Money is extra tight when you are moving – which makes it even more frustrating to be paying over-the-odds for your gas and electricity.
It might not be the top of your to-do list when moving home, but switching to the cheapest energy supplier takes a matter of minutes and can save a fortune on your household bills. Here’s a step-by-step guide of what to do both before and after your Move.
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Before the Move...
- Contact your current energy supplier with details of your Move date. You’ll need to give at least 48 hours’ notice but you can make the call as soon as you like. You’ll have the chance to take your current energy plan with you to your new address – even if it’s a fixed-rate tariff – but it pays to shop around first to see if you can find a better deal.
- Find out if you’ll have early exit fees to pay on your current plan. Most suppliers will waive them if you’re taking the same plan with you to your new address. But if you leave the supplier or plan early, you could be charged between £20 and £30 per fuel.
- Arrange for your final bill to be sent to your new address.
- On the last day in your property, take final meter readings – it’s probably easiest to take a quick snap with your phone. You can then cross reference these against your final bill when it arrives.
- Leave details of the energy supplier for your home's new occupants.
After the Move...
- Take meter readings as soon as possible to ensure you get an accurate first bill.
- Contact the incumbent energy supplier with these readings and your Move date – you don’t want to be charged for usage that’s not yours. However, bear in mind you’ll be responsible for the bill as soon as you take over the property, not just from your Move date.
- Settle any final bills from your old supplier, or make sure you’ve got the right refund if one was due.
- If you haven’t taken your old energy supplier with you to your new address, the existing one will automatically put you onto its standard tariff, which is usually the most expensive.
- Get onto a comparison website with your new postcode, energy supplier and plan name and run an energy price comparison. If you find a better deal, make the switch there and then. You don’t need to do anything after that. The new supplier will take care of the entire handover.
Looking to reduce your running costs further? Check out these 11 cost-free ways to cut your energy bills
What if my new property has a prepayment meter?
As it says on the tin, a prepayment meter requires you pay for your gas and electricity usage upfront. To do this, you’ll need to ask the supplier for the relevant key or token.
However, it can be cheaper to switch to a credit meter which enables you to pay for bills monthly or quarterly. Ask your supplier and be prepared to provide proof of address and undergo a credit check.