Reducing Electricity and Gas Rates for Small Business Owners
In these days of the continuing uncertainty in the economy and more cuts to come one thing a small business owner can do is to reduce all their utility bills such as electricity, gas and telephone. So how can you do this without affecting the service. We investigate.
One tactic many of the energy companies use is to put businesses on so called “roll over contracts” for their electric and gas. This means that any contract you sign will have a clause when you can terminate or even renegotiate the contract each year and if you don’t exercise that right then the energy provider will put you on another contract for another year and can increase your prices without informing you.
A recent ruling by ofgem, the industry regulator, said that for micro business users the energy companies had to inform customers when their contracts run out so for the smallest of users taking out new contract this is less of a burden but for everyone else it’s something to take account of when thinking of trying to reduce your costs.
Electricity and gas – lowering your rates
Just like you would do with your own household bills you should shop around when your contract comes to an end. We have a page about electricity and supplies for business users and this provides a little more detail but in summary, you should shop around with the big 6 suppliers in the market (British Gas, Southern Electric, Npower, EDF, EON energy and ScottishPower) who can all (apart from one) provide you with a quote online from their website. Just enter your postcode, meter number and estimated consumption and you’ll get your proposed rates.
This is however just the starting point as although rates online are normally the lowest prices you can get for energy tariffs it’s always best to telephone the supplier to see if you can negotiated them downwards even further. Alternatively you could use the professional services of an energy broker who has better relationships with the energy suppliers than you’ll ever had. If you want more information on electric and gas supplies including dual fuel contracts there is a wealth of information on this website that takes you through all the different types of contracts and providers that supply business users.
It will probably only take you an hour to get quotes from all the suppliers and put in a telephone call but at the end of the day you could save your business literally thousands of pounds each year by switching to someone cheaper and your supply will virtually be the same. Switching suppliers is also hassle free as your new provider will prepare and process all the paperwork on your behalf.
Telecoms and broadband
The same goes for business telecommunications services. If you have had the same supplier for years the chances are that you are on a bad deal. The cost of broadband has plummeted in recent years for both domestic and business users and there are many special deals on the market place. There are also specialist price comparison sites out there that can show you all of the deals available.
As you would do at home why not go through all your utility providers and get online quotes to see how much you could save. Even if you just put aside half a day to look at energy, telecommunications and even office supplies you’ll make savings which will go directly to your bottom line and improve your profits this year.