With some fundamental differences to domestic energy contracts and without the consumer protections offered to private customers, navigating the world of business energy contracts can be confusing at best, downright baffling at worst. With over three decades of business experience, let us try to demystify the world of commercial energy supply contracts for you.
It’s all in the small print
This is where energy companies set out their vast schedule of terms and conditions. Be sure to scour these with a fine-tooth comb to fully understand the more onerous conditions attached to a business energy supply.
Out of contract?
The good news? You’ll never be cut off. The bad news? It’ll cost you! Unlike other utilities, if you forget to renew your energy contract, your supply won’t stop. Instead your supplier can switch you to ‘out of contract’ rates which can be anywhere from 30 to 70% more expensive than your carefully negotiated deal.
Better the devil you don’t
If your contract is coming to an end, it’s time to play the field. Your current supplier will undoubtedly make you an offer of new rates which may not compete with the open market. Your best bet is (and our recommendation will always be) to cancel your existing contract and compare deals from across the market. Even if you end up back with your current supplier, the open market deal should beat any renewal quote they give you.
Pay it off
If you’re ready to switch and you have an outstanding balance with your existing supplier, they can refuse to let you take out a new contract. Instead switching you to those hefty ‘out of contract’ rates until the debt is settled. Not only will you pay for it in the short term, you’ll likely lose out on your new deal with a new supplier, costing you more in the long term.
Your energy supply will automatically stop when you leave the old premises BUT the supply at the new premises will be offered at ‘out of contract’ rates till you secure your new deal. It’s in your best interests to secure that new deal before moving or promptly when you get into the new building to make sure you aren’t paying through the nose.
You can be cut off
It’s a reassuring thing to know that domestic energy supply can never be cut off for non-payment but this isn’t the case for business energy supply. If you fail to make your payments, your business can be disconnected and you’ll likely be charged a substantial fee to get the power turned back on and are looking at a severe delay in getting that power reinstated. It’s worth carefully checking your contract to make sure you’re all paid up to the end of your contract.
Renewing Your Energy Supply
We know a thing or two about securing the best energy deal, follow these simple steps to find the right supplier for you:
- Check your termination dates and the T&Cs to make sure it’s not too late to cancel your contract.
- Write to or email your current supplier within the notice period to terminate your contract. Leaving you free to browse the market.
- Prices can change as often as daily so it’s important to get the timing right when searching for your new deal.
- It’s quotation time. You can approach suppliers yourself to find the best prices to compare or get our knowledgeable team to do the hard work for you. They’ll get the quotes, compare the prices and contracts and arrange the switchover for you – easy!
- Settle up with your current supplier so you’re free to take a better deal
- Sign your new terms
- Your new deal starts (on completion of necessary credit and security checks).
Don’t muddle through alone. If you’d like a hand negotiating your new business energy deal, get in touch on 01237 420010 and talk to one of the team about our review and switch service today.