Prepaid electricity plans are situations when an up-front payment is made as opposed to employing a monthly billing cycle. There are different payment methods that can be enjoyed and should extra gas or electricity be needed, the account can be “topped up” from time to time. This type of service is often found in an apartment or a rental property. The main benefit is that prepaid plans will allow the customer to determine an exact budget that will suit his or her needs.
Types of Plans
The variety of packages tends to revolve around how payments will be made. A meter will be installed in a property that is specifically designed for prepayments. The deposit method will centre around the type of plan that is used. For example, a customer can add extra credit to a service by the means of a token or a “smart card” that can be “topped up” at a local post office or through an online portal.
Of course, a package deal will often come with a certain amount of utilities already covered. This will be determined by the client. In some cases, larger amounts of credit may result in reduced overall tariffs. Finally, a plan can involve only the use of electricity or a package deal can be encountered that will combine the costs of both electric and gas.
Factors to Take into Account
One of the first priorities is to determine the amount that will be needed. This can depend upon the length of the stay, the time of year or one’s available budget. Secondly, different companies will be associated with varying levels of utility tariffs. These should also be taken into account, for the fiscal impact can be considerable. Also, there are times when a prepaid meter can be used to pay off a debt to a company. In this case, the rates charged will be higher until the debt is cleared (this can be on top of existing energy bills).
How to Get the Best Deal
Keep in mind that some companies which offer prepaid meters will charge what may be prohibitively high tariffs. This can strain what may already be a tight budget. A handful of other factors that should be addressed can include:
- The reputation of the company.
- The regions that the company serves.
- The means available to add credit to an account.
- The security of the meter (to avoid tampering).
- The penalties involved if a late payment occurs.
While prepaid gas and electricity can be a useful means to supply heat and power to a location, it is very important to pay attention to these aforementioned variables. Thereafter, the most agreeable deal can be found.