More than 660,000 customers switched electricity supplier in February – the highest number ever recorded in a single month.
The latest figures from trade association Energy UK show that electricity switches last month were 60% up on February 2017. And the number is the biggest since Energy UK started recording the number of monthly switches in 2012.
It means that close to 24,000 customers a day switched electricity provider last month, and over a million customers have switched so far this year alone.
Earlier this month it was revealed that energy switching hit a nine-year high in 2017, with five million switching electricity supplier and four million switching gas.
Check if you can save £100s/year by switching energy provider – use our Cheap Energy Club to help you compare the best deals on the market.
60% of households could save £300+/yr by switching
There are serious savings to be made by switching, though some remain unsure of the process.
In a poll last year we asked MoneySavers "What puts you off/frustrates you about switching energy?" Here are some concerns raised, and what you need to know about switching electricity or gas supplier:
- "I'm not sure it really saves money in the long run." Last year, energy regulator Ofgem found 60% of households could save £300 each year by switching energy supplier. If you want to find out how much YOU can save, use our Cheap Energy Club.
- "Comparing is easy, but I'm worried switching provider will be a nightmare." Switching is usually easy – only customer service, billing and prices change. The new supplier performs the switch, and all you need to do is take a meter reading. It can take as little as 17 days to switch – including a 14-day cooling-off period where you're free to change your mind without penalty. But it can take four to six weeks.
- "I'm worried I'll be cut off in error." You won't be. When you switch it's the same gas, electricity and safety, the only thing that changes is which firm provides your bill and looks after your account.
- "I'm worried I'll lose smart meter functions." Unfortunately, most smart meters aren't compatible with different suppliers at the moment. If you switch, your smart meter will likely lose some of its 'smart' functionality, such as the ability to send automatic readings to your supplier. However, all this means is that you'd have to go back to manually providing meter readings to your new supplier – don't let it put you off switching and saving. See our Smart Meters guide for more info.
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What does Energy UK say?
Lawrence Slade, chief executive of Energy UK, said: "The energy market has never been so competitive and it's great to see record numbers of consumers engaging in the market to get a better deal.
"Customers can make big savings by joining the millions who've found a better deal – through either checking with your existing supplier or choosing from over 60 suppliers on the market."
He added that with the Energy Switch Guarantee – a voluntary industry initiative to boost confidence in switching – the process is "simple, speedy and safe".