Electricity: record prices? Should we go back to EDF? All the doubts you have about alternative providers

Electricity: record prices?  Should we go back to EDF?  All the doubts you have about alternative providers

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The energy crisis has many households fearing significant increases in their electricity bills. As more and more French people turn to EDF’s regulated tariffs, what are the advantages of this approach? To see more clearly, La Dépêche spoke with Aurian de Maupeou, co-founder of Selectra, a company specialized in comparing electricity offers.

Hydroption in forced liquidation, Oui Energy expelled from the market, Iberdrola forced to expel its customers… With the energy crisis, many alternative electricity providers are struggling to cope with rising prices.

Anticipating unreasonable bills, some of their customers are already turning to EDF and its FITs. But is it really the right time to change contracts? Should we fear a price increase or possible cuts?

To see more clearly, La Dépêche spoke with Aurian de Maupeou, co-founder of Selectra, a company specialized in comparing electricity offers.

I am a customer of an alternative provider. Is it the right time to change contracts?

This is a question that many people are asking, while the tariff shield established by the government will end at the beginning of 2023. In reality, resorting to EDF depends on your energy provider. “If you are one of those customers who has received a letter announcing upcoming price increases, then it may be time to change operators,” advises the expert.

Are some alternative providers still competitive?

As most of the “small” suppliers do not produce electricity but buy it on the wholesale market, they depend on the current economic situation. However, the French still find their account with these alternative operators. “We can cite the example of Total, whose price is 5% cheaper than EDF. With these offers, the consumer is a clear winner,” said Aurian de Maupeou.

In fact, thanks to the acquisition of Direct Energie launched in April 2018, the French energy company benefits from production capacities that allow it to avoid sourcing from the wholesale market.

“Despite the situation, Watenfall, the Swedish EDF, maintained very attractive prices until September 1. ENI, the Italian Total, continued to market gas at the same price as the regulated rate, even though it would have had every interest in selling it at al market and not customers”, observes the energy expert. However, he beware: if these prices may seem interesting at the moment, the end of the price shield may change the situation completely.

Should we turn to EDF?

“EDF prices act as a standard and evolve in a controlled manner by the State. That is why we speak of regulated tariffs”, explains Aurian de Maupeou. To date, EDF’s rate is set at 17.4 cents per kilowatt hour over the basic offer. “This price, which should have increased enormously during the winter, stabilized thanks to the intervention of the State, which limited prices to 4%”, observes the expert. In short, if you are one of the millions of people who have subscribed to an EDF subscription, it is better, for the time being, not to change your contract.

Have you subscribed to a private operator’s offer and want to return to EDF’s regulated tariffs? Nothing could be simpler: you just have to contact the provider to be redirected to an offer at the regulated price. The icing on the cake: EDF takes care of the paperwork with your current supplier.

I want to change providers. Should I worry about outages?

The question has come up a lot on social media. Don’t worry, though: “outages are never linked to the supplier,” recalls Aurian de Maupeou. “Your electricity is always guaranteed, regardless of your supplier. Even if you do not have a subscription, Enedis can, in the worst case, limit the power of your meter to 1 kilowatt. Less charging the phone or even watching television”, warns the energy expert. .

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