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What to do if your landlord supplies your energy


Can you switch suppliers if your landlord supplies your business energy?

If you own your business premises, switching business energy providers is simple.  However, for those in leased properties, the situation can be more complicated.

If you’re a tenant in a leased property, your energy will be set up in one of two ways:

  • You pay your energy bills directly to the supplier.
  • You pay your landlord for your energy, and they pass the cost on to you.

Both setups can be frustrating and leave tenants feeling like their energy bills are out of their hands.

1. You pay your energy bills directly to your supplier

Under Ofgem rules, you have every right to switch your energy provider, and your landlord cannot stop you from switching. However, make sure that you check your contract for mentions of a ‘preferred’ or ‘default’ supplier.

A default supplier is the supplier that your landlord would prefer that you use. If your landlord has a default supplier, this should be mentioned in your contract; if you haven’t signed your contract, you can try to renegotiate this clause. However, even if you have already signed your contract, or cannot renegotiate, your landlord still cannot prevent you from switching suppliers as long as you are paying the supplier directly. If you want to go ahead and switch your energy supplier, double check the small print to find out if you have to notify your landlord of the change.

2. Your landlord pays your energy bills and invoices you for them or includes the cost in your rent

If your landlord pays your energy bills, you may not even know who your supplier is, let alone whether you’re paying over the odds. If you can get your hands on information about your current usage and energy bills then you can find a quote and find out if you’ve been overpaying. If not, it’s still worth calling a company such as ourselves for a ballpark figure. 

Under the Electricity and Gas (Internal Markets) Regulations 2011, a tenant has the right to request a different energy supplier, even if they are in a multi-tenanted building. Your landlord must respond to your request within 10 days, either accepting your request or explaining why they are objecting.

If you are one of many businesses in a large complex, your landlord may bulk buy energy, allowing them to fix competitive prices. In this case they may object to your request due to the financial burden it would place on them. Landlords can also reject a request if the cabling in your building doesn’t have enough capacity.  

If you feel that your landlord is unreasonably obstructing you from changing energy suppliers you should try to contact them and attempt to resolve the situation. If you do not feel that the situation has been resolved in eight weeks, you can contact the Ombudsman.

If you are a tenant and are unsure about your energy usage or energy rights, give us a call on 0800 411 8830.

 

 

 

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Excellent, 9.7 / 10

Very easy

"Very easy. Bea Luseni very efficient & knowledgeable."

This review was posted by Alan Duffy on the 31st of March 2017

Super helpful and easy to work with

"Recommend this company in a heartbeat - Nicole Borneuf was super easy to talk to, was not pushy in the slightest, very helpful and replied with all my questions very professionally and did all she could to help. I had to deal with a few companies to sort my business energy out, all but Nicole were too pushy for my liking and I refused to follow through with them. Thank Nicole - you are a credit to your company, thank you for making the stressful energy change so easy."

This review was posted by Mia Drew on the 29th of March 2017

An Extremely Competent Company

"Switch my business has not only helped my SME secure a good energy deal for the second year running but Jessica swiftly found a alternative supplier for me when I was let down on the day of switching by the new contractual provider I had chosen some 4 months previously. Being suddenly out of contract and without provider is everyone's energy nightmare. Greatest thanks."

This review was posted by S McMillan on the 29th of March 2017

Helpful, friendly and we saved lots of money!

"Jessica Purnell was helpful and friendly, she made the whole process easy and simple AND we saved lots of money thanks Jess"

This review was posted by Melanie Baker on the 23rd of March 2017

Quick & Easy

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This review was posted by Amanda Brown on the 21st of March 2017