Regularly comparing prices for your energy contract is essential. It means you can take advantage of the best market conditions. But when should you do it? Find out about all the situations when it makes sense to review your gas or electricity contract, such as moving house or installing photovoltaic panels.

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The most obvious: when market prices are fluctuating

The energy market never runs smoothly. Gas and electricity are not shielded from price rises or falls. Their pricing is closely linked to production and consumption conditions, and these are rarely stable: a mild winter will mean lower gas consumption, leading to lower prices, an unexpected shut-down of a nuclear power station may cause an electricity shortage and so ultimately affect your bill, an attack on a gas field may disrupt the global gas market, and so on. In short, anything that can influence supply and demand will impact your energy contract prices.

Our advice: stay alert and follow the news regularly. If you hear of an unexpected fall in gas or electricity prices, consider doing a comparison between your current conditions and the market conditions. Also, ask yourself whether your conditions are suitable for a fixed price or a variable price.

If we take the example of the gas price at the end of 2019, the market conditions meant that households were receiving a particularly attractive price. In that case, opting for a fixed-price contact was the most advantageous option as it made it possible to freeze that price for the rest of the year.

The most pragmatic: when you move house

Moving house is often a good opportunity to review your energy contracts. This is especially true if the number of people in your household has changed since the last time you compared prices, if the size of your new house is different to your previous house, if you have changed region, and so on. In other words, it’s in your interest to review your gas or electricity contracts for your new home when you move house.

It is, of course, possible to transfer your current contract if you’re convinced that you’re already receiving the best terms, but it’s always a good idea to make sure. To do this, you can use an online tool such as Energyprice.be to do a quick comparison of your energy contracts. To make this task as easy as possible for you, you can also change supplier via our tool. Our advisers will take care of the administrative steps so that you can concentrate fully on the other aspects of your house move.

The most logical: after you have carried out works to improve the energy performance of your home

This is self-evident. Whether you have improved your home’s insulation or installed photovoltaic panels or an alternative heating system, the energy efficiency of your home will have changed. Your gas or electricity consumption will not be the same, so it makes sense to review your energy contract.

In the extreme case of carrying out works to make your house self-sufficient (in other words, not dependent on an energy distribution network), you can then simply cancel your contracts!

Note, also, that many suppliers offer terms specifically aimed at owners of photovoltaic panels. So it’s important to compare them so that you can find the package that’s most suitable for you.

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The most proactive: when you’re planning your annual budget

Managing the family finances is never an easy task. To reduce the risk of unforeseen events, it’s advisable to plan your major expense items annually in order to keep an overview of your financial situation.

We’ve noticed that it’s often in September, when the schools go back, that many people review their budgets. Are you planning to do any renovation work this year? How much should you allow for your transport costs? How much are your telephone, internet and television bills? Do you have the most advantageous contracts for your gas or electricity? To answer this question, you can carry out a check on a price comparison site.

To optimise your family’s financial budget, it’s essential to cut out any unnecessary expenses. To do this, we would encourage you reduce your energy bills by taking advantage of the promotions offered by the rival suppliers.

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The most sensible: compare once a year

Regardless of the market conditions or the energy performance of your home, in the end it’s essential to compare your energy contract prices once a year. The promotions you receive when you take out your contract generally end after a year. So we strongly advise you to check your prices at that point.

To help you remember to do a new comparison, we suggest that you add a reminder to your calendar. You can also make life easier for yourself by using specific events as a reference: the start of the school year (as mentioned above), the beginning of autumn, the summer holidays, etc.

Would you rather carry out an audit of your energy bill with the help of a professional? Our team of energy advisers can assist you free of charge and without obligation. Simply send us your bill by email (info@energyprice.be) and we will contact you to help you find the ideal supplier. You can also call us directly on 0800 37 369 between 09.00am and 18.00pm.

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