Britons could be throwing away hundreds of pounds every year by not shopping around for the best deals, our research has found.
The YouGov survey revealed that more than one in four (26%) of 18 to 55-year-olds are unwilling to switch providers for their credit cards, banking, energy, broadband or telephone – no matter what the potential savings or what additional benefits they were offered.
When asked which services they’d be most likely to switch, energy (20%) and insurance (15%) came out on top – if the provider guaranteed to save them money. But fewer than 1 in 10 (9%) were willing to switch current accounts and only 6% would switch credit card providers, in spite of the fact that almost half of those surveyed have most of their debt on credit cards (44%).
Interestingly, those aged between 35 and 55 were almost twice as likely as 18 to 34-year-olds to switch (19% versus 10%) insurance providers, while the opposite is true for current accounts (7% versus 13%).
So, what’s stopping us?
While nearly half (49%) said they would be swayed by cheaper services and a similar number (43%) by cash incentives, it’s clear that shoppers really struggle to differentiate between service providers (50%). Nearly half (46%) also felt it’s too much effort to switch, or fear disruption during the switching process (41%).
Consumer champion Sarah Willingham believes it’s time for a rethink of our attitudes towards switching.
She says companies are literally falling over themselves to offer the best deals to their customers and they’re out there for the taking, but it does require action on our part. It’s a little effort for a BIG reward with nothing to lose and everything to gain.
She has three tips to get the best deals for savvy-savers.
1. If you don’t ask, you don’t get.
It’s important to regularly review your insurance, energy, broadband, mobile and credit providers to ensure you are getting the best financial deals. Make a list of all your current services and the rates that you are paying. Then, why not ring around and see if your providers can offer you a better deal.
2. If not, fear not.
Check out the best available deals online. Price comparison and matching services have come on in leaps and bounds in the last few years. Some tell you the best financial deals available and others can even match your credit information to the credit products that you are most likely to get – potentially saving you time and money in the long run.
3. Slow and steady wins the race.
Many applications may often require a credit check and so switching everything at the same time could negatively affect your credit score. In addition, taking the time to improve your credit score can also help you secure the best deals.
We’re here to help. To get information on your credit score and competitive, savvy-shopping deals simply click here.
Methodology: All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 2028 adults, aged 18 to 34 and 2047 adults aged 35 to 55 (Generation X). Fieldwork was undertaken between 17th and 28th December 2015. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of 18 to 34 GB adults and 35 to 55 GB adults.