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Switching energy suppliers

Compare energy suppliers

Unprecedented market conditions mean we can’t switch your energy right now.

But if you run a comparison and leave your email, we'll let you know as soon as we can. 

Compare a huge range of suppliers and deals from across the market

Make the best choice from plenty of energy suppliers we work with, including all the big brands, and take control of your energy bills. 

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Switching your energy supplier?

When switching is available, you can be with your new supplier within 21 days – with no interruption to your service. Everything is handled by your new provider, so all you need to do is compare and go.

  • clipboard icon

    It takes five minutes

    Pop in your postcode and tell us about your energy usage – using your most recent bill will give you the best results.

  • search icon

    We'll search for tariffs

    We’ll search the market for deals and show you what you can get if you switch suppliers with us.

  • energy icon

    You're good to go

    Once you’ve started your switch you won’t need to do a thing – your new provider will take care of everything.

How to compare energy suppliers

Bear in mind that right now it's best to stay with your current tariff. This is because there aren't any deals to switch to.

You can still run a comparison and leave your email with us. Once switching is available, we'll get back to you with the deals you can get.

In normal circumstances, you can browse a wide range of energy suppliers to find the best deal for yourself.

Comparing energy tariffs is simple: you give us a few details about where you live, what type of fuel you use, how many people live in your house or flat, and when it tends to be occupied. Once you’ve entered the info, it’s quick and easy to get an estimate of what your energy bills would look like if you switched suppliers.

When you’ve found a deal you’re happy with, you can confirm the switch. Just provide a few more details and then the switching process begins – and it will be complete within 21 days.

If you’re a tenant, you can switch supplier if you pay the supplier directly. If your landlord pays the bill out of your rent, you will not be able to switch without discussing it with them first, and they will need to make the switch themselves.

How do I switch energy suppliers?

When switching energy providers is available, it's normally a quick and hassle-free process.

It helps if you’ve got a recent energy bill to hand – but don’t worry if not, we can still guide you through the process. Starting the switching process takes a matter of minutes, and you should be with your new supplier within 21 days. And don’t worry, there’ll be no interruption to your supply during the switch, and there’ll be no work undertaken inside or outside your home.

Here's how the switching process usually works:

  1. Find a recent energy bill or use our estimation tool. You need to know who your supplier is, and what tariff you’re on. If you don’t know your energy usage, our tool will estimate this for you.
  2. Run a quote & select a tariff. In a matter of minutes you’ll see which suppliers and tariffs could save you the most money. Once you’ve selected the tariff to switch to, you’ll be directed to a confirmation page. This will ask for direct debit details and your meter readings, which helps your new supplier to create a new bill and allows your old supplier to send a final bill.
  3. Check your old account balance. If you’re in credit when you switch, the money should be refunded to your account automatically, but it’s worth checking for the payment and chasing it up if necessary. Similarly, keep an eye out for any final payments that may be in arrears from your old provider.
  4. Allow for around three weeks for the switch to complete. Switching is a simple procedure that doesn’t need any rewiring or work outside your property. In fact, you shouldn’t notice any difference apart from lower bills. It typically takes up to 21 days for a full switch, which includes the obligatory two-week ‘cooling off’ period, during which you can choose to cancel the switch free of charge.

Tips for switching energy supplier

Customer service is a big issue, so you might want to do a bit of online research about your chosen supplier to see what other people are saying about them.

Some people are reluctant to move to a smaller energy supplier with an unfamiliar brand because of the risk they might go bust. But it’s important to know that the energy market regulator, Ofgem, maintains a safety net so that, if a supplier fails, its customers will be transferred to another company with a guarantee of no loss of supply of either gas or electricity. You can find out more about this here.

You’ll also notice that there are different types of tariff. These include Economy 7 tariffs, where electricity is charged at a lower rate between midnight and 7am, and so-called ‘green’ tariffs, where the supplier commits to supporting the generation of environmentally friendly energy.

An Economy 7 deal only makes sense if you can be sure that you will use energy heavily during the low-rate hours, perhaps by using storage heaters and setting your dishwasher and washing machine to run overnight.

With a green tariff, you still get the same gas and electricity as everyone else. But you know your supplier will arrange for green energy to be fed into the grid, reducing the overall dependence on fossil fuels.

If you’re looking to switch energy supplier for your business, you should remember that commercial and domestic energy tariffs can be quite different. Learn more by reading our business energy pages.


This video information is available as a Text Transcript

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If you have a standard variable rate tariff – one that has no fixed end date – you won't have to pay an exit fee if you switch.

If you’re on a fixed-term tariff, you might have to pay an exit fee if you switch – it depends on the tariff you have (you’ll find details on your supplier’s website, on your bill or in your welcome pack). But even if you’re on a tariff that imposes exit fees, these cannot be charged if you’re within 49 days of the tariff’s end date.

Your provider will write to you when your tariff is coming to an end so that you have six weeks or so to find another tariff.

