Posts Tagged ‘suppliers’

Avoiding objections when switching energy supplies

Monday, March 2nd, 2015

The procedure when you change supplier for your electricity or gas, is that the new supplier will send a “transfer request” to the old supplier a short while before the date when the supply is to move across.

The old supplier should then just release the supply. Occasionally, however, they block the transfer, using a procedure that is called an Objection. No reason is given, and the new supplier is just told that they cannot take over the supply.

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Energy Contract Rollover – It Could Well Be You!

Monday, February 23rd, 2015

“98% of businesses do not know when their gas or electricity contracts renew. Failure to act could end up in your prices tripling!”

This frightening statistic reflects two things – (1) businesses pay little attention to their energy supplies, and (2) energy suppliers do not miss a trick if someone does not pay attention!

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5 Ways to Control Your Energy Costs

Wednesday, February 11th, 2015

Despite token price reductions by the “Big 6” recently the energy market remains volatile and prices can increase at any time. As such it is important to manage your energy supplies well, here are five things you can do to maintain control.

  • Know your contracts.

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More haste less spend

Monday, December 15th, 2014

What is the decision making process in your business? Do you like to think that you can react quickly and agree a course of action? We all like to think so, but what happens if you are busy in other aspects of your business? Do you stop and prioritise which issues you need to resolve first?

The renewal of your energy contract is time sensitive in many ways. The most obvious action that requires timing within your renewal process is in making sure you issue your termination notice at the right time. If you fail to terminate then you lose the ability to change supplier and potentially the chance to access the best deals for your circumstances. There is a cost to you in missing this action.

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Dealing with energy supplier objections

Thursday, December 11th, 2014

One of the main reasons why businesses struggle to switch their energy business or have failed to in the past is due to the objections raised by their incumbent supplier that prevents the switch from going ahead. Sometimes these objections lead to the switch not occurring as to do so becomes “more trouble than it is worth”.

Even though the raising of such objections can be seen as a purposeful obstruction by the incumbent it primarily comes down to three reasons – there is an amount outstanding on your account that needs to be paid before the switch can happen, you have failed to give the correct termination for your contract, or your new supplier has applied for the transfer on the wrong date.

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Npower to halt telesales unless it resolves billing issues

Thursday, June 26th, 2014

Ofgem has secured commitments from npower to take immediate action to put right its billing and complaints issues, alongside launching a wider investigation into customer service failings under Ofgem’s new Standards of Conduct.

Ofgem is requiring npower to resolve major billing issues no later than the end of August 2014 and publish monthly progress updates on its website. Failure to meet monthly targets will result in npower ceasing all proactive telesales to new customers until they are met. The parallel investigation into npower’s customer service failings is the first case to be opened under Ofgem’s new Standards of Conduct (SoC) and could lead to a financial penalty or redress payment if they are found to have broken rules.

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Energy suppliers to cut switch times

Monday, June 23rd, 2014

Energy users will be able to switch energy supplier within three days by the end of 2014 after an agreement between the regulator, Ofgem, and suppliers was reached.

As part of this agreement anyone who wants to switch must be given a two-week cooling-off period for the chance to change their mind, before the three-day process starts. New computer systems and smart meters should allow the process to be cut to a day by the end of 2018.

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Osborne declares £900m tax war on utilities – Source Utility Week

Friday, May 31st, 2013

29 May 2013

Osborne declares £900m tax war on utilities

The chancellor George Osborne has declared a £900m tax war on the utilities industry today stating some companies are “double claiming” and that he would be “changing the law” to stop the practice.
In a statement released by Osborne on behalf of The Treasury, he promised to introduce legislation to “confirm tax rules prevent businesses claiming capital allowances for costs met by other businesses”.
Osborne said the measures would have immediate effect and would be specifically targeting gas and electricity distribution companies from making new claims for historic costs “dating back decades that have already been paid by their business customers.”
He added: “The government is committed to competitive taxes to support growth in the UK. But it is also only right that companies pay the tax they owe.
“It is completely unacceptable that utility companies think they can claim for huge amounts of money, that business customers have already covered the cost for. By legislating today, we will prevent utility companies from making these claims, ensuring fairness for British taxpayers.”
The change in the tax system refers to when a business requires a new or improved gas or electricity supply when a utility company may insist the business meets some or all of the costs.
This fresh controversy surrounds claims that some, as yet unnamed, energy suppliers have been seeking to claim tax relief for the entire cost of putting in a new supply or upgrading and existing one, even though they have not met the full costs themselves.
The Treasury has now decided to clamp down on energy suppliers that have been making claims for tax relief on costs met by customers accusing utilities companies of exploiting a tax loophole, which it has now closed. It claims it has already turned down £50m worth of requests.
The Exchequer claims that this could result in “up to £900m” in lost tax as it continues to target businesses.
HMRC said: “The utility companies’ previous practice has been not to claim capital allowances for costs already covered by business customers.
“Recently, however, some gas and electricity distribution companies have attempted to change that and make new claims for past expenditure, which if they succeed would generate large windfall tax repayments and reductions for the companies concerned.
“New legislation confirms that these claims cannot now be made. HMRC will be robust in challenging those claims that have already been submitted.”
Draft legislation will be introduced today (29 May) and will be part of the current Finance Bill. Source: Utility Week

Ofgem’s £30 billion price controls come into effect

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

Ofgem’s ground-breaking new price controls come into effect this week, marking the start of around £30 billion investment in Britain’s energy infrastructure.
The final decisions on the price controls were taken by Ofgem in 2012 and were subsequently accepted by all companies. The price controls will run until 2021 and relate to the network companies operating Britain’s high voltage electricity grid and high and low pressure gas networks. Included in the network company plans is:
• around £7 billion earmarked for Scotland’s high voltage electricity network, creating around 1,500 jobs
• a £15.5 billion upgrade for the high voltage electricity network in England and Wales and the high pressure gas networks across Britain, creating around 7,000 jobs, mainly in the construction supply chain
• around £8.7 billion to ensure that Britain’s low pressure gas networks, which deliver gas to homes and businesses, remain safe and reliable.

Hannah Nixon, Ofgem’s Senior Partner for Distribution, said: “This week marks a very significant moment as it forms a key part of implementing the investment needed to protect our security of supply. Ofgem’s new RIIO price control framework delivers around £30 billion of this investment at a fair price to consumers. It also helps ensure Britain’s energy infrastructure will remain among the most reliable in the world.”

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Ofgem sets out its vision for fairer treatment for small businesses

Monday, March 25th, 2013

Ofgem’s proposed new standards of conduct for how suppliers should treat Britain’s smallest businesses are due to come into force from this summer. These substantial reforms support action Ofgem is also taking on clearer contracts, back-billing and on new powers to tackle misselling to businesses. Ofgem will also be reviewing whether or not automatic rollover of contracts for businesses should be banned altogether.

The new enforceable standards will require suppliers to treat firms, which typically spend up to £10,000 per fuel on gas and electricity, in an honest, transparent and professional way. This will apply to when suppliers are billing, contracting with and switching customers.

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