Are you looking to save potentially hundreds of pounds by getting a range of business energy quotes?
Did you know that in the UK, you only have a short time frame that you are allowed to switch, and your current supplier might need a notice period of 180 days?
Just imagine, you find the best business energy quotes for your company, but you miss the window and end up having to pay for another 12 months of your existing contract.
This means you could be paying a lot more for your energy than you have to.
No pressure there!
This guide will tell you how to find out what contract you have, how to get quotes, which providers might be best for your company, and finally, what is the process involved in getting business energy quotes?
And what are the benefits of switching?
- Reduce your energy bill
- Your supplier should manage the transition for you, saving you time and money
- According to Ofgem, gas customers were less satisfied than electricity customers
- If you have a micro business, your current supplier may not be accurate with your bill, but many companies offer smart meters
- Some providers provide online account management, which means that you know exactly how much your statement will be
Many businesses put off switching suppliers because it is often assumed that there is a lot of hassle and fees involved with making a switch. However, there are usually no costs or extra work because your supplier will do the switch for you, saving you from overpaying for your energy.
With the recent explosion of energy companies in the UK, it’s understandable that it could be a time-consuming process to go through each one to make sure you are going to switch to the best supplier for you, let alone working out what contract you may already be locked into.
How to get business energy quotes
Is your current contract stopping you from switching?
Before you request business energy quotes, you need to know what contract you currently have.
These can range from a fixed contract locking you into the company for five years or more, to a no fixed term contract that does not specify how long you need to stay with the supplier.
To find out what kind of contract you have and when your switching window is, all you need to do is call your current supplier and ask them. They should tell you over the phone.
In some cases, you can give your supplier 30 days notice before switching, but there have been instances where you have to give your supplier 180 days notice, which is why it’s important to know before you get business energy quotes.
Another option is to just check your last bill, that should tell you all the information you need about your contract to switch your business energy supplier.
Once you have that information, you should then consider what kind of tariff would work best for you and your company.
What are the five general contract types?
- Fixed term – This is possibly the most popular type of contract in the UK for both domestic and commercial properties because it protects you from the risk of fluctuating energy prices for the duration of your contract. This fixes the cost per kWh, but it does not set the amount of your energy per month. This type of arrangement is suitable for businesses of every size because you can rest assured that the cost of your energy will not leave you with a massive, unexpected bill overnight.
- Variable rate – The second most popular type of contract is a variable rate, and polar to the fixed term contracts, this contract means that the price of your energy per kWh will rise and fall with market activity giving you a potentially unstable monthly bill. There are positives to this contract though as if the price of energy decreases, so will the cost of your energy. The Daily Telegraph reported in October 2015 that wholesale electricity had become 20% cheaper and wholesale gas was 37% cheaper, which was the lowest it had been since 2010.
- Deemed rates – If you are new to your property, or you have terminated your contract with your energy provider but haven’t switched supplies yet, you will automatically be put on ‘deemed rates’ or in other words, default rates. Deemed rates can be higher than with contracts, often because there is no way of the provider being able to work out your usage or energy needs, so it is advisable to try and move to a fixed term or variable contract as soon as possible.
- Twenty-eight day – If your company has existed since before 1990, you might be on a twenty-eight-day contract. This is a contract that existed before the energy market was deregulated, and if your business is still on this type of arrangement, you could be overpaying a considerable amount for your businesses energy.
- Rollover – This is an increasingly rare contract due to the high prices which you are often locked into for at least 12 months. This is when you and your supplier have not agreed on a contract before your current contract expires, so if you find yourself on one of these contracts, you should consider switching providers immediately.
Okay, so what is dual fuel and is it cheaper than separate tariffs?
There is also the option of having dual fuel, which is getting your gas and electricity from the same company, or separate tariffs where you get them from different companies.
The benefit of dual fuel is that sometimes you may be able to benefit from ‘dual fuel discounts’, like United Gas and Power who offers a discount to customers that choose to have both of their energy come from the same supplier.
Many choices are depending on the supplier you choose, which is why companies like Bulb who only offer one fixed tariff can be preferable for some businesses as it’s straightforward and easy to remember.
Now you’re ready to get a quote
In general, getting business energy quotes should be very easy, with some suppliers giving you quotes within minutes like Bulb and So Energy. The process of getting a quote does depend on which supplier you have chosen.
If you decide to get a quote online, this is what you will need.
- Number – Comparison companies and suppliers will often call you to give you your quotes.
- Businesses postcode – This is because the cost of energy is different depending on where in the UK your business is based.
- Your current supplier – So your new supplier can gather all the information they need, like your energy usage and details that you may not know.
- Time of the day that is best to call you
- Sometimes you will also be asked for your annual electricity and gas usage – But if you don’t know what this is, your current supplier should have that information, and they will share it with your new supplier.
- Your MPR (Gas) or MPAN (Electricity) – These are unique codes that your new supplier can check to make sure you are in good standing. This allows them to give you accurate billing and it will likely speed up your quote.