If you decide to switch earlier and your tariff imposes exit charges, you will have to pay for each fuel. So if the tariff has a £30 exit fee and you’re switching both gas and electricity, you’ll pay £60.

Exit fees vary according to the tariff, but it’s always important to make sure that the amount you save by switching is greater than the amount you pay in fees to your old supplier.

The amount you pay for your energy will vary according to how much you use. The prices you see quoted are based on average consumption as defined by Ofgem, the market regulator.

The cheapest tariff on the market will usually be a fixed-rate, fixed-term dual fuel (gas and electricity) deal, paid monthly by direct debit.

Note that it is the price per unit of energy that is fixed – the amount you pay will vary in line with your usage. With a variable rate tariff, the rate per unit can go up or down, leaving you vulnerable to price hikes.

Variable rate deals are also known as ‘default’ tariffs. If you are on a fixed-term deal and do not switch at the end of the term, you will move to your supplier’s default tariff. If you’ve never switched or haven’t switched for a few years, you’re likely to be on a default tariff

Fixed rate tariffs tend to be cheaper than variable rate alternatives, usually by a significant margin. 

If you have a prepayment meter, your tariff will be more expensive than the equivalent credit tariff, where you pay for your energy after you have used it.

There are two price caps: one for standard variable rate or default tariffs, and one for prepayment tariffs. These are calculated and managed by Ofgem and limit the amount that suppliers can charge their customers.

The caps are reviewed every six months. As of February 2022, the price cap is currently set at £1,971 for the average household on standard variable tariffs and £2,017 for prepayment tariffs. They will be reviewed again in August 2022.

There is no cap on fixed tariff prices.

The number of new energy providers on the market has increased significantly, with some now offering niche products that cater for a range of requirements. For example, tariffs can now be chosen by payment structure and by type.

Payment structure:

  • Fixed (a unit of energy costs the same throughout the year)
  • Variable rate (the cost of a unit of energy can change)

Type:

  • Single fuel (gas)
  • Single fuel (electricity)
  • Dual fuel (one bill for both your gas & electricity)
  • Prepayment meter (pay-as-you-go for your energy, topping up via a ‘key’ or ‘smart card’)
  • Economy 7/Economy 10 (an energy plan that supplies cheaper electricity during off-peak, or night-time hours)
  • Green energy (the energy you use is ‘matched’ by purchases of renewable energy sources such as wind or solar)

Some suppliers offer a so-called 'dual fuel' discount to encourage customers to sign up for both gas and electricity. This kind of discount makes the price lower than the cost of buying gas and electricity separately from that provider.

However, it’s important to compare dual fuel deals against the price of getting electricity from one provider and gas from another. You might find that ‘single’ tariff deals work out cheaper overall, but you’ll have two different suppliers, bills and points of contact to deal with.

It is possible to switch from a prepayment meter to a credit meter if you are not in debt to your current provider. You might have to go through a credit check.

Some suppliers charge a fee to change your meter, but there are plenty that don’t.

If you're unable to switch from your prepayment meter, you may be able to switch to a cheaper prepayment tariff. 

As of now, it's cheaper for you to stick with your current supplier.

Increases in wholesale energy prices have prompted many suppliers to withdraw tariffs from the market, with the result that consumers currently have fewer-than-usual deals to choose from. 

As it stands, some suppliers are still offering deals and you’re still able to switch. But at MoneySuperMarket, we’ve taken the decision not to offer these through our switching service. This is because we don’t think they’re a good fit for most of our customers.  

We’re hopeful that prices will come down in future and that new, fixed-rate tariffs will come back into the market. At which point, we’ll once again be able to switch you to money-saving tariffs. 

For now, if you’re on a fixed-rate tariff it’s likely to be much cheaper than deals that you can switch to. So we’d recommend you stay put.  

If you’re on a variable tariff at the moment, you can still run a comparison with us. But as we’ve mentioned, your choice of deals will be limited. And more importantly, the deals are likely to be more expensive than staying put. 

The good news is that if you’re on a variable tariff there are no exit fees to pay. So when better deals return, you’ll be free to switch whenever you like with no financial penalty.  

In the meantime, it's best to leave us your email. When switching becomes available again, we'll get in touch with you about the deals you can get.

We help you compare prices from all the energy suppliers in the UK, so you can find the right deal for your needs.

It only takes a few minutes to see what you can get. All you have to do is answer some simple questions, and we'll show you tariffs and offers from all the energy companies.

When switching is available, we can help you switch to tariffs from most companies directly through MoneySuperMarket. Just click the green button, answer a few more questions, and you’re done.

If you’d prefer to talk to someone, you can call us on 0800 177 7087. We can answer any questions you might have, and even help switch you to a new deal over the phone when the time comes.

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But you might have other questions. Do we provide access to all the companies operating in a given market? Do we have commercial relationships or ownership ties that might make us feature one company above another?

We commit to providing you with clear and informative answers on all points such as this, so we have gathered the relevant information on this page.

 

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