Andrew is the newest member of the team and is already making his mark with his insightful & cutting edge reporting on the latest news in the personal finance arena.
First:Utility have started sending out letters to customers on its iSave V9 (now V9.2) tariff migrating them on to a new 9.2% more expensive Dual Fuel Discount legacy tariff from 1st April 2013. This will take the average (as defined by Ofgem rather than reality) customer bill from £1125 to £1255 per year.
The new iSave Everyday DFD tariff is not available to new customers and is only available to existing customers migrating from existing Dual Fuel Discount tariffs.
Working in a similar to the legacy DFD accounts it replaces, First Utility apply a dual fuel discount of £180 (£90 each fuel) to your account after 12 consecutive monthly direct debit payments have been made.
The iSave Everyday DFD tariff also comes with a price guarantee that it will be cheaper than the cheapest of the standard tariffs offered by the Big Six (based on the usual 3,300KWh electricity and 16,500KWh gas).
While it's nice to have a guarantee it's not a particularly strong one as Big Six Standard Tariffs are not the cheapest around. The fact that the calculation is done on standard usage figures is another issue as it doesn't take much of a variation of usage profile to make big changes to the actual bill.
So, time to move?
It's certainly worth running a comparison but do check when your Dual Fuel Discount is due for payment first. If you leave First Utility you will lose any discount earned but not yet paid. If that is a significant amount you may be better off switching to the variable rate iSave v14 and move after your DFD is paid or iSave Fixed Price V7 September 2014 if you want to fix your energy costs.