You’ve seen the news. Electricity and gas prices are soaring. Compare the Market recently warned of the huge price rises. The chances are that you are feeling it as your energy prices go up.

As I am in Victoria my email from Compare the Market showed price changes in Victoria (see table below). If you live in NSW, QLD or South Australia the price increases would be much greater, as much as double the figures in this table.

The stakes are high, you need all the help that you can get. Let’s dig deeper.

Compare the Market Energy – how do they work?

Compare the Market claims to compare 10 of the 60 energy providers in Australia. Although when it comes down to specifics Compare the Market gas and electric actually compare fewer providers again. e.g. Home – electricity 8 (Vic) 9 (NSW) 6 (Qld) 5 (SA), gas 4 (Vic) 5 (NSW) 2 (Qld) 3 (SA), dual fuel 5 (Vic) 6 (NSW) 2 (Qld) 3 (SA); Small Business – electricity 4 (Vic) 3 (NSW) 2 (Qld) 3 (SA), gas 2 (Vic).

Compare the Market do not actually compare the market, but only a small fraction of the market.

You ask, why do they compare these providers?

It’s ‘simples’, these companies pay Compare the Market a handsome commission. While the actual commission paid to Compare the Market is confidential, typical commissions in the industry are around $130 for switching an electricity customer and $220 for switching a dual fuel customer. Commissions for small business are much higher, typically $250 to $500.

There’s another catch. As their website says, “At times certain brands or products may not be available or offered to you.” So beware, you may not be offered the best offer available for the energy provider that they recommend to you.

If you happy with the fine print, knock yourself out! But be aware that you are leaving money on the table.

What if I want a more genuine comparison?

I have quoted Compare the Market gas and electric because they are the market leader, and their grip on the market has strengthened since their acquisition of ISelect has made them the dominant player in energy comparison. ISelect have a checkered history, for example being fined for misleading customers.

My dream is to simply get the best deal up front and keep getting the best deal as prices change so I don’t need keep abreast of the changes myself. Compare the Market compare such a small panel of providers, that it’s most unlikely that you’ll get the best deal upfront. But the real killer is that Compare the Market don’t keep monitoring your plan. Prices of the 40,000 energy plans change frequently. How can you keep track of that?

Fortunately there is an exciting new service that solves these problems. It’s a personalised and simple energy comparison service called Energy Umpire.

Unlike other services, Energy Umpire is not associated with any Energy company thus giving a bias free comparison. 

What people are saying

Frank from Parramatta said “After uploading my latest bill to Energy Umpire, I got an instant and Free Comparison report online, confirmed instantly by email! I was impressed that they put my savings in writing too.”

Ravi from Malvern said “Energy Umpire’s recommended electricity provider saved me $320 annually. I was amazed to find that Energy Umpire also switched me to the cheapest gas provider. More than happy to answer any questions, my switch was guided by a very helpful Katie. Energy Umpire also checked the counter offer from AGL.”

“Then came the clincher: If another supplier becomes the cheapest in the future, Energy Umpire lets me know and helps me to get switched to the cheaper provider.”

Laura from Coolangatta said “The cost was minimal. I get access to savings reports on every bill and switch instructions when needed, all for a price of just $10 which includes personalised advice for a year to make sure my switch is completed properly, any counter offer is checked, and switch me again if a cheaper offer comes along.”

“You should try it.”