Nowadays, businesses are faced with a myriad of challenges. Most of these challenges revolve around the cost of doing business. That’s why you see most companies closing their business. Like any other business, an energy supplier can cease trading. As a customer, you don’t have to worry. This is because you are protected by law. Ofgem protects you as a customer. It’s important to find out when your energy suppliers ceased trading. Take the following key steps if your supplier ceases trading.
Check Meter Reading
The first thing you should do is check your meter reading. If possible, try canceling any Direct Debits as well. But you can still choose to wait until you find a new energy deal before canceling.
Ofgem’s safety net stipulates that a new supplier should be automatically appointed should your current provider stop trading. In most cases, this announcement will be made within 72 hours and the appointment will be done within 2 weeks. Before trying to make an energy switch, it’s better to wait until a new provider is appointed.
Once you’re contacted by your new provider, you’ll need to negotiate another energy deal. Don’t be in a hurry to accept their first offer. This could be an excellent opportunity for you to shop around for a better contract and switch. At this point, the supplier won’t charge you any exit fees. Talk to your energy consultant to see if you can find cheaper rates for your business energy.
How Long You Should Wait
If your energy provider quits trading, Ofgem should appoint a new provider within 14 days. To ensure that you have switched to a more competitive deal, the regulator normally takes the old supplier’s contract through a rigorous bidding process. And once this is completed, it’ll pick the best company for your business needs.
If your smart meter isn’t compatible with your new provider, it’ll still function as a regular meter. Its smart functionality will be disabled and it’ll start working as a normal meter. Ofgem will send detailed information about your new supplier via their website, as well as, social media channels. The provider will then get in touch with you to negotiate a new contract.
What If the Supplier Quits?
If your current supplier stops trading, then your energy deal will be automatically terminated. And once a new supplier is appointed, you’ll be moved to a deemed contract. This implies that you’ll be at a higher rate than you were previously.
The reason why these rates are costlier is that the supplier is put on greater risk. At this point, your new supplier can’t be certain that you’re going to be their customer. They can’t also be sure about how you’ll be managing your monthly payments.
What Will Happen to Debts?
Do you owe your previous supplier any debts? If so, then you need to repay them before making a switch. If Ofgem discovers that you have a debt, it’ll automatically block your switch. But if your new supplier agrees to take on the debt, you must be ready to discuss a repayment plan with them.
On the other hand, if an administrator decides to take on your debt, they’ll be collecting monthly payments on behalf of the old supplier. Whichever method you choose, you should always strive to negotiate a reasonable repayment plan.
What to Expect
As you wait for Ofgem to assign you a new supplier, you can download previous bills to assess your energy consumption. Check your meter readings and take photos of them. When your new provider contacts you, they’ll want to know your payment history, as well as, your credit balance.
Record your account balance and have your payment record at hand. This will make it easier for you to convince your new supplier that you’re a responsible customer.
If you’ve unresolved complaints, then be sure to raise them with your new provider. This may include billing and account balance complaints. But this doesn’t mean that your new supplier is obliged to deal with unresolved complaints.
Why Do They Go Bust?
Any energy provider can go bust. Several factors can cause suppliers to stop trading. And these include:
Increased Wholesale Prices
These are the expenses that suppliers incur to purchase the energy they sell to you. Certain providers set their selling prices low to attract new customers. But when wholesale prices suddenly rise, they end up losing money on those cheap fixed-rate energy contracts.
Government charges levies to encourage the consumption of green energy. If a supplier fails to pay these levies, they’ll be fined. And this can quickly put them out of business. Other reasons for business closure include gas shortages, increased demand for gas and electricity, as well as, low winds.
If your energy provider ceases trading, Ofgem will ensure that you find a new supplier immediately. Once you realize that your supplier has gone bust, simply take your latest meter reading and don’t try making a switch.
Wait until Ofgem appoints a new provider. Your energy supply won’t be disrupted. Through Ofgem’s safety net, your supply will always be protected. Once the new supplier is identified, you’ll be notified immediately. When your new provider contacts you, request to be moved to their cheapest tariff. Then, continue shopping around for a different supplier if you wish to. This will help avoid paying exit fees.
The supplier will let you know about your account balance and how they intend to manage it. If there are any credit refunds, you’ll be notified about them. So, don’t be quick to switch suppliers. Be patient until Ofgem finds a new provider before trying to make a switch.
Has your supplier stopped trading? Don’t worry. Your energy supply won’t be disrupted. With Ofgem’s safety net, you can rest assured that you’ll continue receiving your gas and electricity. Record the meter readings. Shop around for a new supplier. Embrace patience. Wait for action from Ofgem. Above are simple tips to help you stay safe in case