Almost half of households have switched energy provider

More people have switched utility provider than other services.
More people have switched utility provider than other services.
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Nearly half of energy consumers have switched provider, according to a new survey - far more than have changed broadband, TV or bank.

The report, from the Energy Switch Guarantee - an organisation set up by industry body Energy UK - found that the number who had changed utility provider was significantly higher than those who said they had switched home insurance - which saw nearly a third of people switch - broadband at 31 per cent, telephone provider and bank.

Last year a record 5.8 million - or one in five – customers switched electricity supplier and many more have moved to a better deal with their current supplier.

The vast majority of people said they were happy with the switching process, which has been simplified in recent years in a bid to encourage more people to shop around for a better deal.

Pamela Taylor, independent chair of the Energy Switch Guarantee said: “It is encouraging that 83 per cent of consumers say that they’re happy with the switching process especially when record numbers of customers continue to switch every month.

"However, the research shows that the Energy Switch Guarantee still has more work to do to ensure that all consumers experience high levels of satisfaction when it comes to switching and that awareness of the Guarantee increases."

“Wholesale prices have fallen significantly in the last few months – which means there are now many good deals and potential savings on offer. My advice to consumers is not to rely on the price cap for a fair deal when they can switch supplier for a better one and potentially save hundreds of pounds."

Will Kostoris, co-founder of Youtility, said: “It’s encouraging that more people are switching energy suppliers but still far too many of us are stuck in the loyalty trap. This research is concerning as it shows the majority of consumers have not switched supplier in at least four years meaning many of these people will have been moved by their suppliers onto the standard variable rate – the most expensive tariff.

"This means they will be paying hundreds of pounds too much. It’s vital that everyone checks their bills for price increases and looks at the market to see if they can move to a better deal.”