The article about gas and electricity utilities I wrote a couple of months ago was all about how crucial it is to get the dates of your utility contracts logged, to know when your Termination window is due. The article was written to help you ensure that your current supplier does not ‘Roll’ you directly into a new 1-year contract, one that you did not sign for and at what can be punishing rates. Avoiding that pain is being smart and organised.
This article is also about the smart utility buyer. Anyone who is not aware of the price rises in utilities is almost certainly a hermit. So, assuming that you are aware of the rises and you do the buying for your organisation, you know that you are as busy as anyone in business and you have to balance the demands of tasks to be done with the interruptions that are not expected, but which become urgent just because they are put in front of you. The difficult part for any buyer is to be motivated to do something early, when almost everything is already under at least some degree of pressure. Similarly, something you know little or nothing about is plain intimidating, so here is some information you probably do not have that may motivate you to think a little differently.
Question. Imagine that, just as an example, petrol prices zig-zag up and down but in general consistently rise, if you could buy your petrol at today’s price and lock in to that one price for a full 3 years … would you? If the answer is yes and you had to lock in to your petrol price before a given date, you would probably try to arrange that price as early as possible, to get the lowest price secured before the market rises on you. Every time this question is posed to a group of business people the answer is the same; ‘Of course we would take the lowest price, as early as possible and fix into that price for as long as possible. Prices only go up.’
Well you cannot do that for petrol, unfortunately … BUT … you can for your business electricity and gas contracts … AND … What is not common knowledge is that you can organise your electricity / gas contracts, not just months but up to a year ahead, secure a price at today’s rate and fix for up to 3 years for electricity or 5 years for gas. Don’t wait for your supplier to contact you just a few months before your current contract ends, look now or as early as you can. It pays dividends. Overlapping your contracts with one running to completion whilst the replacement is already set up and waiting to take its place, is the smart buyer’s way of keeping costs down.
One final reason to do it right now. It is summer time. Gas and electricity prices are closely linked and we have just had a really mild winter so there is loads of gas in storage that the suppliers have to get rid of. Prices are actually lower than 2013 but it will not last. In September the winter prices will start to feed into the pricing and the price climb will be on.
Quite probably you will not try to do this yourself, because you have forgotten everything you learned the last time you did all that and now it’s all too complicated again, you’re too busy, it gets put off etc … so … That single phone call? Call your broker and ask them to do it for you. Just for once, being an early bird and getting a small worm is a good thing.
For VMG Members.
Juliette Stone is one of the the Brokers at Full Power Utilities Ltd and personally deals with all VMG members. Their service is whole-of-market (all 26 suppliers), UK-wide and with no fee charged to the member, as the supplier pays them a commission. Each supplier pays them much the same, allowing them to be impartial. Customers include Dominos Pizza, Costa Coffee, BMW right through to factories, warehouses, restaurants and veterinary practices. Go to www.fullpowerutilities.com or call 020 8952 0125. Email: Juliette@fullpowerutilities
From each contract, new or renewal, organised by Full Power Utilities Ltd for a VMG member, VMG receives 25% of their income which is used for VMG member benefits.