Rising energy prices – how to protect your business

What can you do to protect your business from rising energy prices and cut your bills down to size?

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4th November 2012 at 10:56 pm

In recent weeks, several of the major energy suppliers have announced that they will be putting up prices for their domestic energy customers. And while these price hikes have hit the headlines, business energy prices have being going up behind the scenes too. So what can you do to protect your business from rising energy prices and cut your bills down to size? uSwitchforBusiness has four pieces of advice which we think will help…

1. Relax (for now)
Yes, that’s right, relax. Business energy tariffs are fixed price – that means that you carry on paying the same prices until your contract ends, even if the energy suppliers announce price rises. What you do need to do is make sure that you know when your contract is due to end, so you can make sure that you’re ready to take evasive action and dodge an increase in your bills.

2. Shop around
About three months before your energy contract is due to end, start looking around for a new deal. It might sound like a long time, but you need to give quite a lot of notice to make sure your energy supplier doesn’t sign you up to a new 12 month contract. An energy broker (like uSwitchforBusiness) will be able to get you quotes from lots of different energy suppliers, so you can rest assured that the contract you choose is a good deal. (And there are still good deals to be had, we promise.)

3. Think long-term
If you’re really worried about how your business will cope with rising energy prices, you could sign up for a longer contract. Most businesses opt for one year contracts, but you can get contracts that fix your prices for as long as five years. There is a catch – the longer the contract, the higher the price tends to be, but then again, the longer the contract, the more prices are likely to rise and the more you’ll save by having locked-in your prices.

4. Be efficient
If energy prices are rising, one of the very best things you can do to make sure you don’t pay more is use less energy. Most businesses have a few bad habits when it comes to energy – leaving monitors on overnight, one member of staff tuning the heating on and the other opening a window etc – and taking steps to change them can make a difference to your bills. You can also think about bigger steps like new lighting, insulation or more efficient equipment and machinery.

So don’t let rising prices get you down – there are things you can do to make sure your business doesn’t suffer.

Jane Tchan

Jane Tchan is editor of SmallBizPod. She has more than 30 years of experience gained from working across a diverse range of industries, including tourism and leisure, retailing, sports sponsorship and food. During that time she has edited a variety of publications and online media http://www.smallbizpod.co.uk

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