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Consumers advised to think twice before using credit repair services

Consumers are being urged to reconsider using energy credit repair agents in an effort to reduce household costs.

According to Energy and Water Ombudsman New South Wales (EWON) and the Energy and Water Ombudsman Victoria (EWOV) surveys, some consumers are paying thousands of dollars for help from an energy credit repair agent.

An energy credit repair agent's job is to help customers whose credit rating has been affected because they have previously not paid their utility bill.

The EWON survey found that on average these credit repair agents are charging fees of $1000 each time they remove a client's name from a credit default listing.

Many of these households are struggling to make ends meet and in some instances have already been credit listed and do not need to pay additional fees, New South Wales energy and water ombudsman Claire Petre said.

In the case of energy agent fees, many of the agents actually use the ombudsman's free service and then charge their clients, Ms Petre added.

"EWON is concerned about consumers in financial hardship paying a business for a service they could access themselves free of charge."

If you are finding it a challenge to keep up with your power bills, then you may want to compare electricity prices across a few different suppliers to see if you may be able to find a better deal.