Finding the cheapest electricity supplier is super easy. With the Energy Switch Guarantee with no disruption to your service, switching electricity supplier is one of the quickest ways to reduce your bills. You can compare electricity suppliers in just 60 seconds.
What type of electricity tariffs are available?
With so many options, it can be confusing navigating the best tariff for you. However, once you think about how you use electricity in your home or business, it becomes much simpler to choose an electricity tariff. You can pick from the following:
Choosing a fixed electricity tariff offers security surrounding the amount you pay to the energy supplier each month. This means that you have a set price for each unit of electricity you use. These tariffs offer protection against price increases.
It’s important to note that your bill is based on consumption so it may appear to be higher during colder months. Energy suppliers usually average this cost out over the year.
A standard variable contract, as it is sometimes known, is very popular in the UK. Even though the cost of electricity goes up and down in line with the electricity market, there are no exit fees and you’re free to switch suppliers at any time.
Most electricity suppliers offer green tariffs providing you with energy from renewable sources. These tariffs can be either fixed or variable and are often cheaper than standard tariffs.
Dual Fuel Tariffs
Choosing separate electricity and gas suppliers can create more admin, so many UK households select a dual fuel tariff for more convenience. Dual fuel tariffs can be either fixed or variable and may offer discounts, but this varies by supplier.
Economy 7 or 10
Economy 7 & 10 tariffs are for those night owls who use more electricity at night. The cost of electricity is much cheaper after a certain time and the price per unit can fluctuate based on the marker price.
Pre-payment tariffs allow households to purchase electricity in advance of using it. You can top up your electricity meter online, or instore via a card or key. This is a great way to closely manage your electricity spend.
It is important to note that unit prices are usually higher than other tariffs and there’s always the risk of running out of electricity at an inconvenient time.
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Average UK Electricity Prices by Region
The maps below show the regional breakdown of electricity prices per kWh, fixed electricity costs and average electricity bills in the UK. While the regions may look a little strange they reflect the local Distribution Network Operator.
All data comes from GOV.UK with data for Northern Ireland excluded because costs are calculated slightly differently.
Electricity Prices Per kWh
Sometimes referred to as the unit price of electricity, the price per kWh is based on usage. The map above shows average regional electricity prices per kWh based for standard electricity tariffs (as opposed to Economy 7 tariffs) across all payment types (prepaid, credit and direct debit).
|Region||Average variable unit price
(pence per kWh)
|Merseyside & North Wales||15.18p|
Fixed Electricity Costs
The fixed cost of electricity, as the name suggests, is how much you have to pay regardless of how much electricity you use. It is usually shown as a daily standing charge, priced in pence per day. The map above shows the average cost per region.
|Region||Average Daily Standing Charge
(Pence per Day)
|Merseyside & North Wales||21.53p|
Average Electricity Bills
Average annual electricity bills simply reflect the average annual fixed costs added to average annual variable consumption amount. However, calculating average annual variable consumption (in terms of kWh) is not as simple as it seems. Ofgem (the industry regulator) uses 3,100 kWh per year as their average, whereas GOV.UK uses 3,800 kWh per year.
However, the latest stats show that the average UK household in 2017 used 3,374 kWh. Therefore that’s what we’ve used to calculate the numbers above. However, you should be aware that we’re using a UK-wide usage average whereas usage almost certainly varies by region as well, so the differences between regions are likely even greater than those shown on the map.
|Region||Average Annual Electricity Bill|
|Merseyside & North Wales||£590.88|
How can I reduce my electricity bill?
Whilst switching your electricity supplier will save you the largest amount, you can change simple everyday habits to make sure you have some extra cash in your pocket every month.
Turn appliances off at the wall
Leaving your appliances on standby can really kill all your electricity savings throughout the year. Make it apart of your night-time schedule or integrate it with your smart home schedule. The Energy Savings Trust estimates that the average household will save up to £80 a year with this simple change.
You may be reluctant to throw out an appliance that is still going strong, but if they have a poor energy efficiency rating, they could be the invisible money pit in your home. The Energy Savings Trust estimates that simply upgrading a fridge freezer to an A+++ model from an A+ will save you £300 a year.
Get a smart meter
Keeping a watchful eye on your electricity usage can ensure your bills are not running away. It will be a reminder of how much leaving a light, TV or even appliances cost. You can use the smart meter to identify anything in your home that is driving up the cost of your electricity bills.
If you’re struggling to keep on top of your energy management, you want to choose a dual fuel tariff so you only need to switch energy suppliers once each year.
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