Terms of business

The terms below are applicable to customers where Cost Advice Services Ltd (CostAdvice) has provided advice, prices, quotations or other documentation whether verbally or written to that customer or customers.

Cost Advice Services Ltd is a company registered in England and Wales with company registration number 3086905 and who’s registered office is situated at 1 Church View, Clay Cross, Chesterfield, Derbyshire, S45 9HA.

Any information or advice provided by CostAdvice, its employees or any of it’s colleagues, affiliates, peers or associates should remain confidential between the disclosing party and the receiving party.

Any documentation created by CostAdvice, including any attachments to an email created by CostAdvice remain the intellectual property of CostAdvice and may not be copied, amended, used or distributed for business purposes by any other party without the written permission of CostAdvice. Customers should be aware that signed contracts, direct debit forms and other material in our possession may be retained. Please see our document retention policy here.

Opinions expressed in correspondence between CostAdvice and any other party whether verbally or in writing are those of the writer/speaker and may not represent the views of CostAdvice and the company, its directors or employees make no representation or accept any liability for its accuracy or completeness unless expressly stated to the contrary.

Any correspondence sent within or outside the premises of CostAdvice is intended solely for the addressee(s). CostAdvice take no responsibility for the actions of any third party including Customers, Suppliers or otherwise.

Any prices or quotations CostAdvice may send to customers may include commission payable to CostAdvice by the energy supplier if the Customer accepts and agrees to enter into a contract with an energy supplier. Customers are also aware that and undertand that when signing a supply agreement provided by Cost Advice that:

 - they're agreeing a legally binding contract with the supplier;

 - the supplier might not accept the contract, if it doesn't meet their conditions (for example if they fail the credit check);

 - they have to end their current contract and arrange payment of any outstanding balances and/or penalties they owe; and

 - the supplier may contact them directly.

CostAdvice withhold the right to not provide the services to a customer if they believe they have a legitimate reason to withhold such services. Services include the analysis of energy supplies, tendering and obtaining energy prices, securing energy prices with the customer’s chosen supplier, resolving any supply issues including but not limited to transfer objections and invoicing issues.

CostAdvice may offer any services they wish to do so to a customer, and do not have to offer the same services or level of service to all customers. CostAdvice withhold the right to conduct it’s business within the law.  CostAdvice may use personal contact information provided to us by customers to provide information relative to the products and services being supplied by CostAdvice to that customer and in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

Any prices or quotations sent to customers are provided in goodwill using information provided by the customer or supplier or any other reputable source. In all cases it is the customer’s responsibility to ensure they have read, understood and agree to the energy supplier’s terms and conditions prior to signing a supply agreement or providing CostAdvice the permission to sign a supply agreement on the customers behalf. If a supply agreement does not match the customer requirements it is the customers responsibility to highlight such issues to CostAdvice prior to them signing a supply agreement or providing CostAdvice the permission to sign a supply agreement on the customer’s behalf.

CostAdvice shall not knowingly disclose confidential information to any third party for marketing or other business purposes. CostAdvice may, and often will have to disclose certain supply information, company details or (where required) personal information to potential suppliers and other third parties (such as meter installers or siteworks providers) in order to carry out it’s business practices and obtain necessary quotations for electricity supplies, gas supplies, meter installations or any other works or quotes as requested by the customer. By using any services of CostAdvice or providing any of your information or preferences to CostAdvice you are permitting us to hold these details on file under the Data Protection Act and comply with GDPR, and use these details in line with our Privacy Policy.

If customers have a complaint regarding our services please contact us in the first instance by calling 01246 252780 or writing to us at CostAdvice, Church View, Clay Cross, Chesterfield, Derbyshire, S45 9HA . A copy of our complaints procedure is available upon request.

If customers have any queries regarding to the terms of service or CostAdvice’s business practices they should contact the office by calling 01246 252780 or by writing to CostAdvice, Church View, Clay Cross, Chesterfield, Derbyshire, S45 9HA or by emailing enquiries@costadvice.co.uk.

