Scottish Power Review

Scottish Power is one of the Big Six energy suppliers in the UK. This company claims to be the first electric utility in the UK to deliver 100% renewable energy to its customers. The utility also has several projects in place to help the UK achieve its Net Zero target.

This utility has excellent tariffs and a wide variety of services that will make your life easier. In this article, we analyze in detail every aspect of this company, its tariff plans, pricing, and we even take into account the opinion of current customers regarding the performance of the company. 

Who is Scottish Power? 

Scottish Power is the first energy provider in the UK that delivers customers with the option of providing them with 100% green energy. Aside from delivering electric power to homes and businesses, this utility provides gas service and some other extra services.

Figure 2: Scottish Power Green Energy Scale – Source: Scottish Power

While most utilities providing clean energy purchase a fraction of all of their renewable energy from generators across the UK, Scottish Power generates their green energy with a series of wind farms located in the region. These wind farms allow the company to include the green tariffs, so homeowners and businesses can consume 100% clean energy.

In total, Scottish Power has over 40 operational wind farms, achieving a total wind capacity of 2,000 MW. This company is a subsidiary of the Iberdrola Group, a world-leading energy provider that is leading the renewable energy industry with a total installed capacity of 29,500W.

Scottish Power operates in the central and southern region of Scotland, the northern region of Wales, in Merseyside, and a fraction of Cheshire and Shropshire. 


Is Scottish Power Going Bust?

Since the reopening of the economy in 2021 after the COVID-19 lockdown, the cost for liquefied natural gas hit a record high, due to Asia lowering the supply delivered to Europe, deeply affecting the energy industry.

By October 2021, around 13 British electrical suppliers went bust, forcing 2 million customers to switch providers. By December, this number increased to 30 companies in total, which arises the question of whether or not will Scottish Power go bust. Well, it seems not.

While the crisis will not go unnoticed for Scottish Power since its profits dropped by 39%, it is important to remember that this electric supplier is still one of the Big Six. Scottish Power has acquired the customer portfolio of several busted companies, increasing their customers by 70,400.

Scottish power also has two extra points in favor. First and foremost, at least 40% of the energy supplied by this company comes from renewable or clean sources, and secondly, Scottish Power is not alone. This company is owned by the Iberdrola Group, meaning that the parent company which is much larger, can provide slightly lower gas prices for its subsidiary in the UK.  

Considering both points in favor for Scottish Power, customers of this company should not worry about the company going bust, but they should concern about energy prices increasing, like they will do with every other company. Ofgem already increased the price cap by 12% in past months, and customers should expect a new increase by next April, increasing the annual bill cost up to £1,660 a year.


Scottish Power Market Share

Scottish Power, is considered to be one of the Big Six energy suppliers. This is a group that comprises the six biggest gas and electricity suppliers in the UK: British Gas, EDF, E.ON, RWE Npower, Scottish Power, and SSE/OVO Energy.  

Figure 3: UK Electricity Supply Market Share Q1 2010 to Q4 2020 – Source: Statista

As one of the Big Six, Scottish Power accounts for 9 – 12% of the electricity supply retail market in the UK for the last 11 years. From Q1 2010 to Q1 2019, the company held around 10% – 12% of the retail market. Since Q3 2019 up to date, the influence of the company has been reduced down to 9% of the energy market. 


What Tariffs & Plans Does Scottish Power Offer?

Scottish Power, offers a wide variety of gas & electricity tariffs for homeowners and businesses. These are the following: 

1. Fixed Rate Tariffs

Scottish Power offers three fixed rate tariff options for homes. The tariffs vary, considering a 1 – 2 year plan and the type of insurance. These are the different fixed rate tariffs available:

1 Year Fixed Price Energy:

  • Fully fixed energy tariffs until February 2023.
  • £60 exit fee.

2 Years Fixed Price Energy:

  • Fully fixed energy tariffs until February 2024.
  • Your home will be powered with 100% renewable energy.
  • No exit fee.
  • You will be supporting Cancer Research in the UK.

