Are you thinking about starting your own business in the health and fitness industry? If so, managing your costs and cash flow is essential. Energy bills often get ignored, but they can be a big expense in your industry, so it’s important to keep them as low as possible and plan for price rises.
The results from Energy Forecaster’s first quarterly Business Energy Barometer highlighted that 90% of businesses (including those in the health and fitness industry) are worried about what will happen if the yearly price rises of 25% carry on. They believe it could have terrible effects on their future and one in 12 believes it may lead to their business going bust. In the past, energy hasn’t been high up on many businesses’ list of priorities, but many are starting to take notice now that price rises mean it accounts for an average 0.51% of turnover.
Here are some smart tips from our energy experts to help you keep you bills down:
1) Ensure you don’t end up paying out-of-contract rates by sorting out an energy contract as a priority. If you don’t negotiate a deal, you’ll pay out-of-contract rates, which are often twice as much as the normal contract rate.
2) Assume that your energy bills will rise. 15% rises are quite normal over the course of a year, so take this into consideration when you are forecasting or drawing up business plans. You should also think about factors which may affect your consumption, such as the growth of your business, hiring more staff or installing new equipment and machinery.
3) Make energy-saving changes to your place of work. It may be possible to reduce your energy bills by making a small investment upfront. Take a look at our business energy efficiency guide for more information.
4) Keep a track of when your energy contract is due expire. A lot of energy suppliers operate automatically renewing contracts, meaning that if you miss your contract end date, you could be put onto a new tariff for another 12 months which may not be the best value for money.
5) Consider taking on a longer contract. This could protect you from price rises for the duration of the contract and, at present, unit rates are comparatively low, so now could be a good time to lock-in to a good value contract. If you are intending to make changes to your business that affect your consumption levels be cautious before signing a long-term contract as you may want the flexibility to change to another contract in the future.
6) Make sure you research the market before signing a contract. You may like to consider working with an independent energy broker, such as our parent company Business Juice. They can compare the market for you and collect quotes from lots of suppliers, saving you time.