Managing Your Fuel Bills
- Know Your Supplier
- Getting the Best Deal – payment methods and tariffs
- Switching Supplier
Know Your Supplier
If you have a question or problem about the service provided by your supplier, always contact them first to discuss it. The contact details will be on your fuel bill or their website.
If you have recently moved and are unsure who supplies your gas and/or electricity, contact the following:
For electricity: 0845 270 9101 (Southern Scotland) or 0845 026 2554 (Northern Scotland)
For Gas: 0870 608 1524
Getting the Best Deal – payment methods and tariffs
It is worth checking that you are on the best tariff for you. Suppliers do offer a wide range of tariffs at different prices, and online or fixed rate tariffs often offer a cheaper deal.
You can also often save money simply by changing the way you pay for your electricity and gas.
Direct debit is one of the most cost-effective ways, often the cheapest way, to pay for your electricity and gas. Some companies offer both fixed and variable direct debits. With a variable direct debit you must provide monthly meter readings, often online, and your bill is adjusted so you pay for the actual energy used and not an estimate.
Regular payment schemes offer you the option to pay for fuel in equal amounts every week, fortnight or month. Payment book schemes can be more suitable for people without a bank account and can aid budgeting. However, you need to be able to travel to payment outlets like banks, the Post Office, PayZone or PayPoint. Not all suppliers offer this option, and it tends to be more expensive than direct debit.
Note: it is important to check that actual meter readings have been used. If your bill is based on estimated readings you may be greatly over or undercharged.
Prepayment Meters are operated by tokens, cards or keys that have to be ‘topped up’. A prepayment meter allows you to pay for fuel as you use it and can help prevent any debt building up on your account.
With a prepayment meter you may be at risk from self-disconnection ie having your electricity or gas cut off if you are unable to buy payment cards or charge up your key. You could also have the added expense and inconvenience of travelling to the charging outlet.
You might be able to save money by switching to a different energy supplier. Website comparison sites can help you decide and a list of approved websites is available. Check this out and get advice on the energy regulator’s website here.