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    Time to switch to a green energy supplier? We look at the companies offering tariffs that don't burn fossil fuels to keep your home running

    Every year, millions of people ditch and switch energy supplier, either because they've found a cheaper deal or they have suffered a customer service nightmare.Last week, British Gas and EDF both revealed price increases for those on a standard variable tariffs, which will hit millions of households.This may prompt another wave of switchers who want to vote with their feet. In recent times, a push towards being conscious about our impact on the environment has led some to switch to a green tariff. Going green: Many households are becoming more environmentally conscious - and are turning to green energy tariffsThese green ...

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    The best and worst telecoms companies revealed: TalkTalk has the most broadband and landline complaints while Sky has the least

    TalkTalk received the most customer complaints for broadband and landline services between October and December last year, according to the latest complaints data from the regulator.There were 31 complaints per 100,000 customers received by Ofcom from broadband customers and 23 per 100,000 received from landline customers.The main reason for complaints from TalkTalk customers was faults with the service followed by issues with its complaints handling process and then problems with its billing, prices and charges. TalkTalk has the most broadband complaints for the second quarter running at the end of 2017For broadband services, this is the second quarter running that ...

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  • Bills

    Electricity bills could rise £200 by 2025 thanks to increasing green subsidies and wholesale energy costs

    Household electricity bills could rise by a third, or by just under £200, by 2025 due to the increasing cost of green subsidies and wholesale prices, a new report has predicted.Green policy costs will account for more than a quarter of electricity bills and wholesale costs will increase by 30 per cent during this time.The data predicts electricity bills will reach an average of £807 over the next eight years because Ofgem will be forced to repeatedly increase its price cap, which is designed to protect consumers from bill hikes. Rising costs: Green policy costs will make up more than ...

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    Haven't bothered with a smart meter yet? Hold off… my energy firm is now offering a bribe to get one and the rewards may improve, says LEE BOYCE

    Every two months, I receive a text message to my mobile phone from the sender 'SmartMeter'. It always says the same thing:'Just a friendly reminder from First Utility to call our partner Siemens to arrange your smart meter installation.'I also frequently receive letters from it along the same lines and periodically e-mails. A recent one read: 'Get your gas and electricity bills under control and upgrade to a smart meter today.'Book an appointment and become part of the nationwide smart meter movement that shows you your exact usage in pounds and pence.' Smart meter: It now seems energy firms are ...

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  • Bills

    Six tools to help make sure you never get ripped off, from people-powered discounts to automatic bill switching

    Imagine that smug feeling you get when you know you are paying less than anyone else; now imagine that feeling without having to do any of the hard work to get it.Most of us don’t have the time to spend hours researching online, switching deals or haggling for a better price.But a handful of companies now claim to skip all that hard work for you, landing you straight at the good part – the cheaper prices.Here are five top tools that have caught our eye, promising everything from automatic energy switching when a better deal comes up to getting retailers ...

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  • Bills

    These little-known loopholes like claiming workplace expenses will cut your tax bill (and they're all legal)

    We paid around £500billion in personal taxes last year.While super-rich celebrities and footballers can afford to pay top accountants to find tax efficient ways of saving them money on their income, the rest of us must find simpler ways to cut our tax burdens. We’ve rounded up a few you could try.PUT SAVINGS IN YOUR SPOUSE’S NAMECouples can make better use of tax allowances by sharing or switching savings. Making it work: Couples can make better use of tax allowances by sharing or switching savingsWe each have a tax-free personal income tax allowance of £11,500 (rising to £11,850 from April 6).  The ...

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    Earn money every time you shop: How cashback from websites and credit cards can put hundreds of pounds back into your pocket

    You are missing out on free money if you shop online and don’t use cashback websites. These reward you with a percentage of what you spend in cash.So if you spend £100 on clothes and the cashback rate is 5 per cent, you get £5 in your pocket. Over the course of the year these little payments all add up.And if you were planning to make those purchases anyway, then you really are getting something for nothing. Money in the bank: All you need to do is make a few simple changes to the way that you spend your money ...

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    The payback: At last, mobile phone users charged a small fortune for junk texts are to get refunds

    Nearly 25,000 people who were charged to receive junk text messages from a company flouting the regulator’s rules are to get refunds worth hundreds of thousands of pounds.Pro Money Holdings Limited – which operated a service called Comphouse Competitions – has been banned from the market for at least five years and fined £50,000 by the Phone-paid Services Authority, which governs premium-rate services charged to phone bills.The announcement comes after months of work by The Mail on Sunday to highlight the fact that consumers are being charged large sums to receive text messages they never wanted or asked for. Ripped-off: Paula ...

