Reasons to avoid a DIY move

How to set up utilities when renting

Utilities

Whether it’s your first rental property or your third, setting up gas and electricity should be one of your priorities. This is because you need your utilities to be turned on for a decent standard of living, such as being able to cook and access clean water. If you’re wondering how to set up your utilities while renting, you’ve come to the right place.

Here’s a standard step-by-step process to get you going. Before you begin, it’s recommended that you find out which utilities you’re responsible for as a tenant, as this varies depending on the rental. Generally, you’ll be expected to pay for your own gas and electricity but this isn’t always the case.

1. Gather the relevant information

Before you begin it’s useful to gather all of the information you need for setting up utilities for your rental. Again this varies depending on the provider you choose but a general rule of thumb is that you’ll need:

    • A recent meter reading
    • Your new address in full
    • Preferred start date

If you’re unsure, the preferred start date is usually the day that you intend to move in.

2. Research various utility providers

There are many different providers of gas and electricity in the UK. Some tenants like to shop around separately for their gas and electricity, but it’s often cheaper and more convenient to get a package deal if possible. If you want minimum hassle, you can simply stay with the providers set up by the previous tenant. However, check that their tariff rates are suitable for your budget before you do this.

While you’re researching gas and electricity providers, you may also want to consider other utilities such as water, as well as other essentials like broadband. Consider making notes on your research, including possible providers for each type of utility and what the average costs for those utilities are shaping up to be.

3. Get in touch for a quote and switch-on date

Once you’ve started to research providers and have made a shortlist of preferred companies, start getting in touch for personalised quotes, if you haven’t done so already. These quotes inform you how much you can expect to pay per month for utilities. There are many different packages available so take your time to research thoroughly.

Getting utilities set up is easier than before as many providers now have online portals that you can log in to. These portals allow you to sign up for a utility plan and arrange a start date – all without speaking to a single member of staff.

If everything goes accordingly, your rented property should have access to all of the necessary utilities on the agreed start date. Make sure your provider has agreed to this date or acknowledged it in some form, however.

green energy supplier

Who Is The Cheapest Energy Supplier In The UK?

Worried about energy prices going up? This article has some handy information to help you find out which suppliers can offer you the best rates.

 

You would have to have been living under a rock over the last few months to have avoided the constant scary headlines about the ‘energy crisis’. 28 energy companies have gone bust and all kinds of other repercussions have been made.

 

Why?

 

It’s complicated, but what it means for consumers is that the Ofgem energy price cap has now been increased to £1,277 a year, it’s highest ever amount, and it could go up by another 50% in April. This means that the average energy bill could reach £2,000 a year, which is quite frankly, terrifying for many people.

 

The good news is that there are many actions that you can take to try and protect yourself from being heavily impacted by these changes.

 

One way is to save energy as much as you can, which you can find out more about here.

 

Another way is to avoid sitting tight with your current provider and instead aim to go with the cheapest energy supplier available to you at this time. You can compare energy prices on lots of different websites, but as a great starting point we have a list of the cheapest tariffs available for you to consider below.

 

Please be aware that the figures are relevant at the time of this article being written, but this is a constantly changing situation and your personal circumstances, location and needs also influence which tariffs and providers are suitable for you.

 

Let’s take a look at the current four cheapest electricity suppliers in the UK offering variable tariffs:

 

Supplier  Tariff  Annual Cost*
     
Bulb Energy  Simple Energy  £692.626
     
Orbit Energy  5% OFF 4 LIFE  £645.532
     
Outfox The Market  One Green Flex  £640.21
     
Together Energy  Green Together Smart Sun ExcVar  £548.30

 

*(Annual cost is based on an average of 2,900 kWh of electricity being used per year.)

 

 

Let’s take a look at the current four cheapest gas suppliers in the UK offering variable tariffs:

 

Supplier  Tariff  Annual Cost*
     
Bulb Energy  Simple Energy  £581.974
     
Together Energy  Green Together Smart Sun ExcVar  £502.91
     
Orbit Energy  5% OFF 4 LIFE  £485.984
     
Outfox The Market  One Green Flex  £456.97

 

*(Annual cost is based on an average of 12,000 kWh of gas usage per year.)

 

If you are looking for fixed rate tariffs which lock the cost of energy over a fixed period of time, these are the 3 cheapest energy rates currently available in the UK for a fixed contract at the time of writing:

 

Electricity:

 

Supplier  Tariff  Annual Cost
     
So Energy  So Cherry  £992.95
     
E.ON Next  Next Online  £633.727
     
EDF Energy  Easy Online  £607.917

 

 

Gas:

 

Supplier  Tariff  Annual Cost
     
So Energy  So Cherry  £1,204.17
     
E.ON Next  Next Online  £493.150
     
EDF Energy  Easy Online  £443.496

 

As with variable rates, these fixed rates are based on an assumption of an average gas and electricity amount and are dependent on your location, needs and circumstances as to what is available to you.

 

It is also important to consider the general cheapest energy suppliers across the UK, and those in your general area. It’s a lot to consider but the great thing is that you have so much choice and there is probably at least one better option for you, than the energy supply and tariff you have set up already.

