Consumer watchdog Which? is this week calling on energy companies not to push for the hard sale when installing smart meters in the UK. This news comes after Government pledged to ensure every home in Great Britain has a smart meter by 2020, at a cost of £11.3 billion.

Last month, Which? uncovered job descriptions for smart meter installers where commission was included as part of the payment package. Some installers had been told they would get an extra 16% of their pay if they hit targets, and were required to have ‘an aptitude for sales.’ It is understood that 4% of this commission is related to selling and that some of these companies are using this mass rollout as an opportunity to sell products, services and energy tariffs.

Which? Executive Director Richard Lloyd said, “Smart meters have the potential to save consumers a lot of money on their energy bills but consumers are expected to foot the 11.3 billion-pound bill for the roll out. We’re calling on energy companies to focus on installing them safely and efficiently, and not on lining their own pockets.”

In a bid to stop these sales tactics from undermining the confidence the UK public have in the energy sector, the Utility Warehouse, Good Energy, Ecotricity, First Utility, Ovo, Spark and Co-operative Energy have all agreed not to sell during the smart meter installation.

According to a separate Which? investigation, at least 11.5 million people have felt under pressure when approached by doorstep energy salespeople in the last 12 months. More strikingly, 93% of people say they would not let an energy company salesperson into their home, while 31% won’t even open the door to them.