Ofgem have revealed plans to protect prepayment customers and encourage more switching of non prepayment meter customers in the domestic energy industry. These plans have been formed following a two year investigation into the “Big Six” by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

The investigation also revealed that two-thirds of householders are disengaged and paying more for their gas and electricity than customers who have switched supplier. This isn’t a surprise given that the average switcher who uses Energy Relief is saving hundreds of pounds per year on gas and electricity.

However, this morning there has been plenty of criticism for Ofgem’s proposals to shake up the energy market because it puts too much onus on the customer to be aware of the need to search for cheaper deals. As part of Energy Relief’s mission the team will head around the UK visiting Corporate Partners holding switching days which creates the awareness within the staff of these businesses and encourages them to spread the word on switching, whilst allowing the switcher to donate their switching fee to a charity or community project of choice.

Suppliers will also be required to hand over details of any customer who has been on an expensive default (rollover) tariff for three years or more in a bid to encourage them to switch. On the surface this seems like a great thing and the regulator will pilot a database service next year, which will allow rival suppliers to offer a better value deal to those customers - but will they only be able to switch to those who approach them? Surely these people should be told to head to a switching website to find out ALL the possible tariffs open to them. Ultimately resulting in them switching to the cheapest and saving hundreds per year.

To find out more about Energy Relief and how you can switch, save and support your favoured charity or community project email me on tom@energyrelief.co.uk