Why do they need all of that information? In short, it helps your new supplier to gather all the information they need about how much electricity or gas you use to give you business energy quotes, what your needs are and in some cases, it could make you eligible for introductory offers.
Once you have requested business energy quotes, depending on whether you have used a comparison site or you have gone directly to the source, you should receive quotes for multiple offers or a single tariff like with Bulb.
See the top 5 suppliers for new and existing businesses below.
How much can I save?
On average, medium-sized businesses in the UK pay 14.04p per kWh or £5013 a year on their energy, but according to some suppliers, that number could be reduced by up to 30%.
According to recent studies, as many as 40% of businesses have never switched providers! So there could be the opportunity to save hundreds or even thousands on your annual energy bills.
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Research potential suppliers
Below you can find the top 5 suppliers for new and existing businesses, to ensure that you have the best options at hand when getting business energy quotes that work for your company.
Top 5 Suppliers for New & Existing Businesses
A specialist energy company that caters primarily to smaller businesses, this energy provider prides itself on providing value, customer service, making sure that you have a fixed price for up to 3 years and holding themselves accountable for mistakes.
This company is a good option to switch your business energy supplier to if you are a smaller company because you can view and download your last 12 months of invoices for your records, and you can submit meter readings to make sure that you are getting an accurate bill.
✔No price increases for three years
✔They won’t automatically sign you up to another fixed agreement
✔Talk to customer service agents in the UK
Overall Trustpilot Score:
Catering to both small and large businesses, this energy company is focused on customer service, competitive pricing and providing a complete package for their customers, which is why they have created a contract and billing platform that is straightforward and easy to understand.
This provider is right to switch your business energy supplier to if you are a medium to large businesses because they provide you with an account manager, so if you have any questions or problems you know that you have a point of contact to get things fixed quickly.
✔Products that are suitable for small to large businesses
✔On some selected tariffs, you will not be charged any standing fees, meaning you only pay for the energy you use
✔Benefit from your account manager
✔Discounts on duel fuel packages
Overall Trustpilot Score:
D-Energi is an Ofgem accredited energy provider explicitly catering to the commercial market.
They have dedicated teams of people to help you switch providers, to look at rebates in case you feel that you may have been overcharged for your energy and they will work with you to improve your business become more energy efficient.
This is often a problem for micro businesses, so this provider might be the best option for you to switch your business energy supplier to if you fall into that category.
✔They offer green power solutions
✔If your meter has an issue, they will come and replace it for no charge
✔Competitive prices for new and existing customers
✔Excellent customer service based on reviews on Trustpilot
✔Fixed costs for electricity
Overall Trustpilot Score:
One of the newer players in the energy market is Bulb, a community-driven company that only has 100 employees and focuses on greener energy.
Another exciting benefit of switching to Bulb is that it only takes two minutes to get business energy quotes, thanks to a single tariff for all and helpful customer service when you have any questions.
This would be a good option for a new business that values customer service and a fixed rate.
✔Community focused, so questions can be asked and answered
✔A smaller, tight-knit company with increased internal communication
✔No exit fees
✔The Bulb App allows you to track your energy use, submit meter readings and check your balance
✔There is an option to sell your power to Bulb
Overall Trustpilot Score:
So Energy is a company that uses 100% renewable energy ranging from solar to tidal power and gives you a complete choice as to where you want your energy to come from.
Not only can you get business energy quotes in five minutes, but you can also rest assured that instead of flicking through pages of tariff choices, the company only offers one fixed rate tariff at any time.
If you are running a medium sized business, this simplicity might work best for your company when considering to switch your business energy supplier.
✔1 fixed tariff to choose from at any one time
✔Switch in less than 5 minutes
✔5* customer service based on Trustpilot reviews
✔Within the 10% cheapest fares in the UK
✔You can get in touch via Twitter or Facebook
Overall Trustpilot Score:
Switch your business energy supplier
Once you have received your business energy quotes, you can choose which one works for you and begin the switching process.
With all the steps there used to be to switch your business energy supplier, it may seem like a daunting process. Luckily, your new energy supplier will do all the work for you.
But so that you know, I’ll walk you through the whole process.
Taking So Energy as an example, their switching process is very straightforward and will only take you a few minutes to put into motion.
First, you will fill out an online form that tells them all the information they need to give you an accurate quote.
Once you have decided to move forward with that quote, So Energy will take over and tell your current supplier that you have requested to switch.
They will need a reading which they will ask for five days before you switch supply. Don’t worry; they will send you an email just to remind you.
According to their website, the process from start to finish will take around 21 days, and you can log into your account to keep track of what’s happening and the estimated date it will be completed.
Once everything is done, and you have been charged your first bill, So Energy will send this to your previous supplier so they can generate your final bill. This means that your last and first read should be the same so that you won’t be charged twice for the same energy.
You are free to change your mind and cancel your switch within 14 days of signing up without incurring any fees.
Are you ready to switch or compare energy suppliers? If you want to know more about your business energy check out the EnergySeek guides.