Energy bills and tariffs can be very complicated and it is often difficult to understand whether you are getting the best deal. If you haven't switched your energy supplier in the last three years, there’s a good chance you could save money.

YOUR ENERGY SUPPLY

Comprehensive details on all aspects of your energy supply including billing, paying your bill, your meter, common problems, making a complaint, claiming back credit and moving home are available from Citizens Advice.

GETTING THE BEST DEAL

If you haven't switched your energy supplier in the last three years, there’s a good chance you could save money by changing supplier or upgrading to a new tariff. Switching either your gas or electricity so that you get both from the same supplier will qualify you for dual fuel discount and managing your account online and paying by Direct Debit could benefit from even further discounts.

With such a wide range of deals available from Energy companies, it’s easy to become confused about what’s on offer.

A guide to switching energy supplier is available at the OFGEN web-site.

A list of Internet price comparison services accredited with the Consumer Confidence Code comparing the different offerings from domestic gas and electricity suppliers, is available at this link.

Select a comparison site and enter your location, current supplier(s) and usage or spend to find out how much you could save by switching to a new supplier.

Advice on how to switch energy suppliers is also available from MoneyHelper.

For an explanation of the various energy tariffs go to the Which? Switch site.

MANAGING YOUR ENERGY ACCOUNT ON-LINE

By opting for paperless bills and managing your account on-line you can obtain further discounts on your energy bills. By submitting regular monthly meter readings you avoid costly estimated bills and receipt of monthly electronic bills enable you to keep a check on your energy usage and, where appropriate, take steps to reduce your future consumption.

For a detailed guide to reading your gas and electric meters click on the appropriate link(s) below:

Gas

Electricity

UNDERSTANDING YOUR BILL

Whether you receive paper or electronic energy bills they can appear complicated and difficult to understand, because of the number and complexity of the tariffs. However you should not just file them away but read and understand them to check that you are paying the right amount and that the bill is accurate.

A detailed explanation of your energy bills can be found at the Which? Switch site.

For an overview of your energy bill, including ways to pay, problems with your bill and problems paying your bill, go to the Citizens Advice web-site.

CHECKING THAT YOU ARE NOT PAYING TOO MUCH FOR YOUR GAS OR ELECTRICITY

To get the best service from your energy company and avoid paying too much when the prices are increased click on the link below:

SMART METERS

Smart meters are the new generation of gas and electricity meters being rolled out across Great Britain. They show you how much energy you are using in pounds and pence, in near real time and bring an end to estimated bills. Roll-out of the Smart meters has already started and the Government wants every home in Britain to have their old gas and electricity meters replaced by Smart meters by 2019/2020.

A Smart meter will come with a separate small screen energy display which you can site anywhere in your property and will give you up to date information on your gas and electricity usage and roughly how much it is costing you in pounds and pence.

A full explanation of smart meters and how to get one is available from smartenergygb.org.

Additional information on Smart meters go to the uSwitch web-site or alternatively GOV.UK .

Electricity Monitors that work with the existing style meter are currently available from some suppliers and you can request one on-line by selecting your supplier at this link.

OFFICE OF GAS AND ELECTRICITY MARKETS (ofgem)

The Office of the Gas and Electricity Markets (ofgem) regulate the electricity and gas markets in Great Britain by promoting competition, wherever appropriate, and regulating the monopoly companies which run the gas and electricity networks,

COMPLAINING TO YOR ENERGY SUPPLIER

A beginner’s guide to complaining to energy suppliers is available from MoneyAware.

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