Be An Energy Shopper set to break down barriers preventing GB’s 2.3m students from ‘energy shopping’
- Three-quarters (77%) of bill paying Brits living in rented accommodation say they’ve never switched energy supplier and one in five (20%) is not aware of their right to switch
- University is the first time many students start renting, and they could save up to £200 if they shopped around for their gas and electricity
- Be An Energy Shopper campaign gives the nation’s students the know-how they need
Latest data from Ofgem’s 2014 Consumer Engagement survey shows that a shocking three quarters of bill paying tenants admit they’ve never switched energy or gas supplier in order to try and save their hard earned cash (77% for electricity and 74% for gas). And despite the fact that shopping around could save tenants up to £200 , one in five (20%) admit that they weren’t aware they could switch to a different supplier. The research highlights the sheer lack of awareness among tenants of their rights to shop around to get a better energy deal. Renters are only half as likely to switch compared to homeowners: 26% of renters said they had ever switched gas supplier compared to 47% of homeowners, with similar figures for switching, with many students renting A common myth among renters is that they have to accept the energy suppliers already in place when they move in. But very rarely is this the case. The Be an Energy Shopper website (www.goenergyshopping.co.uk) has been updated to include the key facts, along with top tips for breaking down the barriers which prevent students applying their savvy shopping habits to their energy bills. Dermot Nolan, Ofgem’s CEO, said: “Last year there were 2.3 million students taking HE courses across Great Britain. For many of them, it will be the first time they will rent and join Britain’s 9 million tenants. Yet research has shown that tenants are not shopping around for their energy, and missing out on savings of up to £200. We’ve now updated the Be An Energy Shopper website so that it also addresses tenants’ needs, and therefore they too can get a better deal on their energy.”NUS President Toni Pearce said: “It’s not just homeowners who can shop around for their energy – students can too. So it’s worth taking a moment to bring yourself up to speed on your rights as a tenant. There are substantial savings to be made here so make sure you’re not missing out!”
Top Tips For Budget-Conscious Renters
- Take meter readings when moving in and out of rented accommodation
- Ask your landlord to highlight any supplier tie-ins upfront, including any exit fees which you would have to pay if you wanted to switch suppliers
- Let your landlord know if you are intending to switch supplier
- Remember: if you are responsible for paying the gas and electricity bill, you are entitled to switch at any time, and your landlord cannot unreasonably prevent you from doing so.
Visit www.goenergyshopping.co.uk/en-gb/tenants to find out how to shop around for a better energy deal.