Friday, 30 October 2015

Slashes to Tax Relief for Community Energy Schemes

Last week the Government announced plans to slash the tax reliefs available to community energy projects by at least 30%. The plans to cut tax reliefs for community energy schemes to build new renewable power capacity such as solar and wind. Green campaigners have warned of the adverse affects this will have on the UK's renewable sector.

These changes were announced during the third reading of the finance bill last week and came about completely unexpectedly. No longer will investors in community energy projects be able to benefit from Enterprise Investment Schemes, or the Social Investment Tax Relief as well as other schemes. This in turn makes the investments less attractive due to the sudden decrease in monetary benefit.

Sunday, 25 October 2015

Catering Sector Should Save Energy & Shop Around

Restaurants urged to take control of their energy spend

Britain's catering sector should take control of energy costs by cutting waste and shopping around for better deals to recude it's £1.3 billion annual spend on energy, according to Energy Advice Line.

A survey of 150 restaurant owners, managers and chefs carried out by Big Six energy supplier E.ON showed energy worries came second only to staff issues, yet three-quarters admitted they didn't know how to reduce their energy consumption.

Sunday, 18 October 2015

Energy Provider Fined Over Blocking Switches

Energy provider fined £560,000 for blocking customer switches

A pre-payment energy provider has been given a £560,000 penalty from regulator Ofgem after it wrongly prevented it's customers from switching to other suppliers. Utilita were established in 2003 and have been suppling customers with pre-payed gas and electricity since.

Ofgem found that the company had blocked as many as 4,000 of it's customers from switching supplier when they requested. Included in the fine, £110,000 worth of refunds will be issued to the customers affected, reimbursing those who lost out financially as a direct result of not being given permission to switch their supplier.

Saturday, 10 October 2015

Energy Advice Line Renews Call for an End to Cold Calling

The Energy Advice Line has renewed demands for a ban on cold calling after a firm was handed a record fine for making people's lives 'a misery' with nuisance calls.

Energy Advice Line renews call for an end to cold calling

The Information Commissioner fined the company £200,000 after making more than 6 million automated calls in a solar panel marketing campaign.

Julian Morgan, managing director of the price comparison, switching and advice service for householders and business energy users, said the case was further proof that unsolicited sales calls were not welcome by consumers and should be banned.

The Energy Advice Line has spearheaded a campaign for the energy regulator Ofgem to ban the practice of cold calling because it placed undue pressure on consumers to agree to energy deals that were not necessarily the cheapest available.

Monday, 5 October 2015

Switch Supplier Before The Big Switch On

The Big Switch On is nearly upon us

Homeowners and business energy users should consider switching energy suppliers before the predicted record winter freeze hits, according to the Energy Advice Line.

Julian Morgan, managing director of the price comparison, switching and advice service for energy users said it was just weeks before the 'Big Switch On' on October 31, when consumers traditionally turned on the heating on a daily basis.

"With forecasters predicting an Arctic winter freeze, now is the time for consumers to investigate switching so that they are not paying over the odds once the bitter cold sets in." Mr Morgan said.

"It's possible to save as much as hundreds of pounds by switching supplier in advance of the end of October, when traditionally we turn out heating on every day.

"With forecasters predicting record lows, it really is worth investing the time and the effort in taking control of your energy supplies and shopping around for the best deals to take you through the winter."

Mr Morgan said that Energy Advice Line experts had the knowledge to help business energy users and households decide on the most appropriate tariff for their needs, with a number of excellent deals available.

Some of the cheapest domestic deals on the market were variable tariffs, which meant that if energy prices rose, so would your energy bills. Some fixed deals, on the other hand, were slightly more expensive but offered the security of knowing prices would remain the same for the duration of the contract.

Many households on fixed tariffs will see their energy bills leap significantly when their dual-fuel gas and electricity rates expire at the end of the month.

"There are lots of tariffs out there and it helps to have an expert explain the difference between them and help decide the best deal for your needs," Mr Morgan said.

"Large nunbers of fixed tariffs expire at the end of this month, so it's crucial that you stay in control of your energy bills now.

"With potential savings of hundreds of pounds, it makes financial sense to spend just a few moments comparing tariffs to see what you can save. And the easiest way to do this is to use our online service or give us a call.

"It's important to remember that this service is free and our prices are completely transparent."

The Energy Advice Line is a consumer champion and an independent price comparison and switching service for householders and small and medium sized businesses. The service enables consumers to quickly and simply compare electricity and gas prices, and to switch to the best available deal on the market.

The service also offers free advice and a contract management service, including alerts to remind business consumer users when their fixed-term energy contracts are about to end.

For further information, visit