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  • Bills

    Eon leaves customers out in the cold as it cuts dual fuel and paperless billing discounts - while those paying by cash or cheque face higher costs

    Eon has axed discounts for dual fuel bills and paperless billing offered alongside certain tariffs, it announced today in the midst of one of the biggest cold snaps in recent times.During a week which has seen temperatures plummet, the energy giant has also increased the cost of of paying a bill by cash or cheque.A spokeswoman for Eon told This is Money: 'To confirm, we have made no changes to the unit prices we offer.'But, Peter Earl, head of energy at website Compare the Market, believes the changes are akin to price hikes, stating: 'Stealth hikes to energy bills like ...

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    Octopus Energy launches deal that PAYS you to use electricity when the wholesale price drops - but will it really save you money?

    Small supplier Octopus Energy has launched a new 100 per cent green electricity tariff that could actually pay you for using electricity.The Agile Octopus deal changes how much it charges customers every half hour by tracking wholesale energy prices. When wholesale costs go down, customers pay less and when wholesale costs rise, bills rise also. At times, wholesale costs fall below zero, when there is so much energy being pumped into the grid that suppliers are paid to take some out.  Smart pricing: Octopus will send 'Plunge Pricing' alerts to encourage you to use energy at the cheapest times of dayOctopus Energy ...

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    Could my energy supplier cut off my gas or electricity using my smart meter? I owe it money

    I am in debt to my energy supplier and worried it might use my smart meter to cut off my gas and electricity supply. I've heard that smart meters can be used by providers to stop the energy supply. Can they legally do this and where can I get help if this happens? If I fall behind on my energy payments, could my provider cut me off using my smart meter?Rebecca Rutt, of This is Money, replies: Your energy provider cannot turn off your energy supply if you are in debt to it without first fully assessing your situation and offering you ...

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  • Bills

    Sky is hiking some bills from April - here's how you can get out of your contract or find a better deal

    Sky has confirmed a price hike for customers from April, raising prices by an average £2.50 per month, or £30 per year. The telecoms giant is raising prices on selected TV bundles, some broadband packages and for some Sky Sports customers on a rolling deal.But some customers can avoid the hikes and switch to a better, cheaper deal without paying a penalty.  Sky Bet Championship: Norwich City vs Ipswich Town shown earlier this month on Sky Sports Football What’s going up? The Original, Variety and Box Sets bundles Sky offers will all increase in price by £1.50 per month.Sports fans on a rolling contract ...

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    Ikea encourages British households to switch to a green energy tariff with promise of up to £300 annual savings

    Swedish furniture giant Ikea has partnered with a collective energy switching firm to encourage households to sign-up to a 100 per cent renewable tariff.Ikea is not launching a tariff, rather nudging people to switch to a greener energy supplier, joining forces with the Big Clean Switch.The latter is a 'profit for purpose' firm that helps people move to renewable energy providers. The pair say that switching to a tariff with them could save households around £300 a year through lower electricity and gas bills. Bright idea? Swedish furniture Ikea has teamed up with the Big Clean Switch to help households secure ...

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    Act fast to get your hands on childcare vouchers: Miss the Spring deadline and you'll be stuck with the stingy tax-free childcare scheme

    The deadline for joining childcare voucher schemes is looming - so if you want to save money and reduce your tax bill, you need to act fast.Childcare vouchers save families money on the cost of childcare by reducing the amount of income tax and national insurance they - and their employers - have to pay. If your employer offers them, they can provide up to £55 each week (£243 per month) free of tax and NI that can be used to pay a registered childcare provider - as long as your employment earnings are not more than the higher rate 40 ...

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    'This month I will watch the football': The best mobile deals that let you swap features monthly, as EE launches new flexible tariff

    EE has overhauled its mobile tariffs, giving users the freedom to change their contract features on a monthly basis.The new deals mean customers can switch up their add-ons month by month, allowing them to sign up for services such as faster 4G, international roaming or access to the BT Sport app for as long or short a time as they want.The refresh is part of shift by many networks to offer customers an alternative to traditional 24-month contracts which offer little flexibility.Two-year deals have been a popular option as one of the most affordable ways to get your hands on ...

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