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Guide to the Latest Deals on Gas and Electricity
The gas and electricity market is constantly evolving and that is why we have created this monthly 'what's new' feature to keep you abreast of the latest developments.
If you're in the market for a new gas and electricity tariff and want to know about the latest deals then check out our price indicator which is updated as soon as a new product is released. Alternatively, head over to our gas and electricity comparison tool and compare tariffs in your area based on your consumption levels.
Now is the time to switch energy provider
Energy is currently top of the agenda politically with Chris Huhne (Energy Secretary) and Ofgem carrying out a full market review to look at amongst other things:
- Confusion - reducing the number of tariffs on offer from each of the BIG 6 energy suppliers
- Competition - removing barriers to entry for new suppliers to compete against the BIG 6 who dominate +98% of all UK households
- Carbon - helping customers and suppliers reduce our carbon emissions and become more energy efficient. Phil Bentley, Centrica Managing Drector, confirmed on the 17th October that the unit price of energy is likely to continue to rise. As such, we need to make our homes as energy efficient as possible to reduce our usage levels.
All of the BIG 6 offer heavily reduced tariffs compared to their most common, yet more expensive, 'Standard' tariffs. On average, UK energy customers can save £195 simply by switching from their supplier's 'standard' tariff to a more competitive deal. That's a 15% price CUT just for switching to a better deal!
Fix your deal and beat the price hikes
Opting for a fixed deal will give you peace of mind in knowing exactly what you'll be paying each month over the next year, no matter how much the providers increase their prices.
Effectively, this means you cut your bills and protect yourself from price hikes for over a year for the same price you'd pay for the market's cheapest variable deal.
As an example, the new market-leading fixed deals are with Ovo Energy 'New Fixed Energy' and EDF Energy ' Fix for 2012' which carry an average annual bill of £1,050. Both deals offer fixed rates for over 12-months with the tariff from EDF Energy being locked in until 31st December 2012.
The most important thing to remember is that these deals aren't going to be around forever, so whether you want the cheapest deal on the market, or protection against price increases, you need to act quickly before they are removed and replaced with more expensive versions.
Choosing the right tariff for you
The cheapest average tariff isn't necessarily the cheapest gas and electricity for you, as the best deal for you depends on how much energy you use and where in the country you live.
It is always worth finding out your overall annual consumption in kilowatt hours (kWh) and using this for your comparison. This will give you a much more accurate result.
The moneysupermarket.com energy comparison tool will help you to decide what the right tariff is for your household.
Energy saving starts at home
Although switching energy providers is a smart way of saving money, you can also reduce your energy bills by making sure your home is as energy efficient as possible.
Uninsulated walls can account for up to 33% of heat lost from a building, and so cavity wall insulation could save you as much as £180 per year. Cavity wall insulation costs around £300 - but you may be entitled to a grant to help pay for it.
The grants are dependent on your personal circumstances, your age and location. You can find more information about the grants in the 'search grants and offers' section of http://www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/
Please note: Rates and deals cited in this article were available at the time of writing