1 Year Fixed Price Energy + Boiler Insurance:

  • Fully fixed energy tariffs until February 2023.
  • £60 exit fees.
  • This plan requires the installation of a Smart Meter.
  • The Boiler Insurance makes sure that your home boiler will be fixed or replaced in the case of a breakdown. 

2. Variable-rate Tariff

The Scottish Power Variable-rate Tariffs, are the regular rates for customers of the electric utility that do not have a fixed rate tariff. If you do not acquire a fixed rate tariff plan or reach the end of it without renewing the plan, you will be set on the variable-rate tariff system.

By October 2021, the variable-rate tariff for Scottish Power was set at 20.076p to 26.834p per kilowatt-hour consumed during the day for monthly payments. Some regions include nightly tariffs, which range from 10.795p to 11.909p. 

3. Prepayment 

For Scottish Power customers looking to prepay their electricity bill, they can do so with the Smart Prepayment (PAYG) system. The Pay As You Go (PAYG) meter, allows you to monitor how much energy you are consuming, ensuring you can recharge your credits as you go.

By using a PAYG meter, you will only spend the amount of money that you want, by increasing the credits for your meter by as many as you wish. If your meter is running short on credits, the Scottish Power App will send you an alert once your credits fall below £1.

4. Business Tariffs

If you are a business owner, you can choose from one of two plans for your workplace. The plans, their conditions, and benefits, are the following:

Business Fixed:

  • Fix the cost of your consumed energy for the next 1 – 3 years.
  • Fully manage your account online.
  • Receive energy efficiency optimization advice from Scottish Power & the Carbon Trust. 

Standard Fixed:

  • Have a fixed cost for electricity for up to 1 year.
  • Acquire any other plan with no exit fee.

Customers who do not opt for the Business Fixed plan or renew their plan, will fall under the Standard Fixed plan for businesses. 

5. SmartPower EV

The SmartPower EV plan is practical and convenient, available for certain customers of the company. With this plan, you will be able to power your EV for ten times less than the oil cost per mile after factoring in discounts from Scottish Power for EVs.

With the SmartPower EV plan, you will be charging your vehicle with a Smart Charger, between midnight and 05:00 a.m. Due to the lower off-peak electricity costs, your EV is going to be charged at a much lower rate than the regular tariffs.

If you want to sign into the SmartPower EV plan, you need to be a current customer of Scottish Power, with a pre-existing smart meter. You can use your EV charger or acquire an EV charger with Scottish Power


Payment Options

Scottish Power always looks to make the life of their customers easier when paying their electrical bills. To ensure this, the company offers a wide range of payment options:

  • Direct Debit: By choosing Direct Debit, you can evenly spread the cost of your yearly energy consumption throughout the whole year.
  • Pay As You Go: Pay As You Go, is a simple way to use electricity by adding prepaid credits to your account, allowing you to consume the number of credits that you have in your account.
  • Monthly cash plan: With the Monthly cash plan, you will make regular cash payments for your monthly electricity bills, at the tariff plan that you are subscribed to.
  • With a card: You can easily pay for your electricity by card or bank transfers, either by using the app or accessing the website via your phone or computer.
  • Pay by Bank Giro PayPoint: Customers looking to pay their electricity bills at the post office, PayPoint outlets, or the bank, can opt to Pay by Bank Giro PayPoint.

With all of these payment options, you will be able to comfortably pay your electricity bills at your own preference. In case you need it, Scottish Power will also help you make your bills more affordable, by providing you with all the information you need about electricity usage, how bills are charged, and more.


Customer Service

Scottish Power customers can get in touch with the company at any time, allowing them to solve electric problems, issue a complaint, get information about plans or services, and more. Here are the methods by which you can contact the customer service department of Scottish Power.

  • Via your online account.
  • Via Chat on their website
  • Write an email.
  • Call customer service via the 0800 040 7002 phone number. ( This number is available from Monday to Friday, from 8:00 a.m. to 07:00 p.m., and Saturdays from 08:30 a.m. until 01:00 p.m.)

Customer Reviews

If you want to know the real performance of Scottish Power, the best way is to directly read the opinion of the current customers of the company. This company has been rated 1.1/5 on Trustpilot, and it is placed 24th out of 25 on the surveys performed by Which?.

