I’m with Outfox the Market, how am I affected?
Around 50,000 existing Outfox the Market customers on the Zapp tariff will see prices rise by a typical £64/year from Thursday 13 December, while new customers signing up from today will pay the new, higher rates.
The increase will also affect the supplier’s Whamm tariff, which is essentially the same deal but for higher electricity users (8,000 kWh/year plus).
Outfox the Market doesn’t have exit fees on these tariffs though, so you can leave penalty-free at any time.
Despite the increases, the Zapp tariff is still among the top five cheapest deals, based on typical use – use our Cheap Energy Club to check how it stacks up for you.
How are direct debit payments changing?
Typically, when suppliers set monthly direct debits, they take your estimated annual usage, work out how much you’ll pay on your tariff over the year, and divide this by 12 to get your monthly payment.
So essentially you overpay in summer, when your usage is low, building up a credit surplus for when you start to use more energy in the cold winter months.
But from next month, Outfox the Market will instead charge 70% of your annual cost in six payments between October and March, and 30% between April and September.
For example, a typical user paying an average £987/year on the supplier’s new rates would see the following change to their payments:
- Current monthly payment. £82.25 per month. This is calculated by dividing £987 by 12.
- New winter payment. £115.15 per month from October to March.
- New summer payment. £49.35 per month from April to September.
As the changes are coming in for most next month, Outfox the Market will work out your payments over the next 12 months – from December 2018 to December 2019 – so you’ll pay the higher rate until March, the lower rate between April and September, and then the higher rate from October.
Outfox the Market says that if customers believe their new direct debit amount is too high, they can contact it, and it will use a recent meter reading plus your estimated annual consumption to review it.
It also said if a customer has enough credit to cover expected winter bills, they can get a refund and direct debit reduction.
We’ve asked Outfox the Market for a full comment and will update this story if we hear back.