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New Business Electricity – A Guide for Startups


Running your own start-up is an exciting prospect, but we’d guess you probably haven’t thought too much about your new business electricity needs. It’s not the most glamorous of concerns but knowing the ins-and-outs of electricity can have a real impact on your outgoings. And while it is worthwhile to compare business electricity online, there are some things you need to know beforehand.

What type of electricity tariffs are available for my business?

Electricity tariffs are not the same as domestic policies. When choosing a household tariff, you are offered a standardised package. With new business electricity, energy providers cater specific deals for your business size, type and needs. The first thing you’ll need to consider is what type of tariff will get you the best business electricity price.

Fixed Rate Tariff:

The most popular business electricity deal, a fixed rate tariff charges you the same unit rate for the entire contract. This is great for helping you budget as it provides a stress-free, no-change approach to energy supply. It doesn’t mean your bill will stay the same, just that your unit cost will remain the same. How much you pay will depend only on how much energy you use.

Variable Rate Tariff:

Throughout the duration of a variable rate contract, the unit cost you pay for every kWh of electricity will increase or decrease depending on market forces. If demand or the wholesale cost of energy increases, so will your unit cost. But if the market is favourable, your bill could end up at a lower price.

Flexible Contract:

If you don’t want the restrictions of a fixed rate or variable rate tariff, a flexible contract can allow you to switch supplier with just 30 days’ notice. With fixed and variable, you usually have to wait at least six months before you’re able to switch.

Deemed Rate Tariff:

If you don’t agree on a new contract before your current plan ends, you’ll be placed on a deemed rate tariff, which basically means inflated prices. Avoid a deemed rate tariff by checking when your contract ends. If you do find yourself on a deemed rate contract, don’t worry, you normally only need to give 28 days’ notice to switch.

How much should I be paying for business electricity?

It’s beneficial to compare business electricity online, however before you do, it’s probably worth knowing what you should be paying beforehand. This way, you’ll at least have some information on what constitutes a fair business electricity deal before you sign the dotted line. .

That said, businesses range massively in their energy consumption, so looking at average annual energy prices will not really help. Pay attention to the unit cost and standing charge. You can find these on the breakdown of your bill and should use them to make accurate electricity comparisons. The table below is a good guide to seeing how much you should be paying for business electricity.

Micro Business:

Average annual usage: 5000 - 15,000 (kWh)

Average Unit Cost: 13 - 13.5p

Standing Charge: 26 - 30p

Annual electricity price: £650 - £1,800

Small Business:

Average annual usage: 15000 - 30,000 (kWh)

Average Unit Cost: 11.8 - 13p

Standing Charge: 24 - 26p

Annual electricity price: £1,900 – £2,900

Medium Business:

Average annual usage: 30,000 - 50,000 (kWh)

Average Unit Cost: 11.3 - 11.8p

Standing Charge: 21 - 23p

Annual electricity price: £3000 - £5,000.

Hopefully its now clear how important it is to consider new business electricity prices. The next question is how can you bag the best deal? It takes a lot of legwork to compare new business electricity deals on a case-by-case basis, therefore, an online energy price comparison is your best bet. In just a few simple steps, you can be on your way to a better deal. Choose a price comparison by searching online and let them find you the best business electricity prices.

How to compare business electricity online

The easiest way to cut your business electricity bills is by running frequent energy price comparisons. However, it’s not the only way to get the best business electricity price.

Energy efficiency – how well your business manages its energy consumption – can have a real impact on the price your new business will pay for its energy. It’s important to inspire a culture of efficiency from the very start. What’s more, while waiting for your renewal window to open, working more efficiently is the only way to cut your business energy costs. But what is an energy efficient culture? And most importantly, what does it entail? There’s no end to what you can do to cut your business energy consumption, however here are a few top tips:

How can I cut my business electricity bills?

Business Energy Audit:

For business owners, the word ‘audit’ is one they could do without. However, when it comes to business electricity rates, it’s the kind of word that’s going to help you save. By carrying out a business energy audit, you can find out where you waste energy, and most importantly, how to make the change. What’s more, plenty of energy providers will offer you a free energy audit as part of your tariff.

Turn off unused appliances:

It sounds incredibly obvious, but the number of businesses with a ‘standby’ culture, as opposed to a ‘shutdown’ culture, is shocking. Get your staff on board from the start and make sure when appliances aren’t being used, they’re fully turned off. This ranges from lighting through to computers and photocopiers. To put this into perspective, a computer left in standby mode overnight will use almost the same amount of power as it uses throughout the day.

Energy efficient appliances:

Invest in appliances which are energy efficient. A quick and easy change you can make is the lightbulbs you use. By sticking to traditional bulbs, you will use ten times more energy than you would with an efficient LED alternative.

However, if you feel you have already maximised your energy efficiency and would like to cut your costs further, call our team of business energy advisers today.

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