According to most customers, this company has been poorly performing in the electrical industry of the UK. There are many reports regarding bill inaccuracy, a poor handle of customer complaints, and several other issues.

According to Which? Surveys, customers do not feel that they are getting the value for their money with Scottish Power. Due to these and several other reasons, the UK regulator Ofgem has taken compliance actions into Scottish Power, to help the electric utility solve these issues and target a better service to UK customers. 


How Green Is Scottish Power’s Energy

Scottish Power, states that they are a 100% clean energy electric utility, however, this is not entirely true. While this company does provide customers with the option to fully use renewable energy under the Green Tariffs plan, it also has clients that are subscribed to other tariffs.

In the Fuel Mix section of the Scottish Power website, you can learn about how green Scottish Power is. Here, you will learn that customers subscribed to “other tariffs”, consume energy from other sources that are not the 40 wind farms generating the renewable energy of the company. Customers under these tariffs will consume energy from the following sources:

  • 6% of the energy is generated from coal.
  • 71% of the energy is generated from gas.
  • 9% of the energy is generated from nuclear.
  •  8% of the energy is generated from renewable sources.
  • 6% of the energy is generated from other sources.

After factoring in both, the customers under the Green Tariffs and the Other tariffs, the Fuel Mix of Scottish Power for the 2020 – 2021 year is the following:

  • 4% of the energy is generated from coal.
  • 46% of the energy is generated from gas.
  • 6% of the energy is generated from nuclear plants.
  • 40% of the energy is generated from renewable sources.
  •  4% of the energy is generated from other sources.

Considering these numbers, Scottish Power only operates with a 40% renewable energy source. This means that up to 60% of the energy operated by Scottish Power, does not come from renewable sources. 


Scottish Power’s Digital Presence

Scottish Power has a strong digital presence. You can read information about the UK electric utility and news on their different social network accounts:

The Iberdrola owns Scottish Power and posts information regarding green energy, the company itself, and much more. This website posts content in Spanish. 


Scottish Power Extra Services

Just like Scottish Power provides services delivering gas & electricity for UK customers, they also provide some extra services. These are the following: 

Boiler Care

One of the best services for customers to have through the coldest times of the year is the Boiler Care or Boiler Cover. This is an insurance service that covers your Boiler through any breakdown event, allowing you to ensure you have a boiler throughout winter. With this service, Scottish Power will fix or replace your boiler, in the case that something happens to it. 

Plumbing, Drains & Electrics

The Plumbing, Drains & Electrics services provided by Scottish Power, is an emergency insurance, covering any of these three vital components of your home. Starting at £3.25 per month, you will be covered in the case that your plumbing, drains, or electrical wiring malfunctions, with a service provided by AXA. This service has different plans and coverage for the service. 

Kitchen Appliances

The Appliance Care for your kitchen appliances is an insurance service covering any of your kitchen appliances against a malfunction or breakdown.  To provide this service, Scottish Power joined with Domestic & General Services Limited, to provide you with a full coverage service starting at £5.50 monthly, varying on the appliances covered and how many of them are covered. 

Electric Vehicle Charging

Scottish Power Electric Vehicle Charging service, provides a full service of EV home chargers and special EV home tariffs. This service ensures that your EV charges between midnight and 05:00 a.m., when the cost for electricity is lower, ensuring that your vehicle charges at the lowest possible cost. 

Smart Thermostat

Thermostats are one of the main home appliances consuming high amounts of energy. To have a warm home when you arrive, you only need to acquire the Smart Thermostat service of Scottish Power, which allows you to control the thermostat of your home from anywhere.

With a service costing £19.99 per month over 12 months, you can control the temperature of your home. This allows you to control your thermostat in real-time, instead of following a pre-programmed schedule that might end up costing you more energy than necessary. 


How To Switch To Scottish Power? 

