What happens if my energy supplier stops trading?

Around 410,000 Green Network Energy and Simplicity Energy customers learned this week that their providers are leaving the energy market, but the good news is there will be no interruption to energy supplies.

If your energy provider announces that it is stopping trading, any credit balance you have with them is protected and guaranteed by the energy regulator Ofgem. It will assign you a new energy supplier, so you won’t have to do anything. Your energy supply won’t be disrupted, so the only change you’ll notice is that you’ve been moved to a different supplier.

Philippa Pickford, director of retail at Ofgem, said: “Green Network Energy and Simplicity Energy customers do not need to worry, as under our safety net we’ll make sure your energy supplies are secure and domestic customers’ credit balances are protected.

“Ofgem will now choose a new supplier for you and whilst we are doing this our advice is to wait until we appoint a new supplier and do not switch in the meantime. You can rely on your energy supply as normal. We will update you when we have chosen a new supplier, who will then get in touch about your new tariff.”

Ofgem advises that if you’re either a Green Network Energy or Simplicity Energy customer should take meter readings as soon as possible. Once your new supplier has been in touch, customers can ask to be put on their cheapest tariff, or shop around for a better deal from another supplier. You won’t be charged any exit fees for switching away from your new supplier.

If I decide to switch from my new supplier how long will it take?

Comparing available energy deals typically takes less than five minutes through our energy switching service. You can find all the information you need to complete your switch on your most recent bill. This includes the name of your energy supplier and tariff, your energy consumption, what you’ve paid and the current balance. This will either be a credit or debit balance.

Once you’ve chosen which deal you want to move to, switching energy tariffs should take no more than 21 days, and your new supplier should do all the work on your behalf. Your final bill from your old supplier should arrive within six weeks. It’s the same meter and you won’t need any new pipes, nor will you lose your energy supply – the only difference will be the cost and who you pay.

Over half of Rest Less users (51%) who have switched using our tool have cut energy costs by an average of £167 a year, and one in 10 have saved £340 a year.

Why are so many energy providers stopping trading?

Green Network Energy and Simplicity Energy are far from the first energy providers to cease trading. Last year saw several suppliers fail, including Tonik Energy, Effortless Energy, Gnergy and Yorkshire Energy.

Like so many other businesses, the pandemic has hit energy suppliers hard, particularly smaller providers.

Sarah Broomfield, energy expert at Uswitch.com said: “Challenger brands have faced a difficult year. They’ve been hit hard by the knock-on effects from the pandemic and many operate on thin profit margins.”

Ofgem has recently published final proposals to strengthen checks on energy suppliers, so smaller providers will have to demonstrate that they have the financial strength to take on high numbers of customers. Find out more here.

Has your energy supplier stopped trading and did you stick with the supplier that Ofgem moved you to, or switch to a different supplier? You can join the money conversation on the Rest Less Community forum, or leave a comment below.

Links with an * by them are affiliate links which help Rest Less stay free to use as they can result in a payment or benefit to us. You can read more on how we make money here.

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