I’m actually shocked that Mercury energy have the cheek to do this scam. They are sending out notices to people (families) offering to lock in electricity prices for the next three years. They also say you could win free power for 3 years:
The problem is that people will be signing up for a staggering 36% increase in power.
Put bluntly – the average family in Auckland would move from paying $1940 per year to paying $2640 per year, a $700 increase. That’s $13.46 per week.
Meanwhile only ONE family will win that free power, and no suggestion of what your odds of winning actually are:
And of course there is an extra surprise in the fine print – a $150 early termination fee. At least you don’t have to pay it if you move to another place (most people move within 3 years) – so long as you choose Mercury as your supplier.
Although sadly Mercury do not supply the whole country – missing out Gisborne, Nelson, Invercargill as well as the much more popular “overseas” or “I now live in another flat or with someone else”
Shame on you Mercury Energy. You are offering to lock in customers for years, making them pay a huge increase in price, and giving essentially nothing in return.
Your competitors (and perhaps yourselves) are offering large cash bounties to those who threaten or do switch, but you are making people pay to stay.
My advice to everyone is to switch electricity suppliers often to make sure you are getting the best prices. You may even find that you get a phone call from your current suppler shortly thereafter – I’ve heard of people being offered $300 to stay.
I am a co-founder of PowerKiwi, which is a electricity retailer selling FlowerPower and other products on Powershop, so yes, we are in competition with Mercury. We are tiny in comparison of course, and even Powershop itself is tiny versus the other retailers. Click the flower above to sign up and get $50 of free credit. I cannot talk about how much you will save, as we don’t know and each case varies, but the stories we have heard are impressive.