Energylinx News

July 24, 2015

Green Deal Scrapped

The "Greenest Government Ever" has announced that they will no longer fund the Green Deal initiative, marking the end of its household energy efficiency programme.

At launch in 2013, it was hailed as "transformational" and the "biggest home improvement programme since the second world war" by ministers. However, The Green Deal scheme which offers cash back and incentives on efficiency measures such as double-glazing, insulation and boilers never quite took off as hoped, with just over 15,000 issued or in the progress of being issued.

The government has no new scheme in place to succeed the green deal and all they have said about the future is that they will work with the building industry and consumer groups on energy efficiency policies. The consumer organisation, Which?, has said that it agrees with the government stopping the green deal scheme as it was currently throwing money at a deal that had not taken off. The latest figures up to June 2015, showed there were 9,999 "live" Green Deal plans, where all measures had been installed in a home, and a further 5,597 in process. Tens of thousands of vouchers have been issued under the Green Deal Home Improvement Fund, with payments worth £114 million paid out to finance 27,140 measures. A total of £171 million has been committed under the fund.

However, others have criticised the move of scrapping the scheme without any replacement. The home insulation industry says it will create huge uncertainty for firms while the government works out what the replacement policy should be as there is no doubting the need for a scheme to finance improvements in home energy.

Currently the UK has some of the worst insulated houses Europe, and saving energy is by far the cheapest way of the UK cutting carbon emissions and bringing people out of fuel poverty.

Posted on July 24, 2015 at 01:42 PM

July 21, 2015

Npower delay results in free energy for 1,000 customers

Today Energy regulator, OFGEM, and the Energy Ombudsman secured free energy for Npower customers who have had their complaints backed by the Energy Ombudsman but have waited more than 28 days for the problems to be resolved.

The decision will see Npower writing off the debt of roughly 1,000 customers that have been affected. They will also receive free energy until the complaint is resolved. The majority of customers that this affects had complained about billing issues. OFGEM figures show that Npower received the most customer complaints on 2014.

Commenting on the announcement, Chief Ombudsman Lewis Shand Smith says:

"Ombudsman Services decisions are legally binding upon the energy companies and should be implemented within 28 days of a consumer agreeing to a decision. Failure to implement remedies is detrimental to the complainant, damaging to npower's reputation and undermines the value of the ombudsman service. In May we introduced new requirements that mean that failure to implement remedies in full within 28 days are met with tougher financial penalties.

We are therefore pleased with today's announcement and have worked very closely with both OFGEM and npower to ensure the best outcomes for consumers who have been affected by delays in remedy delivery. We welcome the efforts npower has already made to bring this matter to a satisfactory conclusion for consumers and are confident that they will continue to work to ensure that remedies are implemented within the required timescales."

For more information you can read the OFGEM statement by clicking here.

Posted on July 21, 2015 at 02:41 PM

July 17, 2015

Is your energy tariff ending soon?

The following energy tariffs are coming to an end:

British Gas - Price Promise July 2015
Co-operative Energy - Fixed Price July 2015
EDF Energy - Blue +Price Promise July 2015
First Utility - iSave Fixed v14 July 2015 and iSave Fixed July 2015 (v20)
Sainsbury's Energy - Price Promise July 2015
ScottishPower - Online Fixed Price Energy July 2015

If you are on one of these energy tariffs then NOW is the time to shop for your energy as you will likely be moved to your suppliers' standard tariff, and may end up paying more than you should for your energy.

To avoid this you can do a quick and simple energy comparison with Energylinx that will show you what you could save. You might be surprised!

On average our customer save £321.92*. Click here to be taken to our impartial comparison tool.

* 20% of all users over the last 60 days (18 May - 16 July) achieved a saving of at least £321.92

Posted on July 17, 2015 at 02:37 PM

July 16, 2015

Switching numbers up for June

Energy UK have said that over quarter of a million households switched their electricity supplier in June 2015.

The latest electricity switching data shows 258,658 households chose a new supplier in June 2015 - 73,490 of those switches went to smaller suppliers. This is more than a quarter of all switches (28 per cent). This is above average for 2015, so far.

June's switching figures are higher than those from the same period in 2014 and 2013, which were 227,748 in June 2014 and 215,076 in June 2013.

