Welcome to our comprehensive NAQs (never-asked-questions), where we run through the LAMB service. If you can’t find an answer to your question below please add it to the comments section..
It’s important to us that our sign-up process be as straightforward as possible, which is why we’ve compiled this step-by-step guide to help you along the way.
This section is for us to find out about your energy details, so that we can use this information to always get you a deal that suits your preferences and needs.
Do I have an economy 7 meter?
With economy 7 meters you get charged a different rate depending on the time, so energy usage is cheaper at night and slightly more in the day. They became popular in the 1980s to encourage people to prioritise using appliances at night. They are ONLY used for electricity.
There are three easy ways to check on your bill to see if you have an economy 7 meter:
1) The top left two digits would be a number 02 if you had an economy 7 meter.
2) In the electricity breakdown in your bill, you would have two sets of unit rates and sets of consumptions (for day and night).
3) Thirdly, your electricity would have two sets of readings like this:
Why do you need my supplier?
We need to know who you’re with because when you’re ready for a switch, your new supplier will contact the old one in order to get your meter transferred.
This is also important as they can check whether you are in credit to your current provider. If you haven’t paid enough to cover the energy you’ve used you’ll need to pay your old supplier what you owe them.
Equally, if you’ve paid for more energy than you’ve actually used, your old supplier needs to give you a refund.
How to check who your supplier is when you’ve moved house
If you’ve recently moved house the easiest way to find out is to ask the previous owner or landlord if you’re renting. The letting or estate agent could also have the details.
Often the previous owner or tenant will have already let the energy company that they’re moving. If so, the current supplier will send a letter addressed to The Occupier with all the information you need to know.
Why it’s helpful for us to know your tariff but not essential
Although most of us haven’t a clue what our tariff name is and it’s not essential info, it is helpful for us to know as it means we can work out when your contract is ending – so we’ll know the best time to switch you!
Knowing your tariff will also mean your projected savings each year are more accurate as the tariff dictates the unit rate and standing charge of the energy you use.
What is the unit rate?
The unit rate is the price (in pence) of your gas or electricity, per kWH (what energy is measured in). The cost per unit differs for gas and electricity, with electricity costing considerably more. Unit rates vary from supplier to supplier and plan to plan. You can find your unit rate on your latest energy bill.
What is the standing charge?
These are fixed amounts charged by your supplier for being connected to the gas and electricity network which don’t relate to how much energy you use. Most energy suppliers charge these fees at a daily rate. Standing charges can vary based on which tariff you are on, the region you live in and how you choose to pay your bills. You can find your standing charge on your latest energy bill.
How to check your tariff
The tariff name will be on your bill in most cases or you can ask your supplier for the name of your tariff.
How do you pay for your bill?
Monthly direct debit
Most people go for this option as energy suppliers offer a discount to customers who pay this way. As energy use fluctuates so much, it would be very rare for your monthly payment amount to actually cover your usage exactly, so each month you are likely to overpay or under pay by an amount.
Over the course of 12 months the payments usually balance out – people tend to use more electricity and gas in the winter so may fall into debt in these months before paying it off over the summer.
Quarterly Direct Debit
These payments are taken quarterly to cover three months worth of energy use.
Payment on receipt of bill
As the name suggests, with payment on receipt of bill once your bill arrives every quarter you then pay for the energy you’ve used in the previous three months. This payment can be made via a variety of different methods such as over the phone, in banks by cash or cheque.
With a prepayment meter you pay for your energy usage upfront using a top-up key or tokens. Prepayment meters are typically the most expensive way to pay for your gas and electricity usage.
Sadly we don’t provide plans for prepayment meters at the moment but are very keen to do so in the future.
How much energy do you use?
This is a tricky one if you don’t have your meter reading or a bill to hand. If you’re still unsure which category you fall into, here’s a more in-depth rundown of energy user profiles:
Low energy users
A ‘low energy user’ typically lives in a one or two bedroom flat or house. There’s normally with no more than two people living there. They’ll use appliances sparingly, for example the washing machine just once a week. Ofgem sets the values for a “low” user.
Medium energy users
A ‘medium energy user’ will typically have a 3 bedroom house, with 3 to 4 people living there. During the day the occupants will be out of the house. They will use electrical appliances like the TV in the evening and the heating and washing machine regularly.
High Energy Users
High users typically have 4+ bedroom houses with a large family or a big shared house. Occupants could be home on evenings and weekends or sometimes all day. They use appliances everyday or very regularly as well as multiple electrical appliances.
Why is it helpful to know your exact usage?
This is not essential but if you do have a bill to hand then great! Your payments will adjust according to your usage. This can go up or down so the more accurate we can make this the better so that we can find a tariff that fits your needs. Entering your kWHs for electricity and gas is the way to do this, meaning you won’t get any surprises in what you’re paying.
Why do we need to know some personal details?
The info you provide here will be used to create your account. We ask for your email and number as a means of contacting you to keep you informed and these will also be passed on to suppliers when you switch.
Your employment, residential status and address are required by some suppliers who choose to carry out a credit check.
In this section you need to pop in your postcode and scroll down to the correct address. If this has been your address for more than 3 years then click YES and then ADD ADDRESS which will confirm those details.
If you’ve moved house within the last 3 years you’ll need to add in the time you’ve been at your current address and fill in the boxes beneath with all your relevant previous addresses.
Remember to always click ADD ADDRESS to lock in the info, otherwise you won’t be able to go through to the next page.
When you switch energy, some but not all suppliers request a credit check.
Don’t worry at all this won’t affect your switch, it simply means that some suppliers might ask you for a guarantee like joining a payment plan or having a guarantor.
Who is eligible for a Warm Home Discount?
The ‘Core Group’ – Automatic Recipients
You will qualify as part of the Core Group if you, or your partner living with you, are either:
- Receiving only the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit (no Savings Credit – no age restriction)
- Aged 65 or over and receiving both the Guarantee and Savings element of Pension Credit
- If either of these apply, the DWP should write to you and let you know. They will also notify us so we can pay your rebate and you do not need to contact us about this.
The ‘Non-Core Group’
Obligated suppliers must provide rebates to a wider group of customers who are in or at risk of fuel poverty. You have to apply directly with the supplier for this to see if you qualify.
Those eligible get £140 off their electricity bill under the Warm Home Discount Scheme.The money isn’t paid directly to the person but is a one-off discount on your electricity bill, between October and March.
Suppliers who participate:
Atlantic, Bristol Energy, British Gas, Economy Energy, EDF Energy, E.ON, Extra Energy, First Utility, Fischer Energy, Flow Energy, npower, OVO Energy, Our Power, Scottish Hydro, ScottishPower, Southern Electric, Spark Energy, SSE, SWALEC, The Co-operative Energy, Utilita, Utility Warehouse.
Why do you need my bank details?
We never ever take any money from your account. We take down your details so that we can set up your switches when your current contract ends.
We’ll always ensure you’re on a cheaper tariff and not overpaying for your energy. Our friendly team is always on hand and you’ll always be kept in the know about switches.
You are always always in control and can of course opt out at any point.
How do we work out the average saving for LAMB customers?
We take the mean average of all current LAMB customers and work out the saving!
What happens now?
Once you’re all signed up, you just sit back, relax and LAMB will sort out the rest… When you’re entering the last 49 days of your current energy contract, this is when we will get to work scoping out the cheapest deal for you, without you lifting a finger.
We always keep you in the know, updating you on who you’re switching to and how much you’ll save.
If you have any more questions, leave us a comment [add link to comment or email] or you can ring us on 02034630820.