As the Government rolls out smart meters across Britain, you need to know about the impact they could really have on your small business. Here's our assessment of the situation.
The smart meter initiative is being rolled out across Britain because, in principle, it is a good idea. Installing smart meters will give business consumers and energy suppliers unprecedented levels of information about their energy usage and reveal ways to bring that usage down.
The roll-out is a positive move towards more accurate billing, which has the potential to reduce our impact on the environment and bring down energy bills.
If we fast-forward to 2020 when all small businesses have their smart meters up and running, it should be working nicely. But until then, there may be a few bumps in the road.
The smart meter roll-out doesn't begin officially until 2014 and must be completed, by law, by 2020. But, due to the lack of coordination surrounding the roll-out, many suppliers have started to offer their business customers smart meters right now.
For business customers who have already had smart meters installed, we've seen a big increase in failed switch attempts due to non-compatibility issues. This means that, while your smart meter works with your current energy supplier, other suppliers may not be able to supply your meter. And even if theycansupply your meter, they may not be able to support its 'smart' features - rendering it a 'dumb' meter once again.
Furthermore, some energy suppliers are adding a daily standing charge to smart meter tariffs, which ranges from 20 pence to 60 pence per day (£73 to £219 per year).
If you already have a smart meter or you think you'd like to get one installed, here are our top five tips to get the most out of your meter:
James is an online content creator at Make It Cheaper. Having previously created a variety of content for a number of websites and media outlets, James focuses on making it easy for SME owners to find interesting and engaging content - as well as useful guides and online tools.You can email James at email@example.com
We've received your request and one of our saving experts will be in touch within the next five minutes.
We're happy to confirm we've received your request for a call. Our phone lines are open from 9am - 5.30pm, Monday - Friday, so we'll be in touch at the next possible opportunity.
Whether you're looking to have a chat about your energy, insurance, telecoms or merchant services, having some useful information to hand when we call can help to speed up the process of comparing prices and switching. This could be something like a recent bill or policy document.
Speak soon - we're looking forward to it!