A Look at Gas and Electricity Coverage: Packages and Providers
Gas and electricity bills represent a significant portion of the monthly expenditures of any household in the United Kingdom. As rates seem to be on the rise for both, it is a good idea to take a quick look at the basics of these plans as well as what to look out for when choosing the best deal. Finally, we will list a handful of the top providers as well as some of the turnkey solutions that each has to offer. This article could very well save you a great deal of money!
Gas and Electricity: The Basics
We should first make it a point to note that unlike other services such as broadband access or mobile phones, there are relatively few choices when it comes to gas and electricity providers. Furthermore, different regions of the United Kingdom may very well be subject to different services and firms.
Both gas and electricity are supplied to individual businesses and households via mains. The tariffs are thereafter calculated based upon your monthly consumption (as well as a fixed minimal rate to maintain infrastructure and service). However, not all companies charge the same tariffs. If you are concerned about your gas or electric bills, it is wise to compare at least three different firms. So, what should you look out for?
Factors to Keep in Mind
Providers will tend to offer either fixed yearly tariffs which will fluctuate. Fixed rates will generally apply to a certain usage limit each month. If you exceed this limit, you will obviously be charged an additional amount. So, fixed versus variable tariffs are the first major consideration.
Secondly, what is the length of the contract? The majority of gas and electricity firms will ratify a contract on an annual basis. However, some could instead offer longer lengths such as 18 or 24 months. The main benefit in these cases is that your monthly consumption tariffs tend to be slightly lower; ideal if you plan on sticking with a specific company for longer periods of time.
The Top UK Gas and Electricity Providers
The top five electricity and gas providers in the United Kingdom are listed as:
- British Gas
- EDF Energy
- N Power
British gas offers excellent levels of customer service as well as fixed rates until either November of 2017 or 2018. Additionally, British Gas provides a programme known as HomeEnergy Free Time (free service for either Saturday or Sunday.
EDF Energy provides online-only services in terms of bill payments and like British Gas, “price freezes” are included until October of 2017 or July of 2018 (depending upon the chosen plan).
E.ON is one of the largest gas and electricity companies and it provides a number of unique services. These include Fixed two-year tariffs, paperless billing and pre-paid electrical meters.
N Power provides fixed prices until October 2018 (potentially) as well as online billing and excellent levels of customer service.