Cost Advice may record and monitor all calls to and from its offices for training, monitoring and compliance purposes.

1) Suppliers we work with

Suppliers we work with include Avanti Gas, Bristol Energy, British Gas, Brook Green Supply, Contract Natural Gas (CNG), Corona Energy, Crown Gas & Power, Dual Energy, Ecotricity, EDF, Engie, Eon, First Utility, Gazprom, Good Energy, Green Energy, Haven Power, Hudson Energy, LoCo2 energy, MA Energy, nPower, Opus Energy, Orsted, Regent Gas, Robin Hood Energy, Scottish Power, Smartest Energy, SSE, Total Gas & Power, Utilita, Stark, Siemens, IMServ, Western Power. We may however work with other suppliers that are not on this list.

We will endeavour to always compare prices as fairly as possible, and will not skew any supplier quotations by adding more or less commission into prices to favour one supplier over another.

When searching the market for customers we will use the above suppliers to select the most appropriate and competitive product for you. Suppliers may be excluded from the price search if they do not provide services which the customer requires such as Direct Debit only payment if the customer requires Bacs. Cost Advice do not have to present offers from all suppliers and may exclude them if Cost Advice do not feel the supplier or product to be suitable for that particular customer.

2) Letter of Authority (‘LOA’)

By providing CostAdvice with a signed LOA, the Customer agrees for Cost Advice to gather information and tender the Customer’s electricity, gas and water supplies (as appropriate) to its network of Energy Suppliers. This is also in conjunction with the CostAdvice Privacy Policy.

3) Comparison of offers

It is the ultimate responsibility of the Customer to ensure any supply offer accepted via CostAdvice is suitable for the Customer and meets their requirements.

This responsibility is particularly relevant where the Customer may be obtaining quotations from additional TPIs, and the Customer is therefore comparing offers from multiple parties.

4) Administration Fees

CostAdvice shall only be able to charge the Customer, and the Customer accepts to pay Administration Fees ONLY in the following circumstances;

i) Prior to securing electricity, gas or water agreements either directly with suppliers or via another third party, the Customer requests any suppliers to disregard the Letter of Authority held by CostAdvice, purposefully prevents CostAdvice from obtaining quotations from any suppliers or in any way acts to place CostAdvice at a competitive disadvantage in providing a fair opportunity in presenting competitive quotations to the Customer.

ii) Where we understand the quotations presented by us to the Customer are more competitive than those obtained via another third party (for the same supplier, contract type and duration) however the Customer has still elected to secure the agreement via another third party, or where the Customer fails to perform a like-for-like comparison of prices from an alternative third party and agrees a supply contract via the other third party (whether or not the information provided to the Customer by the other third party allowed a like-for-like comparison or not). For the avoidance of doubt it is the Customer's responsibility to ensure that any price comparison is carried out on a like-for-like basis and should seek advice if they are unsure of the specific structure of any offer provided by another third party. If you are in doubt about any offers received from other third parties, we will help you compare offers received to ensure a like-for-like comparison is undertaken.

iii) Where CostAdvice present prices to the Customer, and the Customer subsequently enters into negotiations directly with any Suppliers which appear on the quotation documents provided by CostAdvice. For the avoidance of doubt, nothing in these terms will prevent Customers from obtaining quotations from alternative Suppliers which CostAdvice either i) do not have a commercial relationship with, or ii) do not present to the Customer on any quotation documents. The Customer is still bound by clause 4.x) to give CostAdvice the final opportunity to match or beat any offer they obtain directly or via another third party before proceeding with a Supply Contract. 

iv) Where the Customer is obtaining quotations from another third party and does not give Cost Advice fair and ample opportunity to provide quotations defined below.

