“With commercial property rents rising again, it’s crucial that businesses find ways to trim their outgoings,” – Phil Foster, Love Energy Savings
Business owners who rent their premises are being urged to take greater control of their finances.
The call comes from commercial energy price comparison specialist Love Energy Savings, which says many renters could be paying over the odds for their gas and electricity because it isn’t crystal clear who supplies their energy in the tenancy agreement.
Its campaign to raise awareness follows a report from the British Chambers of Commerce and British Gas which showed that 27% of business owners who rent a space feel they have no influence over energy-efficiency improvements in their building.
Phil Foster, managing director at Love Energy Savings, said: “With commercial property rents rising again, it’s crucial that businesses find ways to trim their outgoings.
“Communication is key. Talk to your landlord, building manager and energy supplier at the earliest opportunity, and make sure you’re not getting a raw deal. Ask them if you can make energy-efficiency changes, and if they say no, find out why.”
“It’s not just inefficient buildings that are causing businesses to lose money unnecessarily.
Many commercial tenants assume they will be on the cheapest energy tariff when they move into a property, but this is rarely the case.
“Suppliers will generally roll over the previous tenant’s contract and it’s highly unlikely that this will be the best deal.
Foster is advising that business owners familiarise themselves with the terms of their tenancy agreement straight away.
He said: “If the tenant is responsible for the meter they can dictate the supplier, however, in a serviced office environment the landlord agrees the contracts and recharges the cost to the tenants.
“The landlord would be responsible for any unoccupied space and therefore it would be in everybody’s interest for them to obtain the best possible rates. As a rule, the agreed lease says who’s doing what with energy.
“There is generally a sub clause that states the landlord will make the best effort to secure a fair deal for their tenant.”
To help businesses to save even more money, Love Energy Savings has put together a guide specifically for commercial renters.