Bulk-buy customers set for return on energy bills

12:31pm Tuesday 3rd December 2013

By Alex Bysouth

RESIDENTS who bulk-buy their energy could be set to pocket more than £100 this winter through the local authority’s Collective Energy Scheme.

Cheshire West and Chester residents who signed up for the latest round of the Ready to Switch scheme could save on average £102 following an auction between energy companies.

The Council joined forces with 11 other local authorities to create the scheme where residents combine purchasing power and bulk-buy their energy as a group to negotiate cheaper energy bills.

Councillor Herbert Manley, executive member for growth and innovation, said: “I am delighted that the majority of people who have signed up for the latest round of Ready to Switch are now set to make big savings on their energy bills.

“This comes at a time when energy prices, and the strain on household budgets, are on the increase, and so will be a welcome relief for many as the colder months draw in.”

The 1,295 Cheshire West households signed up to the scheme should receive an offer letter or email before Friday, December 13.

The letter advises them on savings against their current deal, residents then have until January 13 to decide whether to switch.

It is believed 63% of Cheshire West residents registered could save on energy bills if they choose to switch.

The highest average saving was for dual fuel monthly direct debit paper billing customers, who stand to save on average £159-per-year.

The Ready to Switch scheme was combined with a number of other similar initiatives around the UK to create a collective of more than 54,000 households, driven by local authorities.

This is the sixth such collective auction to be held in the UK since the pilot with South Lakeland District Council a year ago.

The largest auction, in April 2013, saw 160,000 households register with special tariffs created for a number of the auction categories.

The collective switching schemes are attracting are mix of ‘Big Six’ and smaller independent suppliers.

Three auction winners will supply a range of contracts; Scottish Power, Green Star Energy and British Gas.

Anyone who has not received their offer by Friday, December 13 should visit cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk/readytoswitch

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