Energy Advice Lines welcomes helping hand for businesses

The Energy Advice Line has welcomed moves by Ofgem to make it easier for business energy users to switch suppliers.

Julian Morgan, managing director of the price comparison, switching and advice service for energy consumers, said an estimated 1.6 million of the UK’s smallest firms would benefit from new rules to simplify bills and improve the information passed on to businesses.

“The regulator has announced a range of measures that will simplify the process of shopping around and make comparing energy prices easier, and this is hugely welcome,” Mr Morgan said.

“Businesses have struggled for years to make sense of their bills because suppliers have made them more complicated than they need to be. This has made it virtually impossible for firms to compare prices like-for-like and as a result, many firms haven’t bothered to shop around.

“The changes will now enable firms to make more accurate comparisons, because suppliers will be forced to include comprehensive information on bills to make this possible.”

Under the proposals announced by Ofgem earlier in the summer, business energy customers will be told the price of their current deal, the new rates they will be charged when this deal expires, as well as how much energy they use annually.

1.6 million SMEs will benefit from the new move made by OFGEM

Suppliers will also be forced to introduce a standard 30-day notice period so that firms will know exactly when to tell their supplier they wish to switch to another company.

“Under these plans, the smallest businesses will have all the information they need on their bill to easily shop around and compare prices,” Mr Morgan said.

“This is a huge step forward for the many business owners and decision makers who continue to place their energy arrangements in the too-hard basket because tariffs are too complex and information on bills inadequate.

“These new arrangements will put businesses in the best possible position to shop around, find the cheapest deals and switch at the appropriate time.”

The Energy Advice Line is one of the UK’s leading price comparison and switching services for business and domestic energy customers. It is also an advocate for energy market reform and has campaigned for a better deal for energy users, including calling for a ban on cold calling and changes to regulations to make it easier for all consumers to switch suppliers.

The service is completely independent and free. Consumers can quickly and simply search the market for the best available energy deals from an extensive panel of small and large energy suppliers. The service also offers a free advice line for business energy customers.

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