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'Work together' to save on heating oil

By collectively switching between utility companies, unfair deals from disinterested heating suppliers may at last come to an end, a study has suggested.

Despite information and advice becoming more accessible, customers are still finding the various deals available from energy, telecoms and financial services firms to be confusing, according to Consumer Focus.

The watchdog's study said that by using social media and collectively changing utility providers, customers could "shift the balance of power" from the companies and get cheaper prices.

It also said that an intermediary organisation could be set up to assemble customer's demands in a large, online group so "that companies are unable to ignore" them.

In Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands, more than 50% of consumers have signed up with collective switching organisations online for gas, electricity and heating oil.

Research suggests that a dual fuel energy contract saves an average household 200 to 250 euros (£163 to £204).

Copyright Press Association 2012

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