Ensuring you’re on the cheapest energy deal can be a time-consuming task, constantly monitoring the energy market for new providers and new tariffs. Then you have calculate if they’ll save you money and switch providers if you get lucky and find a cheaper deal.
Fortunately, this can now all be done for you with the recent increase in the number of automatic energy switching service providers that have entered the market.
What is an Auto-switching Energy Service?
Usually, when you want to switch your gas and electricity energy supplier, you need to go directly to the energy supplier and sign up. As energy providers often reserve the best energy deals for new customers, once their fixed tariff term ends the price for your energy will most likely increase and you’ll no longer be getting a good price.
To avoid paying extra money you need to stay vigilant and set reminders so you can switch again to a different energy provider at the end of the term and once again go on the hunt for a new provider.
As this is quite an annoying and time-consuming task, many customers fail to shop around and are usually left paying a very high energy bill. This is because energy suppliers often put people on a standard variable contract by default after their fixed term ends which costs more money, mainly so they can offer lower prices to new customers to entice them in.
This is where an auto-switching energy services comes in.
They take care of the entire process of continuously switching you to the cheapest deal to ensure you’re always saving money on your energy bill, so you don’t have to do anything.
How Does it Work?
The aim of an auto-switching energy service, is to take all the work out of continuously switching energy provider to keep you on a good tariff.
All you have to do is choose an auto-switch provider, go to their website, enter your email, address and postcode and they’ll do the rest. They’ll look up your current provider and energy usage and get to work finding you a better deal.
Once they’ve found a better deal, they’ll send you an email update and take care of the switching process. Once that’s complete they’ll then continually monitor the energy market and switch you again when they find you a cheaper price, it’s that simple.
Which is the Best Auto-Switching Service?
As with all things, a lot depends on what you want from the service. Most of the companies look at for a least a £50 per year saving to trigger a switch and are continuously searching the market for new deals.
Below I’ll go through some of the main providers.
Look After My Bills
This provider is the biggest and probably the most famous after their appearance on Dragons’ Den where they now help over 200,000 people automatically save money on their energy bills.
The service is completely free and there are no exit fees. They also offer an option to do an offline switch to ensure everyone can sign-up for the service.
With over 30,000 customers, Flipper is definitely one provider to consider. They see themselves as more of a subscription service, where they charge you a £30 annual fee to manage your switching process (£2.50/month).
The benefit of this is that they aren’t restricted to choosing energy suppliers that offer a switching bonus, so have a better chance of securing you a lower price.
They’ll also only start charging you the £30 once they’ve found you a deal that saves you at least £50, so quite a good guaranteed ROI, it’s just whether they can find you a better deal than the other switching services to warrant the £30.
This provider also offers their service for free and is rated 4.6/5 on Feefo. They highlight that they’re independent of comparison websites and you can set detailed preferences for which type of energy supplier you want.
For example, you can highlight whether you want to be on a green tariff, receive paper bills or make sure the supplier offers the Warm Home Discount.
This provider offers both a free and paid service. The paid service costs £1.99, £3.49 or £4.99 a month depending on the option you choose and gets you access to all the energy providers in the market.
The difference in paid plans just depends on the level of support you need, with the lowest £1.99/month plan getting you access to all the cheapest energy deals.
The free service offers a restricted list of suppliers with those that only offer a switching bonus. This provider actually can help demonstrate whether it’s best to choose a free or a paid auto-switching service, so it may be worth testing which one works best for you.
Billbuddy offers their service for free, although that does mean they offer a restricted list of potential suppliers. They are rated 4.7/5 on Trustpilot and can also help you reduce the price on your other household expenses like home insurance.
You are able to cancel at any time and they offer great customer service with the use of an AI chatbot.
Will an Auto-switching Service Guarantee I get the Cheapest Energy Deal?
No, not necessarily. A number of factors are taken into consideration when making the switch and not just price. For example, they’ll also make sure the company they switch you to have reasonably good customer service so you aren’t stuck with a supplier that’s horrendous to deal with.
Most of the automatic energy switching services also don’t look at every energy supplier on the market. The free service providers have to restrict themselves to only work with those energy suppliers that offer incentive deals to make the switch. This is how they make money out of the service
If you’re happy to do the switch yourself, which really only takes a few minutes, then make sure to read this post on the cheapest UK energy suppliers. You could find a cheaper deal yourself, although it will take more of your time, so you need to work out what’s the best option for you.
Is it Easy to Cancel An Auto-switching Energy Service?
Cancelling the service is usually very easy as your energy contract is actually with the energy company. Currently all the companies that offer an auto-switching energy service allow you to cancel at any time, even the ones that offer a paid service like Flipper and Switchd.
Once you cancel they’ll just stop actively looking for cheaper energy deals on your behalf and you’ll continue with your current energy provider.
Overall, these new automatic energy switching service providers offer are a brilliant way to save money for some customers. A lot of this comes down to how much effort you’re willing to put towards doing the switch yourself.
If you want the entire switching process done for you so you can focus on other things, like saving money elsewhere, then this is a great option.