49% of Brits didn’t switch any of the 10 most common financial products in 2015

20 January 2016
  • Last year, 24 million people didn’t switch provider for any of the most common financial products or services (including car and home insurance, energy, broadband, mobile phone);
  • Car insurance and energy were the products people were most likely to shop around for.

Failure to switch financial products means that millions of people could each be losing out on £100s of savings.  New research reveals that in 2015 almost half (49%) of Brits (that’s 24 million people) didn’t switch any of the 10 most common financial products and services – potentially missing out on significant savings across a range of insurance, banking and household utility bills.

Car insurance topped the list of products switched in 2015, with just under a fifth (19%) of those surveyed switching to a better deal.  The survey, commissioned by Gocompare.com, also found that energy (17%) and home insurance (16%) were among the top products switched last year, while very few people (2%) changed their mortgage.

Rank

Financial and household utility products switched in 2015

%

1

Car insurance

19

2

Energy provider

17

3

Home insurance

16

4

Mobile phone

13

5

Broadband provider

12

6

Landline telephone

8

7

ISA or savings account

6

8

Credit card

6

9

Bank account (current account)

6

10

Mortgage

2

The survey revealed that, on average, people have stayed with the same car insurer for 2.4 years; home insurer for 2.7 years and the same energy supplier for 3.2 years.

Commenting on the research, Ben Wilson from Gocompare.com said, “If you’re looking for savings in 2016, switching providers for everyday financial services products and household utilities can be an easy way to slice hundreds of pounds off your outgoings.   

“The market for insurance, banking products and energy is highly competitive and there are some attractive deals to be had.  However, these offers are frequently used to attract new customers rather than reward loyal ones.  So it’s important to regularly review your finances to make sure that you’re not paying over the odds as an existing customer.

“Last year saw an increase in car insurance premiums and this upward trend is expected to continue into 2016, but different insurers price their products differently so there are potentially still savings to be made.  Motor and home insurance customers will also see an increase in their renewal premiums as a result of last November’s increase in Insurance Premium Tax – from 6% to 9.5%.  The tax, paid as a percentage of the premium, will hit those paying higher premiums hardest.  Therefore, we recommend that people shop-around and compare quotes from lots of different providers when their policies come up for renewal.”   

Ben Wilson continued: “Another common mistake people make with a range of outgoings – including energy tariffs and credit cards – is signing up to a product with an attractive introductory rate and then not reviewing the arrangement before the end of the offer period.  For example, when a fixed energy tariff expires, customers are automatically transferred to their suppliers’ standard variable tariffs, which is typically more expensive than the fixed deal.

“Households who compare prices and switch regularly can make some significant savings. For instance, by using Gocompare.com they could save up to £209 on their car insurance** and £292 on their energy bills***.”

1. Diary dates: In order to give yourself time to review your financial arrangements diary key dates including car and home insurance renewals, the expiry dates for fixed rate mortgage deals, fixed energy tariffs and introductory offers;

2. Don’t accept insurance renewal quotes or energy tariff changes without first checking that the new price you are being offered is competitive;

3. Compare prices and headline rates AND check the small print of the deal you are being offered.  Make sure that you are making like-for-like comparisons and understand all the charges, any penalties, exclusions and terms and conditions you will be required to meet, and that the product is right for you;

4. Use a comparison website – they provide quick and up-to-date information on a wide range of financial products and services.

Visit Gocompare.com for more information on switching your car insurance, home insurance or energy provider.

- ENDS -

Notes to editors:

On 5 January 2016, Bilendi conducted an online survey among 2001 randomly selected British adults who are Maximiles UK panelists.  The margin of error-which measures sampling variability-is +/- 2.2%. The results have been statistically weighted according to the most current education, age, gender and regional data to ensure samples representative of the entire adult population of United Kingdom. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.

*24 million based on the UK Adult population (20+) estimated to be 48,913,000 (Source: Annual mid-year population estimates for the UK, 2014). 49% of people have not switched providers for the financial products and services. 49% of 48,913,000 is 23,967,370.

** Based on Online independent research by Consumer Intelligence during 01 September 2015 to 30 September 2015. Based on a comparison of at least 40 companies, 51% of customers could save £209.81 with Gocompare.com Car Insurance.

*** Based on 51% (13,448) dual energy customers who received a price for switching with Gocompare.com, 01 July - 30 September 2015