Are energy brokers independent?

They should be, but it’s not always the case. 

The reason is that some have preferred suppliers that sales people have to place business with, regardless of how competitive their prices are.

In some cases, in order to set up an agreement with an energy supplier, a broker will have to commit to providing them with a certain number of contracts per week.

This can impact the recommendations that the broker makes, because they often put their own need to hit their suppliers’ volume targets ahead of their customers need to save money.

As a rule, Vision Utilities don’t work with suppliers who set us volume targets.  It means that we don’t get prices from the whole of the market, but importantly, it means that the recommendations that we make are based entirely on finding the lowest cost contract for our clients.

What are your options?

Generally, a broker should give you a few options to pick from, because the lowest price isn’t always the only thing to consider.  If, for example, a customer has had a bad experience in the past with the cheapest supplier on the list, they may choose to take the next best offer to avoid the same issues re-occurring.

If a broker only gives you one option, they may just be trying to direct you exactly where they want you to go. In such a situation, it’s worth getting an alternative quote, either from a competing broker, or directly from a supplier.

Tip:  Ask your broker what their recommendations are based on.  ‘Best price’ is self explanatory, but if the answer is more vague, such as the ‘best overall solution’, don’t be afraid to ask for more detail.

Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions, or if you’d like to give us the opportunity to provide a quote.

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