pylonCredit: Public domain

One of the first things you should do when you are moving into a commercial property is to inform the existing supplier of Electricity to those premises that you are the new owner or tenant. This is something you should do as soon as you can.

One problem you may face with this is that you may not know who the current supplier is. Fortunately, this is fairly easy to find out. All you have to do is discover who the Electricity Distributor is for your geographical region and then contact them. They can then let you know who your specific supplier is.

These Electricity Distributors all have websites and provide enquiry facilities on these sites. You will either get an immediate answer to your enquiry, or will receive an e-mail giving you both your supplier and your MPAN (Meter Point Administrative Number). The MPAN is a reference number specific to your Electricity Meter and not to be confused with either an Account Number or the Meter Serial Number.

It is important to know your MPAN number as this is a number familiar to all Electricity Suppliers and is the easiest way for them to find out just where your Meter is located geographically and what specific types of rates apply to it. They will be able to find your details on the nationally maintained data base called Ecoes.

If you do not have web facilities or prefer to try a more direct approach, simply phone any of the major Electricity Suppliers and they will be able to confirm that you are one of their Customers, or will tell you who the actual current Supplier is. They will also be able to provide you with your MPAN.

Now that you have both the current supplier and the MPAN number , contact the relevant supplier right away. Be ready to tell them the exact date you took over responsibility for the meter and also have a first meter reading ready to give to them.

The reasons for acting quickly are as follows:-

Firstly, until you inform a supplier that you are responsible for an electricity meter, it will be assumed that the previous tenant is still responsible for all billing. Should there be any debt on the Account you may be approached about this by the existing supplier because they do not know you are now responsible as a consumer. In addition, it may affect your credit rating overall, as one element that makes up your credit rating is the business address.

Secondly, from the moment that you have assumed responsibility for the meter, you will be charged at the highest available rate by the incumbent supplier. They will do this because there are no pricing contracts in place with you as a new to them, Customer. This will be directly affecting your business costs, proportionate to your energy usage. You will want to take control of this as soon as you can.

When you contact the supplier that is currently responsible for the meter you have adopted, at this time it is good advice not to accept any pricing they offer. They can only offer their own pricing and it is likely that another supplier may have a more competetive rate. So, once you have informed the existing supplier of your details, it would be good advice to then shop around for the best price you can find for your Electricity.