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Ultimate Guide To Setting Up Utilities For Your Rental Property

When you're renting it makes sense to try and cut back on your monthly bills. After all, every pound you save on energy or broadband is another pound towards the rent. So, finding the most cost-effective utility suppliers should be a priority. And it's amazing what deals you can find by shopping around. Particularly when it comes to energy costs. Switching suppliers really can save you a sizable amount of money every month.


At the start of your tenancy


You won't have any choice about energy suppliers at the start of your tenancy. All the services will be connected. This will include electricity, gas and water. But transfer all services to your name and take accurate meter readings. It's then up to you whether you continue with the current suppliers or switch to another company.


But first of all...


Can I switch energy suppliers?


In a word. Yes. Unless...


If your landlord pays the bills directly then no you can't switch energy suppliers. However, the vast majority of tenants in the UK will be responsible for paying their own bills. And if this is the case you do have the right to choose your own supplier.


What are the benefits of switching?


Changing your gas and electricity suppliers can make a big difference in the amount of money you pay in energy costs. Prices vary between suppliers and each will have different plans which may be suitable for you. Working out whether you'll be better off with a different supplier can be difficult. However, price comparison websites can take some of the mystery out of the process.


How to switch energy suppliers


Before you do anything check your tenancy agreement. Your landlord may have a preferred supplier. But this doesn't stop you from switching. However, you should notify your landlord you're switching suppliers. But if there's nothing in your contract about preferred suppliers you can proceed without notifying your landlord. Though you may have to restore the original supplier at the end of the tenancy.


As already mentioned, the easiest way to switch is by using a price comparison site. Keep an eye out for special deals. Many suppliers will offer preferential tariffs to new account holders. It's quick and easy to run a comparison but make sure you have a recent bill to hand. You'll need this to calculate your annual energy consumption. If you don't have a bill it's possible to fairly accurately predict your usage.


Once the comparison is completed you can choose your new supplier.  You will then be guided through the process of switching. Some websites will handle everything for you.


Rest assured if you do switch energy companies your energy supply will be unaffected. Your power won’t be cut off at any point.


A word about water


Unlike electricity and gas, you'll be unable to change your water supplier.  Water companies operate regionally so you have no choice from which you source your water.  However, the government regulates prices so you won't be worse off.


Finding affordable broadband


Another way to save money is to shop around for a new broadband deal. There are so many package deals available it's possible to find a real bargain. Packages can include broadband, phone and TV. But do think carefully about what you really need. Don't be tempted by a package deal if you only need broadband.


One of the best money saving tips we can give you is not to blindly renew your broadband deal when the contract is due for renewal. Many of us do this and can lose a significant amount of money by doing so. It usually pays to see what discounts different providers have for new customers. You'll often find a substantial saving.


Tenants can find their ideal property faster with MakeUrMove the online letting platform bringing landlords and tenants together.

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