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The energy supplier switching process

Wind farmHow does the energy switching process work? compares the prices of all registered gas and electricity suppliers in the UK and finds you the best energy deal for your home, based on your own personal circumstances.

What happens once I've chosen a new supplier?

The supplier will contact you to confirm the date on which your new service will commence.

We would recommend that you take a meter reading on this date and your new supplier will either arrange this or contact you to ask you to provide a reading.

The reading you take will be used as the closing reading on your accounts with your existing supplier and as the opening reading with your new supplier.

How long will it take until my new supplier supplies my energy?

Ideally, the switch should take no longer than 17 days from the date you arranged to change supplier. This allows for a 14 day "cooling off period" where you can change your mind about switching.

This comes after energy regulator Ofgem challenged gas and electricity companies to cut their switching times.

While many suppliers have are on board with this faster switching, some smaller, independent companies might not yet be able to do so.

Before you switch, ask the new company if they're able to switch customers faster.

If the switch takes a lot longer than expected, you can make a complaint. See our step-by-step guide on complaining to your energy supplier.

How seamless will the change of supply be?

Moving to a new supplier shouldn't be risky. Most suppliers are large, trusted companies and all of them are regulated to ensure standards of service.

In the majority of cases the transfer is entirely seamless, and from a regulatory viewpoint both Ofgem keeps a close check on this.

You won't need any new pipes, cables or meters if you switch suppliers. There will not be any interruption to your gas or electricity supply.

What about my existing direct debit?

If you have a direct debit with your current supplier, we suggest you cancel your direct debit authority with your current supplier - only after you have paid your final bill and confirmed the transfer of your supply.

Your existing energy supplier will confirm this with you.

What about my existing debt?

If you are in debt to your current supplier, or have a bill outstanding that has been unpaid for more than 28 days, your existing supplier may prevent your switch until you have paid the outstanding amount.

If this happens, your existing supplier will write to you to inform you.

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