Supply type

Annual usage (kWh)

Number of supplies (MPANs or MPRs)

Fair and ample timescale for gathering information& initial quotations

Fair and ample timescale for subsequent refreshed quotations

Non Half-Hourly electricity

Any

1

3 full working days

1 full working day

Non Half-Hourly electricity

Any

2 or more

10 full working days

2 full working days

Half-Hourly electricity

Any

1 or more

10 full working days

2 full working days

Gas

<73,268

1

3 full working days

1 full working day

Gas

>73,268

1

5 full working days

2 full working days

Gas

Any

2 or more

10 full working days

2 full working days

 v) Where it transpires that the Customer already has an exclusive arrangement with another third party, and are therefore unable or unwilling to secure electricity/gas/water supply contracts via CostAdvice.

vi) Where the Customer ultimately secures a Supply Contract directly with a Supplier or via another Third Party, and refuses to or is unwilling to provide detailed and accurate feedback regarding the Supply Contact Secured within 14 calendar days after being requested to do so by CostAdvice. For the avoidance of doubt 'detailed and accurate feedback' shall entail the name of the Supplier, any and all rates including standing charges, contract duration, supplier product name (where applicable) and where applicable the details of any Non Commodity Costs which may or may not be included in such Supply Contract.

vii) Where the Customer has not provided to CostAdvice Supply Point information, Contract End dates, Current Supplier, Annual Consumption, Supply Capacity, HH Consumption Data, or any other information required to be submitted to Suppliers in order to obtain Supply Quotations, and CostAdvice have been requested to find/obtain by their own means, or CostAdvice have to obtain via their own means in order to tender to Suppliers in a full and proper manner, and any or all of such information is sent by the Customer to another third party or is sent by the Customer to a Supplier directly to request or obtain Supply Quotations.

viii) Where at any time prior to the Customer's Contract End date(s), the Customer requests from CostAdvice Supply Point information, Contract End dates, Current Supplier, Annual Consumption, Supply Capacity, HH Consumption Data, or any other information required to be submitted to Suppliers in order to obtain Supply Quotations, and the Customer does not enter into a new Supply Contract via CostAdvice to commence from the Contract Renewal date for a minimum period of 12 months and/or arranges a Supply Contract via another third party or with a Supplier directly.

ix) In conjunction with Clause 7 - New Connections, the Customer arranges a Supply Contract for a New Supply whereby Cost Advice have assisted with the New Connection.

x) Where the Customer provides an LOA to use the Services of Cost Advice, but during the validity period of that LOA (which is normally 12 months from the signature date) they agree a Supply Contract directly with a Supplier or via another party before providing CostAdvice ample opportunity to match or beat that offer. Ample opportunity shall be defined by the durations in clause 4-iv) referring to either initial quotations or refreshed quotations as applicable. Any alternative offers obtained by the Customer shall be forwarded to CostAdvice un-edited and be in writing by the Supplier and/or other third party as the case may be so a full, proper and fair comparison can be made.

The Administration Fees applicable in the above circumstances are confirmed in the below table:

Supply type

Annual usage (kWh)

Number of supplies (MPANs or MPRs)

Admin Fee per supply point

Non Half-Hourly electricity

Any

Any

£50.00 plus Vat

Half-Hourly electricity

Any

Any

£150.00 plus Vat or 0.2p/kWh (whichever is the greatest). **

Gas

<73,268

1

£50.00 plus Vat

Gas

>73,268

Any

£100.00 plus Vat or 0.1p/kWh (whichever is the greatest). **

 ** the kWh usage figure will be calculated as the clients actual usage over the last 12 months as confirmed by the current supplier.

For the avoidance of doubt, a 'Supply Point' is defined as an electricity Meter Point Administration Number (MPAN), gas Meter Point Reference (MPR) or water Supply Point ID (SPID).

The Customer agrees to pay such Administration Fees within 14 days of the date of the invoice from CostAdvice.

