Switching energy provider 'can limit fuel debt'

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Consumers struggling with fuel debt may be able to reduce their costs by switching provider, it has been claimed.

According to the Citizens Advice Bureau, bill payers should always "shop around" for the best deals and compare prices before signing up with an energy provider.

The service advises that consumers should ask about different tariffs and ways to pay, while also making sure quoted prices include VAT.

David Harker, chief executive of Citizens Advice, said it is essential for people to minimise their gas and electric bills, especially as winter approaches and the potential to fall into debt increases.

"Recent government increases in Warm Front Grants and Cold Weather Payments will go some way towards helping, but information on what help is available, targeted to those who are most vulnerable, must be a prime focus for the government and energy companies," he added.

He was commenting after the Citizens Advice Bureau reported that a 46 per cent rise in the number of consumers with fuel debts was seen during the first two quarters of 2009.

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