December 11, 2018

Average UK householder pays £37,331 too much for bills in their lifetime

UK householders will pay an average of £37,331 too much for utilities and insurance in their lifetime. That’s according to some research we carried out with the launch our Futility Bill calculator, designed to help people understand how much they unwittingly overpay to energy and insurance companies.

We asked one thousand bill payers how often they switch suppliers for their energy, broadband, home insurance and motor insurance. Using this information, we calculated that, in their lifetime, the average person hands over tens of thousands in excess payments, with some customers heading towards six figures.

These over-payments – which Flipper has dubbed the Futility Bill – comprise cash that householders could have saved in the past by switching to cheaper deals, and a projection for what they will waste in the future if they don’t change their switching behaviour.

Example of our Futility Bill Calculator

Flipper has launched a Futility Bill calculator which allows people to workout how much they have already overpaid and what they will continue to overpay unless they switch more frequently.

What is the UK's average bill amount?

One of the first people to use the calculator is Alan Astrums, 60, a property consultant from Pollington, East Yorkshire. His futility bill is £43,519.

“I was astounded to see the amount that I’d overspent on my bills – it’s many times more than I expected,” said Alan. “However, I did find it reassuring that, even at 60, I can recoup nearly half of my historical loss if I join Flipper. With winter coming up, there’s no time to waste.”

Nisha Thiara, 22, an operations assistant from Stockwell, South London, also used the calculator.

“I can’t believe at this age I’ve already lost over £1,000. It’s really eye opening for a young person like me who’s trying to save for the future to see how much money is lost through not switching.”

The launch of the Futility Bill calculator comes amid concerns about the energy price cap which comes into effect on 1 January. The cap of £1,137 a year for a typical customer on a default tariff is still hundreds of pounds a year more expensive than the best deals on offer and Ofgem has admitted that prices are likely to rise just three months after the cap comes into effect.

Meanwhile, two broadband companies were fined over £13 million this month when it was discovered they had over-billed almost half a million customers.

Mark Gutteridge, Managing Director of Flipper gave his thoughts:

“We know that many people find comparing deals and switching providers confusing,or a hassle – or more likely both,”
“This is especially true for energy where we have gone from a handful of suppliers ten years ago to having more than seventy providers offering hundreds of tariffs today.”
“It’s hard work to keep track of the cheapest deals and that’s why we created Flipper,which finds and flips you to the cheapest energy deals automatically throughout the year, meaning customers never overpay for their energy,”
“Comparison sites were a great idea when they first launched over 15 years ago, but technology has moved on massively since then and the sites haven’t. You still spend hours entering loads of details, then need to work out which is the best deal from along confusing list, then have complete the switch yourself. That isn’t easy or simple, which is why so many people just don’t bother, or only switch every few years.”

Flipper, the UK’s first energy auto-switching service finds and flips our members to the cheapest energy deals without you having to go through the hassle of comparing numerous suppliers or managing the switching yourself.

Unlike price comparison sites and other automatic switching services, Flipper does not make money from the big energy companies. Instead members pay an annual fee when they are flipped for the first time and this means they can be flipped to the widest range of deals available, whenever there is money to be saved.

Being completely independent Flipper can focus entirely on the best interests of its members – making sure they don’t end up with a futility bill.

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