Lawrence Slade, chief executive of Energy UK said:

"Switching numbers are still high even though it's summer when people may not be thinking so much about their heating bills. Over a quarter of a million people found new deals in June with well over a quarter of those making the switch to smaller suppliers. It only takes a matter of minutes to compare what's out there and, with around 23 tariffs from 18 suppliers offering deals coming in at under £1,000 a year, everyone can shop around for the best energy offers and make this a summer of switching."

Thinking about switching your energy supplier? Why not see what you could save if you did. Click here to be taken to our free and impartial energy comparison calculator.

Posted on July 16, 2015 at 02:58 PM

July 15, 2015

British Gas lowers gas prices

British Gas has announced that it will cut household gas prices by 5% - the energy giant's second gas price reduction in six months.

In January of this year, British Gas were the second of the "Big Six" to reduce gas prices for their customers. Today British Gas is the first to FURTHER reduce their gas price by 5%. The two price cuts together offer almost seven million British Gas customers an average saving of £72 per year.

Commenting on the announcement, Mark Hodges, Managing Director of British Gas, said:

"British Gas is committed to offering competitively priced products, and the price cut we're announcing today demonstrates that. It's the second price reduction from British Gas this year, bringing bills down by an annual average of £72.

There are a range of costs that make up energy bills, some decreasing and others increasing. This reduction reflects our lower projected total costs for 2015 and 2016 and we're pleased that customers will see the benefits in their gas bills ahead of next winter.

We will also continue to help our customers understand and control their bills by leading the national drive to install smart meters, and by developing innovative products that offer them the latest technology to manage their energy usage."

The latest price cut takes effect from 27th of August and will effect customers on British Gas' Standard and Fix and Fall Tariffs. The tariff will be the cheapest British Gas has sold in four years.

Interested in comparing British Gas against your current supplier? There is nowhere easier than here at Energylinx. We offer a free and impartial energy comparison tool for your home that compares against the whole domestic market. Click here to be taken to our stress-free service.

Posted on July 15, 2015 at 09:48 AM

July 7, 2015

CMA Publishes Case for Energy Market Reform

The Competition and Markets Authority have today published their Summary of Provisional Findings(PDF, 615KB, 55 pages) in to the energy market.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) began looking at the UK energy market in July 2014, after a referral by OFGEM which was concerned that competition was "not working as well as it should for consumers".

The provisional finding's paper highlighted a range of problems that are believed to be holding competition in the market back. The issues range from lack of consumer engagement to poor regulation.

The CMA's carried out an extensive survey of 7,000 people across the UK and found:

34% had never considered switching energy supplier
36% either did not think it was possible or did know that if it was possible to change one (or more) of the following: tariff, payment method or supplier
56% had never switched supplier
72% said they never switched tariff with an existing supplier, did not know whether it was possible or did not know if they had done so.

As a result, the CMA believe that there is around 70% of consumers on a standard variable tariff. These customers are paying considerably more for their energy than those on a non-standard tariff.

CMA state that disengagement from customers has allowed energy suppliers to gain a position of unilateral market power concerning their inactive customer base and if these customers were to switch they could save (on average) £160 a year on their dual fuel bills.

Energy UK, which represents the major suppliers, argued that this was not an accusation that customers had been ripped off. Lawrence Slade, Chief Executive of Energy UK said of today's findings: "Customers have not been overcharged but money may still be saved when people shop around for deals that suit their individual circumstances. There is greater choice for customers. It is easy to switch and a few minutes online could save households money and get them the deal that is right for them".

Energylinx urges everyone to compare energy tariffs and ensure that you are not overpaying for your energy. This is a straight-forward process that will take less than 5 minutes and could save you a significant amount. You can do this online by clicking here. If you would rather speak with someone, one of our energy advisors are on hand to answer any questions you may have. Just call 0800 847 7077.

Energylinx welcome the findings and remedies recommended by the CMA and look forward to reading their final report in to the energy industry in December.

Posted on July 7, 2015 at 01:12 PM

July 2, 2015

Npower launch New Version of their Mobile App

Npower have made improvements to their mobile energy app that promises to make the account management for their customers simpler.

The updated version is now available on iPhone an Android and provides a unique and interactive platform for customers to engage with their energy.

