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How to switch energy supplier

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Last updated: 07 April 2021

So you've decided you need to switch energy supplier. Now what? Here we will guide you step by step on the simple process to a better, cheaper energy supply.

Use a price comparison website

Price comparison sites, like usave, search for the best energy prices across the market so that you don't have to. Our energy comparison service is designed to save you both time and money, and ultimately make the whole process of switching your energy supplier simpler and more easily manageable. 

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Have your usage information on hand

To achieve more precise results about how much a new household energy tariff will cost you, you will need to enter your household's energy use. You can enter your energy use in kilowatt hours (kWh), or by the amount you spend. You can find these details on your latest energy bill. 

Don't worry if you do not have this on hand though; when you compare with usave we have a helpful energy consumption estimator. All we need are details about how many people live in your household and how many rooms you have available, and we will estimate your househould energy usage. We will also compare the result against your current supplier and tariff, so you will be able to quickly and easily see how much you will can save by switching.

Pick a new plan

Since there are now over 50 energy suppliers, you are spoilt for choice. To narrow down the results of your energy comparison, you can filter out any deals that do not apply to you by refining your search. For example, you can choose only to view plans without a cancellation fee, fixed-rate plans or simply which plan is most popular in your region.

Finalising the switch

Now you've chosen your plan, all that is left to do is to finalise your energy switch. Enter your full address and bank details if you have opted for the direct debit (which is normally the cheapest option), and voilà, you've successfully switched. Your new energy supplier will be notified of their new customer and you should be contacted within two weeks.

Once you have made your switch you have 17 days before moving over to your new supplier (3 days plus a 14 day cooling off period during which you can go back on the switch if you want). You don’t have to do anything during this period, all the leg work will be completed by your new supplier. They will contact your old supplier and agree on a switch over date. Don't worry – your energy supply will not be interrupted and you will be notified on the switch over date decided.

For more details on switching periods, read our guide on how long it takes to switch energy suppliers.

Keep an eye on the small print

Always check if you will be charged a cancellation fee; bigger is often better, but not when concerning bills! More and more energy suppliers now allow you to switch energy up to 49 days ahead of your current plan's end without charging exit fees. They are most commonly administered when you decide to leave your fixed rate tariff early. Make sure you cancel your direct debit with your old supplier to prevent being billed twice.

If you are unsure about whether it is the correct time for you to switch or not, read our guide on when to switch energy supplier without penalty.

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Michael Quinn

Author: Michael Quinn

Michael is a dedicated author helping usave to write guides, blogs and news for the last four years. When not writing articles, you can usually find him at wine tasting events or having a political debate on the night tube.

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