Collective Energy Switching – which is backed by Mendip District Council – is when consumers get together to negotiate a group deal with gas and electricity suppliers, with a third party actively negotiating a better tariff on behalf of the group through an auction process.
The scheme, which is open to all Mendip residents, aims to help prevent people slipping into fuel poverty, allow vulnerable groups to participate in energy switching and help Mendip’s residents to get a better deal on their energy bills.
The way the process works is:
· Residents visit the Mendip District Council website – www.mendip.gov.uk –where they will find a link for the Big Community Switch website. There they can follow a simple online process to register their interest.
· Up to five households can be registered on one email address and residents without internet access will be supported through the registration process by the council.
· Mendip residents are then pooled with other local authority schemes (around 60 currently) and energy companies bid against each other in a reverse auction to offer the group of customers the best deal.
· A no-obligation offer is then sent to each resident who has registered in the scheme and they have a month to choose whether to accept it
· If residents choose to accept their offer they are then switched to the new supplier and supported to ensure a smooth and hassle-free transfer
Cllr Philip Ham, Portfolio Holder for Policy and Performance, said: “The cost of energy bills has risen by a massive 37% since 2010, so we are keen to do what we can to help local residents save money on their bills.
“The last auction that was carried out with Mendip residents was well supported, but we are keen that even more people take the opportunity to find out more about collective energy switching and how it might help them.
“I hope that people across Mendip will give serious consideration to taking part in this initiative and the benefits it could bring them.”
The first auction in Mendip took place in June this year and the second one is set for October 14th.
Residents who are keen to be part of the process can register online via www.mendip.gov.uk or contact Mendip District Council on 0300 303 8588 or visit any Council Access Point for more information.