Many of the Competition and Markets Authority’s “remedies” for the energy market are taking effect over the next few weeks, and with their implementation, we are expecting some significant changes in favour of energy customers.
An important part of the CMA’s review of the energy market centred around the ever expanding and evolving Price Comparison Website (PCWs) and Third Party Intermediaries (TPIs) market, and how they can best serve customers and increase market competition.
What is the current situation?
TPIs and PCWs keep suppliers on their toes to deliver their best price. Suppliers know this route to market is strong but also full of competitive pricing. This means, if they want to win your business, they must be as keen as possible on their pricing.
One of the challenges PCWs and TPIs have faced though is lack of access to information about your supply, information all suppliers have access to but that you may not have to hand when you need to get a price or seek assistance. Contracts were agreed based on inaccurate assumptions about customers’ energy consumption which suppliers were then not able to fulfil.
Such a scenario costs the consumer time and money, and potentially leaves them with less options as they run out of time and the market moves on.
What is going to change?
The CMA’s remedy will allow PCWs and TPIs access to the electricity & gas databases and enable them to confirm aspects of your supply. This will help in a more successful switching process and help build confidence in the market.
There remains a barrier of cost for a lot of PCWs and TPIs but we are hopeful that will be addressed in due course.
As with all aspects of the CMA this is a positive change, one that will help the consumer make better informed decisions, open up more options and lead to a cleaner switching experience.
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