60-90 days later.
3) We check for better deals. You set a 'trigger saving', eg, £150/yr, then we alert you if you can save this by switching again.
Q. I've heard about an energy price cap - should I wait for that? The Conservatives' plan to cap energy prices (should they win the election) is aimed at helping those who have never switched. They claim it'll save people on "poor value tariffs" up to £100/yr. But switching will likely save much more, with our collective saving a typical £280/yr.
The big energy companies also say a cap could force the price of the cheapest deals up, meaning switch incentives may not be as strong. So however you look at it, it makes sense to switch now.
Q. Can I switch if with an independent gas transporter? Yes, see IGT help.
Q. I'm in credit - will I get it back if I switch? Yes. See Reclaim credit.
Q. I'm in debt - can I switch? Yes, usually - see Switching in debt help.
Q. Can I switch if I'm renting? Yes. See our Renters' switching info.
Q. Can I see the standing charge and kWh costs? They vary by region, so we display YOUR exact cost in the Cheap Energy Club comparison result.
Q. Can I switch if I've solar panels & a feed-in tariff? Yes. Solar & FIT info
Q. I'm on a smart meter. Can I switch? Yes, but you may lose functionality. Smart meters & switching info
Q. Can I get paper bills on the Green Star deal? Yes but for £15/yr if you've dual fuel. See paper bills.
Q. Is paying by direct debit cheapest? Yes, but do regular meter readings.
Q. Can suppliers put my price up on a cheap fix? The rate's fixed, yet use more (or if it's estimated you will) & the direct debit can rise. See Fight Unfair Direct Debits.
Q. Can I pick a date for when my switch will happen? We get asked this over and over - sadly, providers don't let you do this. See Switching FAQs.
Q. Can I get this in Northern Ireland? Sadly no, but see Cheap Northern Ireland Energy for help.
This article first appeared in the weekly email on 10 May 2017.