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Save money on energy procurement

With practice profits under pressure, aim for cost reductions and good customer service when you review your energy supplier, says Udhi Silva.

Keep an eye on termination dates – these vary according to supplier (Picture: iStock)
Keep an eye on termination dates – these vary according to supplier (Picture: iStock)

Ensuring you have the best energy supplier is a difficult and time-consuming task, made even more difficult by the ever-changing energy market and the variety of contracts now available to practices.

My top tips for keeping energy costs down and getting better service from suppliers are:

  • Study suppliers' terms and conditions.
  • Check bills carefully.
  • Consider joining a buying group.

Terms and conditions

Contract termination notice periods vary according to supplier and not adhering to these can lead to you being rolled over into high rates for the following year. It is worth keeping an eye on termination dates and visiting internet procurement portals to research market pricing well before those dates.

Bills

From time to time you may receive estimated bills. Rather than simply paying these, it is better to keep your suppliers updated with actual meter readings, to ensure the practice is not paying under or over the odds.

Buying groups

Buying as part of a consortium will lower contract rates. As with most things, the more you buy, the lower the cost will be. Collaborating on utilities gives energy brokers and suppliers greater commitment and volume sales, and this pushes prices down.

Also important when buying energy is to review three core areas: how much historically the practice has paid for its utilities, your current contract position and whether there are tariffs to which you might potentially switch, with a view to saving money and obtaining rebates.

  • Udhi Silva is a director of ProCure Health Ltd

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