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Business energy rates v household energy rates

If you're used to switching household energy, you might think that switching business energy is as simple a process. But it's not. Each business energy contract is drawn up to meet the needs of each specific business. That's why it helps to have some expert help on hand when comparing deals. Here's all you need to know about the difference between business energy.

3 min read

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What’s the difference between business energy and domestic energy contracts?

When looking for a new gas and electricity contract, it is important to know exactly what you need from your next energy deal and supplier. This is because there are a wide variety of energy contacts available, all of which have been designed to cater to each user’s specific needs. For instance, if you use most of your electricity during the night, an Economy 7 or Economy 10 tariff might suit you best, or if you have a property that’s vacant for much of the year, a no-standing charge deal could save you money.

If you run a business and you’re used to switching domestic energy deals, it’s also worth knowing that business and domestic energy rates and deals are different, and switching to a new commercial energy deal can take a lot more time and effort.

There are various differences between business energy and domestic energy contracts that you need to be aware of. Firstly, unlike domestic energy contracts which you can leave at virtually any time, you are only able to exit a business energy contract if you are at the end of your current one.

Although most domestic energy deals will charge an exit fee for ending your deal early, business energy deals don’t usually offer this get-out, meaning that once you’ve signed up, you’re locked in for the duration.

So, if you are looking for a new business energy contract, you must first ensure you are nearing the end of your existing deal.

Secondly, you can’t enter a business energy deal without first speaking to someone at the energy company you’re switching to. This is because energy contract tariffs depend on a number of factors related to your business, including size, location and consumption habits.

Unlike domestic contracts that can be set up online in a few clicks of your mouse, businesses are required to call up an energy supplier in order to provide them with information that will enable them to provide you with a more accurate quote.

If you run your business from home but would like to access a business energy deal, you will need to use more than 50% of your consumption for your business. This may initially sound like a lot of energy, but it includes heating and lighting during your office hours. So, if your office hours are 8 hours per day from Monday to Friday, you’ll most likely be eligible for a business energy deal.

It’s important to remember energy prices vary depending on the size of your business, with large businesses often given a lower unit energy price than small businesses. This is simply because they require more energy, so energy providers want their custom. But even small companies can benefit from a business energy deal, as you’ll often find business energy tariffs provide better rates than domestic deals.

How does comparing business energy differ from comparing domestic energy?

There are various differences you must be aware of when looking to compare business vs domestic energy tariffs, from rates to contract lengths to whether you need a dual fuel contract, business and domestic energy contracts can often vary a lot from one another.

One major difference you need to know is that you cannot enter a business energy contract online. Whilst domestic energy contracts can be entered and left relatively easily and usually online, business energy contracts require a little more work.

Because energy companies require more information from you before they are able to provide your business with an accurate quote, it’s unlikely you’ll be able to switch business energy supplier online.

Instead, you’ll need to contact an energy supplier and provide them with details regarding your business. This includes:

  • How much energy you use
  • What time of day or night your business functions
  • The industry your business is a part of
  • Your business location
  • How many sites you require energy for

Or, to save time and hassle, you can hand those details over to the switching team and uSwitchforBusiness, and we’ll compare rates to find you the best gas and electricity deal for business.

It’s also worth noting that business users can take advantage of longer contract lengths, the possibility of discounted energy rates but, unlike with domestic deals, commercial energy contracts don’t offer dual fuel options, so you’ll need to arrange separate gas and electricity contracts.

As businesses generally use more energy, they are granted greater choice over the intricacies of their deals. This gives business owners plenty of scope to find the perfect energy deal for their requirements. It also makes finding the best deal a little more difficult. That’s why we recommend using our expert guidance when switching business energy supplier.

How to switch business energy supplier

As mentioned, switching business energy supplier can be slightly more complicated than changing domestic energy contracts. Firstly, you can only switch to a new business energy supplier when your contract with your existing contract is at an end. Therefore, you should only begin to look for a new business energy supplier if you have entered what is referred to as the ‘contract renewal window’.

This period usually begins 3-6 months before the end of your current contract. If you are in this window then you can begin to look at getting a new deal. The next step is to contact energy experts like uSwitchforBusiness. This is because our energy experts can quickly use your information to compile a list of the best, most suited business energy contracts for your business.

Not only does this eliminate the time and effort needed to conduct such a search, but it also gives you important peace-of-mind knowing that the quotes you are comparing are the very best available.

To see how much could save buy switching business gas and electricity supplier, give our team a call now on 0800 188 4930.

What’s the difference between business energy and domestic energy contracts?
How does comparing business energy differ from comparing domestic energy?
How to switch business energy supplier

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