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The 2018 Energy Monitor, performed by the Dutch “Authority of Consumer & Market”, shows an increase in the number of Dutch citizens regularly switching between energy suppliers.

For the purpose of purchasing solar panels however, WUA’s study shows consumers would rather stick with their current energy supplier: “Purchasing solar panels through an energy supplier different than the one currently delivering my energy, seems like asking for trouble.”

Everything under one roof

In this January 2019 study, 200 consumers on a desktop-oriented themselves online on the purchase of solar panels through an energy supplier of their choice.
The study shows that 56% of respondents prefer to purchase solar panels through their current energy supplier. 29% would consider acquiring solar panels through a different energy supplier, and 16% would combine a new energy contract with the purchase of solar panels through a different supplier than their current one.

The consumer prefers to ‘have everything under one roof’. One of the main reasons for this is saving themselves the administrative hassle. One of the respondents in the study explains: “I prefer to choose one main supplier to cover my energy services, as we are already overwhelmed by different companies and organizations demanding administration or sending us information. It is wonderful to lighten this administrative burden!”

It is worth considering

Consumers are not just automatically loyal to their current energy supplier: 76% would consider acquiring solar panels through a different energy supplier. Existing trust in the current energy supplier appears to be an important motivating factor. One of the respondents in the study explains: “they know what I need”.

Furthermore, people foresee obstacles when switching suppliers: “changing suppliers would most likely lead to a hassle with energy contracts” and “if there is an outage, the supplier providing energy would blame the supplier of the solar panels and vice versa”.

Let’s delay for now

Despite a record increase of solar panel installations in 2018 (an increase of 46% to 4.2 GWP), WUA’s study shows that consumers allow themselves some time to purchase solar panels. 44% would acquire solar panels within 3 years. Only 15% is considering purchasing solar panels in 2019.

WUA also asked consumers about other sustainability options. The results show that the majority of consumers (81%) are currently more efficient in using energy, and properly insulating their houses (59%). The use of a water pump is considered the least popular: only 8% of consumers are currently considering this option.