How Do I Switch My Business Energy Supplier | Compare the Market

How do I switch my business energy supplier?

How do I switch my business energy supplier?

If you run a business, you need to keep costs in check. But do you know how much you’re paying for your energy supply? If it’s been a while since you checked your electricity contract, you might be able to save money by switching.

Mubina Pirmohamed From the Energy team
4
minute read
posted

Can I switch supplier at any time?

Yes, but depending on your contract, you might be hit with a hefty penalty charge.

Most energy contracts for businesses run for 1-3 years, with a fixed unit cost. If you’re moving location or have found a better deal elsewhere, you’ll typically have to pay to get out of your contract. It’s important to factor in the cancellation fee when comparing deals to make sure opting out early really is the cheaper option. 

Can I switch supplier at any time?

You’ll usually be given a 'switching window', where getting out of your contract is easier. This varies with supplier, and can be anywhere between 30 days and four months before the contract end date. It's worth checking your contract or speaking to your supplier to confirm how long your switching window is so you can decide what to do in a timely way. You may also need to give your supplier notice, so check how long this is too.

Read more on Ofgem rules for energy contracts for micro businesses.

What happens if I don't switch when my business contract ends?

If your contract ends, you'll usually simply be switched over to your supplier’s out-of-contract rates. These can be much higher and can result in up to a 50% increase on energy prices. As this can be beneficial for suppliers, there's very little incentive for them to suggest you move rates.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) found that 45% of microbusinesses (broadly speaking, those with under 10 employees) were stuck on their suppliers’ most expensive default tariff. They were collectively paying around £180 million a year more than they would in a more competitive market.

Subsequent to this finding, rules have changed for microbusinesses so that suppliers: 

  • can't automatically impose expensive rollover contracts and rollover contracts can only be a maximum of one year
  • have to reduce the notice period required from 90 days to 30 days
  • must advise microbusinesses about how their current tariff compares with the new prices and show annual consumption on their renewal letters
  • have to make comparing and switching easier by publishing prices for commercial customers online

Get advice from Ofgem on understanding energy contracts for businesses.

Can businesses get dual fuel energy deals?

For domestic energy, you can bundle your gas and electricity together with one supplier to save money and make managing bills easier. This is known as a dual fuel tariff. You can do the same with your business energy as well, although we only compare gas and electricity pricing individually, so bear this mind when looking at costs.

Can businesses get dual fuel energy deals?

What do I need before comparing business energy?

Before you start comparing energy suppliers for business, it’s helpful to have your contract or a recent bill to hand. That way you’ve got a note of how much you currently spend, and how much of a saving you could be making. 

We’ll ask for some simple details, including:

  • where your business is based?
  • who is your current business supplier?
  • what is your supply type?
  • what are your meter numbers?

Not sure what your meter numbers are? You’ll find these on your bill or meter. MPAN is the Meter Point Administration Number for electricity, and MPRN is the Meter Point Reference Number for gas.

See understanding your energy bill.

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