Big Six energy customers overspending by £4 billion

£4 billion overspend
12 May 2016

Are you getting your energy supplied by one of the Big Six? Well, according to a report, collectively, we're overspending by £4 billion because we've stayed on a default tariff, rather than switching energy accounts to something, or somewhere cheaper.

This has gone up 25% £3.4 billion, or if you prefer, £234 for each household in 2015, say First Utility.

With over 85% of households getting their energy from the Big Six, and 70% of those on standard rates which are more expensive, you can see that the ability to switch accounts for cheaper energy still has some way to go, before the UK fully embraces it.

The Competitions and Market Authority gave a slightly lower figure, when talking about how much more people were paying for their energy, needlessly. They said that we were paying £2.5 billion too much on our energy bills.

The CMA are looking at various ways this problem can be tackled - one of them is to introduce a cap on prepaid tariffs, while another involves a database of customers who have been on standard tariffs, so they can be offered cheaper deals after a designated period.

One thing that needs to happen, is more flexibility with the tariffs that can be offered - rules say that energy companies can only offer a certain amount of deals, and if that's opened up, there could be greater savings for the consumer.

First Utility have come up with a graphic, to show which regions are overspending on their energy bills the most.

Ed Kamm, UK managing director for First Utility says: "The big six have been exploiting customers' loyalty for far too long and the scale of the problem has been vastly undervalued."

"We're trying to highlight those savings today because the increase in overspend since last year is shocking. The best thing that you can do is to shop around, get a quote and see how much you can save. It only takes ten minutes and customers deserve to have the money back in their pockets."

As ever, you can shop around for energy deals and often, it really is worth switching as there's massive savings on your energy bill to be made. uSwitch's comparison toll is worth a look, and you can use that here.

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