Business Energy Updated:
Running a successful business takes a huge amount of financial awareness, not to mention the right products and a strong support network. But what about energy? It doesn't always appear that high on the agenda, particularly for smaller companies, but making sure you've got the right package can help keep your finances on track. Happily, Ofgem is proposing plans that should make it easier to do just that.
The regulator has announced new rules intended to give further help to Britain's smallest businesses when they're shopping around for energy deals. Essentially, it'll be easier for firms to make accurate comparisons, as suppliers will be required to include all the relevant information to make it as simple as possible.
Energy customers will be told the price of their current deal as well as the new rates that will be charged at the end of the contract, and they'll also be told how much energy they use annually. This means they'll have everything they need to compare their current supplier's prices with those of others in the market, putting them in the best possible position to negotiate new deals.
There'll also be a standard 30-day notice period for cancellations, meaning businesses will know exactly when to tell their supplier they want to switch, no matter who they're with, and suppliers themselves will need to acknowledge all termination notices within five working days of receipt.
These new proposals are a welcome addition to the rules previously implemented. Ofgem has already brought in tougher standards of conduct, designed so that businesses get fairer treatment from their supplier, and has ensured contract information is much clearer.
According to the regulator, since March this year around 160,000 more small businesses have benefitted from these additional rules. All bills for the smallest business now have to show the contract end date, so customers are prompted to think about comparing the market, and it's hoped that these new proposals could benefit even more small companies.
In the meantime, if you're not happy with your business energy supplier or if you think you're paying too much, don't be afraid to shop around. Comparing the market is the only way to make sure you've got the package that suits your business needs, so don't be locked in to another contract with your current supplier – compare the options and find out how much you could save.
Disclaimer: Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.
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