Key features of the app:

• Npower customers can view actual and forecasted consumption and key events on an interactive timeline where they can click through to view bills and see a breakdown of cost, CO2 and kWh.

• Customers can submit meter readings.

• Npower customers can view their bill and payment history.

• Customers are also able to make additional payments through the app.

• Customers can view their meter read history including reads that they and agents have submitted, as well as when a read has been estimated.

• Npower customers can view account activity including past and future events, view their next bill and payment date, when their next meter read or reassessment will happen and when their meter is next due to be inspected.

• Customer can view their energy usage in cost, kwh or CO2. View a seasonal split or compare their energy usage to the same period last year. They can view actual and estimated consumption in a bar chart, line graph or table and can compare with previous years.

• Customers will have the ability to change personal details, password, paperless billing options, Meter read reminder settings and contact and marketing preferences.

• The app has a background which can be personalised.

• Struggling with something? Customers can use web chat to get a quick response from one of Npower's customer service advisors.

If you are an Npower customer then this app is currently available to download and is rated an impressive 4/5 stars on Android and in the Apple store. Looking to switch to Npower? Energylinx offer a convenient energy switching service. Click here to be taken to our domestic energy calculator to see what Npower can do for you.

Posted on July 2, 2015 at 11:46 AM

June 16, 2015

Is your energy tariff coming to an end?

The following energy tariffs come to an end on Tuesday the 30th of June:

EDF Energy - Fixed Price 2015
EDF Energy - Blue +Price Promise June 2015
First Utility - iSave Fixed v12 June 2015
nPower - Online Priice Fix June 2015
ScottishPower - Online Fixed Price Energy June 2015

If you are currently on one of these tariffs then you will be moved to your supplier's standard tariff. This could mean that you end up paying more than you should for your energy.

Shopping for a new energy tariff? Look no further! Energylinx compare the whole domestic energy market and offer free and impartial advice on the cheapest tariff available to you. To do a quick and simple comparison, click here.

Posted on June 16, 2015 at 12:21 PM

June 11, 2015

1.5m households have switched electricity supplier in 2015

Figures from Energy UK have shown that in the first five months of 2015, 1.5 million households switched their electricity supplier.

Small suppliers gained 65,052 electricity accounts in May, which is 26 per cent of all switches. This was on trend for the year so far with a quarter of all switches in 2015, going to smaller suppliers.

Lawrence Slade, Chief Executive of Energy UK, said:

"There are now even more suppliers for customers to choose from. It is great to see thousands of households continuing to take advantage of this by switching electricity provider each month. Many customers will be coming off their fixed energy deals over the coming weeks so now is a good time to look around to see what deals are on offer."

Looking to switch your energy supplier? Look no further! Energylinx compare the whole market and offer free and impartial advice on the cheapest tariff available to you. Click here to be taken to our hassle-free calculator.

Posted on June 11, 2015 at 04:54 PM

May 26, 2015

500,000 households given pre-pay meters as they struggle with their energy bills

Over the last 6 years more than half a million people have had prepayment meters installed in to their home without warrant. The meters are installed as an alternative to cutting the energy supply of customers that are struggling to pay their energy bills.

Today, industry regulator, OFGEM launched an investigation as they believe a prepayment meter should only be installed "as a last resort" and that energy suppliers should be offering their customers alternative solutions first. There has been a year on year increase in the number of prepayment meters being installed. In 2009 there were 63,000 court order prepayment meters, by 2014 there was 100,000.

A statement from an OFGEM Spokesman said:

"Installing pre-payment meters under warrant should be used as a last resort by energy suppliers when consumers get into debt. It is a way to prevent a customer from being disconnected. Suppliers can only install a prepayment meter where it is safe and reasonably practical for the consumer to use."

Prepay energy customers often pay more on their energy bills than those who pay direct debit and the Citizen Advice Bureau believe these customers also get unfairly treated and recently ran a "Fair Play for Prepay" campaign. This was an attempt to have prepay paid energy customers treated better by energy suppliers. Chief Executive of the Citizen's Advice Burea, Gillian Guy, said: "Prepay customers have been getting a raw deal for too long. We do a huge amount for customers on pay as you go meters."

Struggling to pay your energy bills? Click here to be taken to OFGEM's site and see what alternative solutions are available to you.

Posted on May 26, 2015 at 09:55 AM