 

The next step is to discover your energy plan and supplier and then find out your average usage which is usually on your bills, or you can compare your metre readings. You can then compare the cheapest energy suppliers and shop around for the best rates. By being savvy with usage and energy providers, you can get through this energy price hike with minimal impact.

Move a Home Office

How to Pack and Move a Home Office

It’s not uncommon for people to leave the home office as one of the final places to pack. This chamber is feared by some even more than the garage. However, it isn’t all that tough. The trick is to get started early and fill a box here and there so that it does not feel like a massive undertaking, as it will if you get pressed for time. So, let’s get on with how to pack and move a home office!

Check and sort everything

When’s the last time you looked through the stack of papers on your desk? Depending on how much you use your office and the number of people who live in your house, this space may become a dumpsite for everything that doesn’t belong anywhere else. There may be anything stored there, from the kids’ lovingly created artwork to coupon boxes and gathered recipes. You’ll probably discover that a lot of the items in this area need to be discarded. Yes, you will have to deal with stress here, but it will help you out in the long term!

Sort important documents

All of your critical documents should be packed in your “carry-on” luggage so that they stay with you. Birth certificates, passports, automobile titles, financial paperwork, insurance information, and school, medical, and vet records are all examples of essential documents. Not that you want to anticipate your moving truck getting involved in an accident, but these are items you would be lost without if something were to happen to them. To keep them all together, put them in a large manila envelope or folder.

Packing tips

Everything that has a proper place outside of the office should go back to its location. It should make things a bit easier to manage. For example, a collection of hidden toys can go anywhere the rest of this pile is, and that unexpected jar of acrylic paint can go among the arts and crafts materials. But, if this stresses you out or you don’t want to do it, you can hire professional packers!

When packing books, stay away from big boxes that might become excessively heavy. Plastic milk containers, copy paper, and liquor boxes are all excellent options. They’re sturdy and the perfect size. Place a trash bag inside the box and place the goods inside the bag if you have objects that even a tiny amount of water might harm. Nothing inside will suffer any damage if this is the one odd package accidentally dumped in a puddle during that brief heavy downpour. Also, remember that moving trucks may get extremely hot in the summer and excessively cold in the winter, so it would be best to transport old pictures, CDs, and other delicate objects in your vehicle.

Get the right packing supplies

Due to all of the critical and expensive things found in a home office, it may not be easy to pack this room. You’ll need to prepare the proper packing materials well in advance to ensure the required protection for your sensitive papers, office equipment, and office furniture.

Sort your electronics

When you want to pack and move a home office, good organization is critical. Grab a pack of colorful stickers before you start disconnecting wires and taking out cables. Use equivalent stickers to label the port and cord, so you know how to reconnect everything. You can apply this technique to your entire entertainment center. Also, make sure you remove your printer and copier’s ink cartridges.

Then, cushion the bottom of the box with a soft sweatshirt or sweater. Place your computer, printer, and other electronics inside, along with the necessary connections and wires, in a Ziploc bag or tied together with twist ties. To protect the contents from moving about, stuff the box with shirts, socks, towels, or similar objects. Finally, write “fragile” on the exterior but never say what is really within the box.

Furniture

Before you hurry to pack your office furniture for a relocation, consider whether it is necessary for your particular situation. Most furniture items are pretty heavy, and transporting them to a new home may be quite costly. That is especially true if the new property is far away from your current residence. It’s sometimes more cost-effective to leave the old furniture behind (or sell it) and buy new furniture when you finish your move. Do you truly adore your office furniture to the point where you’d pay top dollar to relocate it across the country? Unless you have personal value in your items or an expensive antique piece made of solid wood, most furniture, particularly IKEA furniture, is not worth transporting. The workload of moving it is vast, and you should probably avoid the DIY move.

Books

There’s a high possibility your home office has many books that you’d like to relocate to your new home office. Before moving them, you need to make sure you have correctly packed them for the journey ahead. Examine your book collection to determine if there are any titles that you don’t need to pack and relocate. Some books become obsolete over time. It’s always a good idea to look through your collection and get rid of those you won’t use again.

Do this with all of your books, not just the ones at your home office. Be reasonable; you don’t want to waste money transporting goods you no longer desire.

Back up your data

Anything can happen during a move. That’s why you have to make sure to back up all of your critical electronic work data if your computer is damaged during transit. Back up all necessary computer files to a portable flash drive or an external hard drive for peace of mind. Consider utilizing an online backup service to copy your most important electronic data to make things extra secure.

Hiring movers

Your best friend will be your moving company when you want to pack and move a home office. That’s why it’s crucial to find a reputable moving company. They will help you avoid all the potential moving disasters and make sure that you have a smooth relocation. If you don’t have enough time to pack, movers usually provide that service. That way, you won’t need to do last-minute packing and get stressed for no reason.

Before hiring anyone, make sure to do proper research on your movers. That way, you will reduce the chances of being scammed and have more peace of mind! Read the reviews and compare the prices of multiple options to make sure you get the best deal.

This concludes our rather comprehensive list of tips on how to pack and move a home office. Daunting as it may seem, you will get to it quickly and effortlessly if you follow our advice. Happy moving!