If you are looking to switch electric utilities and hire Scottish Power as your gas & electricity provider, first you will need to get a quote for your specific postal code. After getting the quote and hiring the service, you have to follow a 3 steps procedure throughout 3 weeks:

Step 1: Switch underway

The first step is to create your Scottish Power account. You will have to wait for a letter to arrive with all of the information for your contract, tariff hired, and supply starting date. After getting the letter, you need to create your online account, allowing you to monitor the whole process through there.

Step 2: Meter reading required

You will have to wait at least 5 days since the company requires the reading of your meter over 5 days. This will help Scottish Power size the demand of your home, setting your account properly. These 5 readings will also be the final readings for the bill of your previous electrical supplier.

Step 3: Switchover complete

The third step starts when Scottish Power tells you that the switchover is complete. After that, you can finally start managing your electrical system via your online account and the app, enjoying all of the services this utility has to offer.


Scottish Power FAQ

Is Scottish Power a good company to deal with?

Scottish Power has several complaints regarding customer service, prices, clarity of bills, and several other issues, not making it the best option out there. However, according to customers surveyed in Which?, this company has been improving. After Ofgem stepped in, the company started to resolve customer complaints at a faster rate, meaning that the company is rapidly improving.

Does Scottish Power Offer Smart Meters? 

Yes, Scottish Power offers Smart Meters that will help you with your energy usage in real-time, and control the electrical load of your home accordingly. By using this service, you can know the exact amount of power consumed, the accumulated price of your electrical bill, and much more information. 

What New Services Will Scottish Power Provide?

Currently, Scottish Power is working on offering solar batteries, home insulations, and smart heat tariffs. To subscribe as soon as they include these services, we recommend you constantly check the website of Scottish Power, to be one of the first customers acquiring the services. 


ScottishPower Energy People Trust [Shut Down]

The Energy People Trust was an independent charity focused on fixing fuel poverty. Scottish Power did most of the funding for this trust. The Energy People Trust has donated over £15 million pounds of funds into life-changing projects.

However, in 2018, they decided that their charitable funding would be combined through the ScottishPower Foundation. This foundation was started in 2013.

More details of the new replacement foundation can be found here.


Scottish Power Pros & Cons

Like most electric utilities in the UK, Scottish Power has several pros and cons regarding their service, tariffs, and many other aspects. Here are the main pros and cons of this company.

Pros

Scottish Power is a company working to ensure that many customers have different plans, payment options, and a variety of services, which is why the company has several pros to it. Here are some of the best pros:

  • The domestic green tariffs are backed by 100% green electricity.
  • The company generates its clean energy with more than 40 wind farms.
  • Clients can opt for fixed-rate plans or varying-tariff plans.
  • Customers with EVs can charge their vehicles for a fraction of the regular price.
  • You can monitor and control your energy usage by using the ScottishPower App.
  • Scottish Power has raised over £30 million for Cancer Research in the UK.
  • The company has solutions for smart transportation, smart solar systems, smart heating, and smart homes.
  • It provides a variety of extra services.

Cons

Currently, Ofgem, the UK energy regulator, has a case against Scottish Power, describing most of the cons of this electric utility. These cons are the following:

  • The company performs poorly when handling critical issues for customers.
  •  It takes too long to attend to complaints and solve them.
  • Even though customers have very similar complaints, Scottish Power does not make anything to solve the root problems causing the inconvenience.  
  • There is a wide range of customers that do not feel that the value of the service is worth the money they are paying for.

Verdict on Scottish Power

Scottish Power is one of the Big Six energy suppliers in the UK, but sadly, this does not make it one of the best ones. This company has a relatively bad reputation regarding customer support, bill clarity, and several other aspects.

This UK utility has many interesting tariffs for home business customers, making it a great option, price-wise. Since Ofgem stepped in, the company has apparently been improving, which is an interesting bright side for future clients.

If you are doubtful about switching to Scottish Power, we recommend you keep a close eye on its improvements over time. This company offers several interesting services, making it potentially good for the future, but at the current date, it might not be the best option for you. 

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Jack Williams

Jack is the founder of Energy Sanity. He has been analyzing the energy industry for over a decade now. His data-driven analysis have helped thousands save money on electricity bills. Jack holds a PhD in Electrical Engineering with a focus on Energy Economics.