SWITCHING PROVIDERS

It’s time to renew your plan

What to do when the discount on your energy plan is expiring.

JUNE 17, 2019
CARL PRINS
Time to renew

Have you recently received an email from your energy provider letting your know that your discount will end soon? We’ve pulled together a guide to explain what to do when it is time to renew your energy plan.

Why do energy plans expire?

Energy retailers offer discounts or incentives on their energy price plans to win new customers. Sometimes they offer these discounts or incentives to keep you if it looks like you’re about to switch to a new provider.

Benefit periods

The ‘catch’ with special energy plans offered is that the benefit only last for a period of time, usually 12 months. This is called a “benefit period”.

Benefit periods are not to be confused with contract terms. In most cases ‘ongoing’ contract terms are set up, which means you can change provider whenever you like.

What are my options on expiry?

There are three things you could do when your benefit period is going to expire:

  1. Do nothing. If you do this, the discounts you have been receiving will end. This is not a great option as you end up paying more than you need to for your energy.
  2. Renew your plan with your current provider. This entails going to their website or calling them and ‘renewing’ to one of their current market offers.
  3. Switch to a new energy provider. If you compare all the offers available, the best value may be to change to a new provider. If you do this, you need to be aware of when your meter is going to be read next. We’ll explain more about this below.

When does my switch kick in?

If you change to a new provider, there is a delay between when you ‘switch’ and when you actually start getting the new pricing from your new provider.

Here are the steps:

  1. Your old retailer needs a final meter read to work out how much to bill you before closing your account. So, once your account has been transferred and your meter has been read, they will send you a “final bill”.
  2. From the day your meter has been read, you are being charged the new rates.

What can go wrong?

It’s important to remember that nothing should physically change with the delivery of electricity or gas to your home. This is merely a question of the amount you pay for energy.

What can sometimes happen is that people switch to a new retailer and then find themselves on an expensive plan with their old retailer until there meter is read (and the new rates kick in).

If you are in this circumstance, we recommend first getting on a better price from your current retailer and then switching to a new one. It is a small change, but could save you heaps!

What if my benefit period has already expired?

We strongly suggest getting on the best plan from your current retailer as soon as possible. Once you have updated it, have a look around for a better plan from any retailer.

How does Handled help?

With Handled you can quickly see what plans are available from your current provider as well as the rest of the market. You can quickly switch to a better product or provider as Handled does all the admin for you. Too easy!

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