Coronavirus lockdown has resulted in the temporary suspension of many businesses (both small and large) or at least, reduced operations. Does this mean that companies still have to pay their energy bills?
The simple answer is yes. All business utility and energy bills are expected to be paid as normal including standing charges.
The good news is: your business is likely to be using less energy, which will reduce your energy costs! – Especially if no one is at work. (Just make sure all of your energy-sapping equipment is turned off at the mains, and turn off your heating!)
What if your small business is struggling to stay solvent and paying your bills is threatening the survivability of your company? – Good question.
Although there’s no financial help available for energy bills, suppliers have agreed with the government that no meters will be cut off during the coronavirus pandemic. As a business owner, your best course of action is to your supplier as soon as possible to explain the situation and work out an arrangement, which could include either of the following:
- Debt repayments being reassessed, which could see them paused or cut.
- Bill payments being reassessed, which could see them paused or cut.
It’s worth noting that whilst your energy supply might not be cut off during lockdown, if you don’t pay your bills you will fall into debt with your supplier – and steps can be take n to reclaim the debt (like put in a pre-payment meter).
There are a couple of things you can do to avoid falling into debt with your provider:
- Change supplier if you can get a better deal elsewhere. Just remember:
- If you’ve been in debt with your supplier for more than 28 days, you won’t be able to switch until the debt is paid off.
- You won’t be able to compare business energy deals until your current deal enters its switching window, which is usually between one and six months before its end date.
- Submit a meter reading. If you still have access to your business premises, and it’s safe to do so, you should provide a gas or electricity meter reading online. This way, if your business is closed, you’ll receive an accurate bill which will be lower because you’re using less energy. If your business is open, but on reduced operations, you’ll only pay for the energy you’re using.
For all your energy related questions, feel free to contact the CH Systems team on 0208 302 8149 or firstname.lastname@example.org.