How to change the supplier of electric energy in Germany

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Switch of the energy supplier

Handschlag zur Einigung © Jonas Ginter,
Handschlag zur Einigung © Jonas Ginter,

On this page we have collected information about how to change the supplier of electric energy in Germany. In the year 1998, the German Parliament passed a bill that, in general terms aimed at the deregulation of the energy sector in Germany. Since 1998 consumers can change their supplier of electric energy more freely. In the last 12 years the competition in the electricity sector increased quite clearly. But the prices of electric current did not decrease like it was expected and intended. Today there are more than 900 supplier of electric energy in Germany. The prices of electricity differ from region to region due to different network charges for the conduct of electric current. Of course every supplier of electric energy has its own tariff. For Consumers it is quite difficult to find the best tariffs, because there are many different tariffs and many suppliers. With our calculator for electricity tariffs consumers can easily find the best supplier of electric energy. Often more than 100 Euro can be saved yearly through the switch of the supplier of electric energy. In the following paragraphs we describe how the switch of the electronic energy works in Germany

Switch of the supplier of electric energy in three steps:

1. Find the best tariffs
2. Request contract documents
3. Termination of the agreement with the current energy supplier

1. Find the best tariffs

The best tariffs in your region can easily be found with our calculator for electricity tariffs. The calculator was awarded several times for example from the “Stiftung Warentest”, a well known and neutral foundation for comparative product testing. With the calculator you can compare the prices for electricity and electricity tariffs. The calculator is available only in German language, but the calculator is very intuitive. It can be handled even with only a little German knowledge. At first you have to type your yearly consumption of electricity into the input field. When you do not know your consumption of electricity you can orient yourself at these estimated values.

  • 1 person household: 1.944 kWh
  • 2 person household: 3.417 kWh
  • 3 person household: 4.350 kWh
  • 4 person household: 5.149 kWh
  • 5 person household: 6.135 kWh
  • 6 person household: 7.199 kWh
  • 7 person household: 8.123 kWh

Secondly you have to insert your five-figure postal code into the calculator form. When you chose the option “Nur Ökostrom-Tarife“, then only green electricity will be shown. To start the Calculator, you have to press the “berechnen” button.

Calculator for electricity tariffs

2. Request contract documents

After you have found the best tariff, you could order contract documents, or you could even fill out the documents online. If you are not sure about the contract, then you should contact your energy supplier of choice directly. Often you can get hold of somebody, who speaks English. For the Change of the supplier you will need to know the name of your current energy supplier. This can be found normally at the top of your most recent bill or letter. Also tell your new supplier your serial number, your old customer id and your last year consumption of electricity. You could find these data on your bills, or you could ask your current supplier of electric energy.

3. Termination of the agreement with the current energy supplier

The transfer of your electricity supply in Germany is arranged by your new supplier. So you do not have to terminate your contract with your current supplier. This is handled by your new supplier. Your new supplier of choice will inform your current energy supplier. Of course your individual notice periods are respected. You will get an affirmation and a final statement from your old energy supplier. Please note, that the change of the electric supplier can take 6 – 10 weeks.

Are there any risks?

The change of the energy supplier in Germany cannot lead to a stop of electricity supply. The German law regulates, that the local energy supplier must deliver all households with electric current, even if you are not a client. So there is no risk of electrical power outage , because of a supplier change. Even if your new supplier is insolvent you will be delivered with electric current. You do not have to make technical changes, nor do you have to get a new serial number. The switch of the supplier of electric energy is risk free and is easy to handle. And with the right tariffs you could save a lot of money.

Further Information in German

Stromwechsel FAQ
Tariftricks der Stromanbieter
Strom Tarifrechner

Translation by: Globale Kommunikation

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