Why you should compare utilities when moving home
There is so much to think about when moving house that it is so easy to forget something. It is particularly important that the utilities are not in that forgotten category, other wise it could end up costing you money, as well as a good deal of inconvenience.
The best way to ensure that this does not happen is to prepare a check list well in advance of your move so you all the services you require are available from the day you arrive in your new home. This applies equally whether you are re-mortgaging or are a first-time buyer. First of all concentrate your mind on those vital communication issues which seem to be increasing all the time. There is your land-line, your mobile phone, your Internet Service Provider, your Broadband supplier.
Make some enquiries. Give your supplier a call, tell them about your impending move and ask if it is possible to transfer your old number or set up a redirection service to your new number. Make sure that there is a line available at your new home. If not you will find that you have to pay a BT reconnection charge, which is in the region of £125.
Remember to allow at least a fortnight before the date you want your old number de-activated and five working days for the new one.
Council tax is another important area to consider. Visit your local authority website and fill out the online form t notify them of your changing circumstances. If you are moving out of jurisdiction of that particular council you will also need to contact your new local authority.
As for the electricity, your supplier will need at least two days’ notice of your move – but it might be wise to let them know earlier than that. Make arrangements for the meter to be read, or make a note of the reading yourself. When you arrive at your new home you should read the meter immediately. If you find there seems to be no electricity check the light-bulbs, the fuses and the trip switches, and there is still nothing and you appear to have been disconnected call the local electricity distributor and ask them to send an engineer.
Finally, the gas supply. As with electricity, most gas suppliers need a minimum of two days’ notice, but the longer you can give them the better. Read the meter when you leave, let the supplier know, and you should receive your final bill for this address within a fortnight. Find out who supplies the gas at your new address. If it is not the same as you had before you will need to notify them that you have moved in.
If there is no gas supply when you arrive at your new home call British Gas to send an engineer to reconnect the supply. You may find that there is a charge for this. Remember to take readings as soon as you arrive.