Energy Mis-selling

One day in February I answered the door to someone who claimed that I could get cheaper gas and electricity if I switched from E.ON to Scottish Power. Normally I tell these people that I am not interested, but on this occasion I ended up inviting him in for a lengthy discussion, resulting in me signing an application to switch. One thing he said was that E.ON, having inherited the position of former monopoly electricity supplier in my area from Eastern Electricity, was required by the regulator to maintain higher electricity prices than its competitors. After he left I did some research and found that this was not the case. It is true that the tariffs offered by suppliers depend on where you live, but the price controls he was clearly referring to were scrapped in 2002. The tariffs he quoted me were significantly lower than the E.ON ones, and they were from what looked like a genuine Scottish Power leaflet. However, when I phoned Scottish Power they quoted tariffs that were very similar to the E.ON ones. When I asked them to explain the discrepancy all they could suggest is that the salesman must have shown me an out of date leaflet. I told them that I felt I had been the victim of mis-selling and exercised my right to cancel the contract. The best source of information I found was the ofgem Energy Supply Probe – Initial Findings Report, published in October 2008.

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