Think your electricity bills seem a bit higher than usual? Sure, you may have left the light switches on all day, or it could be that you've been accidentally overcharged.
One-third of Irish consumers (30%) claim to have been overcharged for at least one of their household essentials last year, according to new research from independent price comparison and switching service, Switcher.ie. This suggests that Irish households may have been overcharged by millions of euro last year.
The average amount overcharged was €53, and consumers also on average had to wait over five weeks to get their money back again.
Home phone customers had to wait an even longer six and a half weeks to get their money back, while electricity and broadband customers typically had to wait five weeks on average. Bit grim.
Worryingly, the level of overcharging uncovered could just be the tip of the iceberg, with many consumers admitting to not understanding their bills enough to be able to uncover an error, or simply not checking. In fact, 37% of Irish consumers aren’t sure if they were overcharged or not in the last year.
Many apparently feel they don’t have a choice but to trust their suppliers.