Save money on utility bills throughout the energy crisis
RMI Utilities explain the global reasons behind the unprecedented changes to the energy market, and give advice on how to save money on your energy bills.
The wholesale energy market has seen unprecedented change since early 2020. During this year, wholesale energy prices dropped to almost record lows during the pandemic as energy demand dropped dramatically globally.
In contrast, 2021 saw a range of events which built up pressure on wholesale prices. This included the Suez Canal blockage, fires at electricity interconnectors, issues at gas production plants, low levels of gas storage, the Beast from the East II, a hotter summer than expected, high demand for LNG tankers, and cracks identified at French nuclear plants.
Late December 2021 saw prices reach record highs as a result, with the French nuclear cracks adding pressure onto a market which was reeling from the events of the year and the winter temperatures driving up heating demand.
This came to a head with the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, which caused wholesale costs to reach new highs due to geopolitical uncertainty and concerns over security of EU gas supplies. Wholesale prices have remained high even with geopolitical tension falling somewhat due to continued fears of Russia cutting EU gas supplies – with Poland, Bulgaria, and Finland all being cut to date. Should Germany be cut off from Russian gas, this will cause an enormous shock in markets and prices will spike.
Industry sentiment is that wholesale energy prices will remain high for the next few years as alternatives to Russian gas are sought. Limited capacity globally will keep prices high as LNG tankers will have many bidders, pushing prices of cargoes upwards. New infrastructure will take time to design, build, test and approve – therefore, there will be limited benefit in the short-term.
There are steps that can be taken, and RMI Utilities advise the following:
- Make sure you are on a fixed tariff – deemed/out of contract costs have reached new highs in recent months, so this can be a quick way to make a large saving.
- When securing a new contract do not take the first offer given. Consider several suppliers and do not just renew with the current supplier unless they are the best. There are still deals to be had, even in the current market.
- If you do not have a smart meter, make sure to take readings on a regular basis and submit these to the supplier. This will stop you from potentially being charged at a higher rate in the future.
- Do not leave your renewal to the last minute. The market is too volatile, and you need to leave yourself enough time to avoid any negative movement. Agree 12-18 months in advance where possible.
RMI Utilities is included within IGA membership. Should you require any further support, they can:
- Cut costs and save time by researching the entire market on your behalf
- Avoid you getting caught on ‘roll over’ or expensive utility contracts
- Ensure you are not ‘locked in’ high price contracts
- Align multiple supplies to one renewal date to ease future administration
- Advise on Change of Tenancy, new meter installations, and supplier objections
- Provide access to energy efficiency products and services
- Give assistance on all aspects of your telecoms including broadband, mobiles, and phone systems
Please call the IGA Member Helpline on 01788 225 908 or email to enquire.