With a pre-payment meter you pay for your gas and electricity before use. There is also a standing charge applied to the meter each day regardless of fuel use. You will have to go to certain shops to top it up – look out for the PayPoint sign to find participating shops or the PayPoint postcode finder on the PayPoint website.
Things to remember:
- You need to keep your pre-payment meter topped up with credit or your gas and electricity supply can be cut off.
- This means you have to keep it topped up to cover standing charges too.
- There are certain discounts available which you can’t receive on a prepayment meter.
- Pre-payment meters typically offer more expensive tariffs, which could mean you’ll pay more for your energy than those on a credit meter.
- Dont forget to check if you are eligible with any help with your bills.
Switching energy supplier when you are in debt
- If you’ve been in debt to your supplier for less than 28 days you can still switch. Any owed amounts will be added to your final bill from your old supplier.
- If you’ve been in debt to your supplier for over 28 days, you’ll need to repay the debt first.
- When it’s your supplier’s fault that you’re in debt, they can’t stop you from switching.
If you are wanting to switch and on a prepayment meter
As long as you owe less than £500 for gas and £500 for electricity, you can switch to a new supplier if you are paying off an energy debt through a prepayment meter.
You are entitled to do so through the ‘Debt Assignment Protocol’. This would mean your new supplier takes on the debt and you repay them instead, based on the new terms of your agreement with them.