‘The Big Six’ energy suppliers take up close to 95% of the energy market in the UK.
And new research by Powershop, new to the UK market with a mission to make energy simpler, could show us why – over half of Brits have not shopped for a new energy supplier in at least two years.
Powershop surveyed over 2,000 Brits on their attitudes towards energy, bringing to light the many conceptions and misconceptions around the energy landscape.
They created an illustrated guide to illuminate their findings, revealing an alarming number feel in the dark about energy and energy suppliers.
The study showed many have stayed with the same energy supplier for at least two years. But when a small flat’s average utility bill per month is £61, a medium’s £89 and a large £125, why not shop around?
It is suggested that location and age play a significant part: Londoners are the most likely to be deal-savvy, while Brits age 61+ are the least likely to shop around.
The survey also shows that the UK is baffled by the language being used by energy suppliers, which evidently makes it harder to know what we’re signing up to, what we’ll get from it, and what we will be billed.
In fact, Brits found understanding their energy bill more difficult than negotiating a new phone or TV contract – or even cooking their first Christmas dinner.
Only 2% of Brits know how to read an electricity dial meter correctly, while over 20% don’t know what a dual fuel tariff is.
Energy bills are taking an emotional toll
It has also been revealed the extent of stress that energy bills are causing to Brits.
Over half feel anxious every time they open their energy bill, with 23% of men finding it more stressful than going to a job interview.
Young adults are affected worse, with over four in five 25 to 35-year-olds finding this an extremely stressful experience, compared to less than one in three of those aged 61+.
A quarter of respondents find opening energy bills more stressful than meeting a partner’s parent or asking someone out.
Brits couldn’t survive electricity-free
In this day and age, it’s no surprise that we’ve come to be dependent on electricity, which the survey proves to be true.
In fact, a huge four in five said they couldn’t go electricity-free for more than a week because they’d get bored.
Looking to the future, almost a quarter of people in the UK aged 61 and over said they wouldn’t ever go electricity-free, compared to a notably lower 11% of 25 to 35-year-olds.
Clearly, there’s strong need for energy suppliers – but preferably ones that offer Brits sense over stress when it comes to the energy landscape.