Solihull Council (SMBC) has managed five successful Collective Energy Switching Schemes called Solihull Switch ‘n’ Save with the aim of helping residents find a better/cheaper deal on home gas and electricity bills. This scheme will mean residents won’t need to negotiate the often confusing world of energy suppliers and tariffs.
SMBC ran the scheme in October 2015, May 2016, October 2016, May 2017 and October 2017 the results were:
|Date||Registrations||Average Savings||Number of Switchers||% of switchers||Total Bill Savings|
|Oct 2015||749||£ 295.87||272||36%||£ 80,477.51|
|May 2016||1,120||£ 358.78||442||39%||£158,579.64|
|Oct 2016||814||£ 130.63||156||19%||£20,378.40|
|May 2017||2,429||£ 284.18||583||24%||£165,107.10|
Residents needed to have a recent energy bill to hand and visit www.solihull.gov.uk/switching to register. They could also go to a local council walk-in centre if help to register was needed.
This type of scheme is known as Collective Switching, which uses the collective bargaining power of groups of people to get better prices for electricity and gas from energy suppliers.
The Council work with iChoosr, a company that specialises in working with utility companies and managing collective energy switching to negotiate a better tariff on behalf of the group of people who register for the scheme.
Although it’s designed to save money for residents, the scheme is open to everyone and you didn’t need to live within the borough to take part.
The collective switching process involves a reverse auction being held where energy suppliers bid for the opportunity to offer cheaper deals. At no point are any personal details released to utility companies.
Residents who register receive an email or letter containing details of the new energy offer and quantifying the estimated annual savings available. Residents then decide whether to Switch and Save. There were no obligations and it’s completely free.
SMBC have helped 1,681 people get a better energy deal with potential collective total savings of over £480,000 that can be used to boost the local economy.