5) Formation and termination of contract:

i) When agreeing to a Supply Contract via CostAdvice, you agree and understand that you are entering into an exclusive arrangement to use the Procurement Services of CostAdvice during, and up to the end of the term of the Supply Contract. A Supply Contract will be deemed to have been agreed via CostAdvice where the signed or verbally agreed Supply Contract documentation has been returned to CostAdvice and in turn CostAdvice send that documentation to the Supplier in order to secure the Supply Contract, and the Supply Contract commences with the Supplier.

ii) Either CostAdvice or the Customer may terminate this Agreement by providing no less than ninety (90) days written notice before the Renewal Date of the relevant gas, electricity or water Supply Contract referred to in clause 5.i. Termination notices to CostAdvice will only be accepted if they are in writing by: a) email to enquiries@costadvice.co.uk or b) recorded postal delivery to Termination Notices, Cost Advice, 1 Church View, Clay Cross, Chesterfield, S45 9HA. Termination notices from CostAdvice to the Customer will be made in writing by a) email to the email address we hold on your account or b) in writing to the correspondence address we hold on your account.

iii) Should this Agreement not be terminated in accordance with clause 5.ii you agree and understand that you are bound under the terms of this Agreement to continue to use CostAdvice for Procurement Services for a duration a) of 12 months if the Customer elects to secure a Renewal Contract for a duration of less than 12 months or b) to expire at the Contract Renewal Date of the Renewal Contract.

iv) If termination is not provided according to clause 5.ii and you cease to use the Procurement Services of CostAdvice by agreeing a Supply Contract via another Third Party or directly with a Supplier, CostAdvice will charge, and you hereby agree to pay Administration Fees described in clause 4.

v) If you are provided with a Bona Fide alternative Supply Quotation from another third party, CostAdvice shall have the option, and you shall grant CostAdvice the option of matching the prices and terms of the Supply Quotation provided by the third party prior to you agreeing the alternative Supply Quotation. If CostAdvice are unable or unwilling to match the alternative Supply Quotation provided by the third party (or parties) CostAdvice will waive the Administration Fees referenced in clause 5.iv. For the avoidance of doubt the Customer shall disclose any and all information relating to the alternative Supply Quotation provided by the other third party (or parties) inclusding any written correspondence, Supply Contract documentation or other relevant documentation in order for CostAdvice to make a fair and accurate comparison. If CostAdvice are able to match or beat the alternative Supply Quotation provided by the other third party (or parties) the Customer agrees to either a) secure the Supply Contract via CostAdvice or b) agree to pay the Administration Fess referenced in clause 4 and 5.iv.

6) Lost income:

Where CostAdvice arrange a Supply Contract for the Customer, but that Supply Contract does not commence due to any of the following, CostAdvice shall be able to charge the Customer, and the Customer agrees to pay CostAdvice for Lost Income;

i) It transpires the Customer had already entered into a Supply Contract with a Supplier and CostAdvice were not made aware of such Supply Contract (including the same supplier which CostAdvice arranged a Supply Contract);

ii) The Customer subsequently enters into a separate Supply Contract with any Supplier after entering into a Supply Contract via CostAdvice;

iii) It transpires the Customer had already agreed to give authority to a third party to arrange Supply Contracts on the Customer’s behalf, and CostAdvice were not aware of such relationship or authority;

iv) The Customer subsequently agrees to an exclusive relationship with a third party which may or may not give the third party the authority to agree Supply Contracts on the Customer’s behalf.

For the avoidance of doubt, the 'Lost Income' will be calculated as follows:

(PAC x Ckwh x Dy) + (Cday x Dd), where:

PAC is the Projected Annual Consumption of gas or electricity (as applicable) as shown on the Supply Contract secured by CostAdvice, or the annual consumption shown on any Cost Advice quotation sheet, whichever is the greater.

Ckwh is the £ per kWh Commission value built into the Supply Contract secured via Cost Advice.

