Looking for information on fixed energy deals? Find out everything there is to know about fixed-price energy charges and get yourself a better deal.
What is a fixed tariff?
A “fixed tariff” means the price you pay per unit of energy will remain the same throughout the length of your contract, also known as a “fixed-rate energy plan”. If you use more energy you will still pay more but the amount you pay per unit you use will stay the same.
How do fixed energy tariffs work?
Fixed energy tariffs work by locking in a fixed rate for energy over the course of a contract. If you’re on a fixed energy deal, you’ll be protected from sudden price hikes if wholesale energy prices increase.
I’m on a fixed energy tariff, why has my monthly bill gone up?
There can be some confusion regarding fixed energy deals, with some people thinking that their bills will remain the same during the length of the contract. It’s in fact the unit rate in kilowatt-hours (kWh) that stays the same. Your energy bill still depends on how many units of energy you use. If your usage increases your supplier may increase your monthly payments accordingly.
How can I make sure my monthly energy price stays the same?
The best thing to do if you’re on a fixed tariff is speak to your supplier and make sure your monthly payments are set at a sensible level to cover your estimated annual usage.
It also worth keeping an eye on how much you’re using each month and making adjustments to save energy where possible. Remember, if you’re on a fixed rate contract, lowering your energy usage ultimately leads to lower bills.
Some suppliers will also offer unlimited energy tariffs where you can pay a fixed price no matter how much you use. However, these tend to be very expensive and are not common practice in the UK.
Is a fixed energy tariff a good idea?
Yes. In general, the cheapest deals on the market offer fixed rates for 12 months. By signing up to a fixed rate deal you are protected against rises in wholesale energy prices.
What are the downsides of a fixed energy tariff?
The main downside to fixed energy deals is that you might miss out on savings if wholesale energy prices decrease. To find out more about wholesale prices and what else drives fuel prices, have a look at our UK energy market guide.
You also need to keep an eye on your tariff end date. Fixed prices are only fixed for the duration of contract you sign up for, so prices may increase if you don’t sign up for a new deal before your original contract ends.
Which suppliers offer fixed energy tariffs?
Nearly all UK suppliers offer a fixed rate deal, with only a couple of exceptions. Bulb are the first large supplier to use a variable tariff for everyone instead of offering fixed rate deals.
How long do fixed energy tariffs last?
Most fixed rate tariffs will be fixed for 12 months, however many suppliers also offer deals that are fixed for 2 or 3 years. If you’re considering signing up for a longer term fixed tariff read our guide on 2-year fixed energy deals.
Why do I need to know when my fixed tariff ends?
It important to be aware of your tariff end date so that you don’t get rolled on to a more expensive deal when the tariff ends.
Many suppliers use competitively priced fixed rate deals to attract new customers. When the initial contract ends they then switch you to a standard variable tariff which can be much more expensive per unit you use. This is known as the “loyalty penalty”. If you know your tariff end date you can renew or switch to a new, cheap deal before this happens.
What should I do when my fixed energy tariff ends?
If you’re on a fixed tariff it’s important to sign up for a new deal every year, or you may be automatically rolled onto a higher rate.
Alternatively, if you sign up for an automatic switching service like Switchcraft we’ll automatically find a new fixed deal when your current one is coming to an end.
How to get cheap fixed energy deals
You can access the best-fixed energy deals by keeping an eye on the energy market, and checking energy comparison sites regularly. If you choose to switch to a different supplier, you don’t need to inform your provider as long as it’s within the 49-day window before your current deal ends. Be wary of switching too often though as you may be charged exit fees.
Switch your energy supplier
We believe that everyone deserves a fairer deal on energy. Switchcraft is a free auto switching service that continually scours the market for better energy deals. Sign up in 3 minutes, and after that, we’ll automatically switch you to a better deal every year.