About Time: You Saved Money Whilst RentingBy Angelica Malin
Moving out and renting your first property is an exciting next step for many of us, but sometimes it can prove to be a costly process. There are often hidden costs and extra fees added on, but the main cost for many renters is the energy bills.
Many renters get caught out by not fully understanding who is responsible for finding and changing energy suppliers to get the best deal. As the property is owned by the landlord, renters could be forgiven for thinking it is therefore the landlord’s responsibility. Money Super Market found 12% of tenants think landlords are responsible for shopping around for a better energy deal, even when the tenant is paying the bill. But this is not the case.
49% of tenants are given no information on their energy supplier at the start of their tenancy and 10% don’t even know who their supplier is, and therefore 18% of renters are missing out on potentially huge savings by switching their energy supplier.
According to a new analysis looked at by Money Super Market, UK renters are missing out on savings worth over £1 billion collectively because they didn’t know they could switch suppliers, had bills included in their rent, failed to discuss the matter with their landlord, or simply were not allowed to. That’s as much as £359 per household.
Stephen Murray, energy expert at MoneySuperMarket, said: “When it comes to energy switching in rented property, there is some confusion over who takes responsibility. In an ideal world, you would be provided with information on who the supplier is, and the average bill size at the start of the agreement. Renters would then be encouraged to shop around for a cheaper tariff and make the switch. However, it seems this isn’t happening is far too many instances.
“Ofgem has stated categorically that tenants are entitled to change supplier at any time if they are responsible for paying the energy bill, and should not be unreasonably prevented from doing this. There are savings of up to £359 per household to be made by switching suppliers, so it pays to take control and shop around. But it’s always important to keep your landlord up to speed with any change you plan to make.”
According to the rules set out by Ofgem, the energy market regulator, if a tenants name is on the bill, they have the right to switch supplier. So it is worth looking into as it could end up saving you money throughout the year. Even if the bill has the name of the landlord then it’s still worth talking to them about switching as it could still save you money.