Cday is the £ per day Commission value built into the Supply Contract secured via Cost Advice.

Dy is the Duration of the Supply Contract in years arranged via Cost Advice.

Dd is the Duration of the Supply Contract in days arranged via Cost Advice.

CostAdvice may, at its discretion, choose to reduce the Lost Income amount by applying a percentage discount to the Ckwh and/or Cday values.

7) New Connections

i) Where Cost Advice assist the Customer with any New Connection the Customer agrees to exclusively engage Cost Advice for the Procurement Services for the New Supply for a minimum period of 12 months, commencing on the date the Supply Contract goes live with the Supplier. 

ii) For the avoidance of doubt, assistance in this matter shall include, but not be limited to requesting quotations for the New Connection, discussing or liaising with the Infrastructure Provider, discussing or liaising with the Gas Transporter regarding the New Connection or New Supply, discussing or liaising with the Distribution Network Operator regarding the New Connection or New Supply, discussing or liaising with any other party such as electricians, meter operators, site contacts or otherwise in relation to the New Connection or New Supply.

iii) Any Supply Contract arranged for a New Supply shall also be subject to the Terms. 

iv) If the Customer engages the services of any Third Party to arrange a Supply Contract for the New Supply, Cost Advice shall charge the Customer, and the Customer agrees to pay the Administration Fee as described in clause 4 plus an additional one off charge of £250 plus Vat.

The Customer agrees to pay any invoices for Lost Income issued by Cost Advice within 14 days of the date of the Invoice.

8) Definitions:

'Agreement' means the Terms of Business and the right and obligations contained within. 

'Annual Consumption' is the actual or estimated gas, electricity or water consumption at the Customer's Supply Point(s) per year.

'Contract End date' is the expiry date of the Customers current Supply Contract at the time they engage CostAdvice by means of signing an LOA.

'Contract Renewal date' is the day after the Customer's Contract End date.

'Current Supplier' is the Supplier to the Customer's Supply Points at the time they engage CostAdvice by means of signing an LOA.

'Customer', 'You', Your' means the Company and/or the individual (in cases of a sole trader or Partnership) who has signed the LOA.

'HH Consumption data' is the Half Hourly consumption data of gas or electricity for the Customer's Supply Point(s).

'Infrastructure Provider' means the provider of the infrastructure and or services for any New Connection.

'Procurement Services' are the actions and services provided by CostAdvice to you in order to present electricity, gas and water quotations (as appropriate) to you, including but not limited to requesting consumption data from relevant parties, requesting Supply Contract quotations from Suppliers, Supplier negotiation, provision and presentation of Supply Contract offers and securing the agreed Supply Contract with your elected Supplier.

'MPAN' means an electricity Meter Point Administration Number or 'Supply Number'.

'MPR' means a gas Meter Point Reference Number.

'New Connection' means any new gas mains supply or new electricity mains supply to a property.

'New Supply' means any gas MPR or electricity MPAN that has been created as a result of a New Connection.

'Renewal Contract' means any Supply Contract which is for any Supply Point which is subsequent to any previous Supply Contract for the same Supply Point.

'Supplier' is a supplier of Gas, Electricity and/or Water.

'Supply Capacity' is the Allocated Supply Capacity of electricity to a Customer's Supply Point(s) measured in Kva as agreed with the Distribution Network Operator (DNO).

'Supply Contract' is an agreement between the Customer and a Gas, Electricity and/or water supplier for the supply of Gas, Electricity and/or Water as applicable.

'Supply Point' is defined as an electricity Meter Point Administration Number (MPAN), gas Meter Point Reference (MPR) or water Supply Point ID (SPID).

'Supply Quotations' are the quotes, offers or contract documents produced by Suppliers detailing their charges for gas, electricity or water as the case may be.

'Terms' means all the terms included within this document.

'Third Party' means any party which is not CostAdvice, the Customer or a Supplier.