Posted on November 21, 2017 at 10:30 am by BeeMyMinder
How to get the best deal on your energy bills
As with any household finance, utilities are a constant outgoing that can soon spiral out of control. However, we believe that everyone should be able to benefit from the best deal on their energy bills.
That’s why this month we’ve pooled together our top ways for you to do just that. If you think that we’ve missed anything out, then please do let us know in the comments at the end of this article.
Find out how much you actually use
When it comes to switching your energy provider, it’s important that you understand how much energy you’re actually using.
This is because if you’re able to provide a realistic estimate when you’re searching for quotes, the estimated monthly payment should roughly be what you’ll pay.
When you’re asked how much energy you use each year, check your annual statement from your current supplier and take note of:
- The name of the tariff(s) that you’re on
- How much gas and electricity you’ve used (in kilowatt-hours, kWh)
If you don’t have these figures, then it’s best to estimate your usage. Remember, at different times of year you’ll be using different amounts of energy.
Do your research
When you’re trying to get the best deal on your energy bills, it’s crucial that you do your research before signing up to any new tariff. However, most people stop researching once they’ve found a supplier who’s offering the best price.
There are several other factors you need to take into account, including:
- Minimum contract lengths
- Exit or termination fees
- Grace-periods if you’re transitioning from one provider to another
- Pricing history, including increases or decreases
- Customer service feedback
- Any reductions in price based on payment method
Understand the tariffs
With so many different options available, it’s important to understand what each tariff includes before you sign up.
Sometimes known as a “variable” tariff, this plan is usually the most expensive one an energy company has. The cost to you will go up and down every time the supplier changes their rates, and if you’ve never switched this is the tariff you’re most likely to be on.
In direct contrast, the fixed tariff is exactly what it says on the tin. The price you pay will be fixed for a specific term, usually one or two years. However, if you do choose this option, it’s important that you set an energy policy reminder for when the term comes to an end. This gives you the chance the compare the market for a better deal.
The tariff you agree to can often depend on what special offers the energy provider have running but make sure you fully understand the terms and conditions before signing on the dotted line.
Remember your renewal dates
When it comes to finding the best deal on your energy bills, setting an energy policy reminder is one of the easiest ways to save money. For example, if you’re benefitting from a special, introductory offer that runs out after your first year, chances are the fixed price will increase on your next payment.
Here at BeeMyMinder, we help our readers do just that. Our system allows you to set automatic text or email reminders for renewal dates, meaning you have plenty of time to compare the market for a better deal. You can find out how the system works here.
Change how you pay
Many energy suppliers will offer a discount if you pay by monthly direct debit. The total you pay each month is calculated by your energy supplier, based on how much energy you use in a year, and divided by 12.
At the same time, if you opt for a paperless service, you may also benefit from a reduced monthly cost. Companies are always looking for ways to cut their environmental impact, and will often incentivise their customers to manage their package online.
So there we have it, our top ways to get the best deal on your energy bills. What do you think? Are there any things you’ve done in the past that have saved you money?
We’d love to hear your thoughts, so please do let us know in the comments below. Alternatively, you can join the conversation over on Twitter and Facebook. We’re always sharing insights and advice on all things money saving, so come and join us.
Remember, if you’re struggling to take control of your finances, then BeeMyMinder can help. Our system enables you to upload unlimited policies, set renewal reminders and save money in the long-term. You can find out what else is included here.