Depending on your current gas and electricity consumption, getting an unlimited energy tariff could be the way to go. Although rare in the energy market, some households are opting for paying a lump sum to enjoy as much energy they use. Read on to find out why.
What are unlimited energy tariffs?
An unlimited energy tariff is exactly what it says on the tin. It’s an energy tariff that offers an unlimited amount of energy use for one flat price.
Unlimited energy deals
Unlimited energy deals work in the same way as most modern mobile phone contracts. No matter how many calls or texts you make, the price never changes. Unlimited tariffs are different from fixed tariffs in that your bill will always be the same for the length of the contract. With fixed deals, it’s the unit price, i.e. the cost per kWh that doesn’t change.
Why should I get an unlimited energy deal?
The main advantages of unlimited energy deals are:
- Long contracts - they’re usually between 12 to 18 months in length giving you peace of mind
- Price cap-proof - you’re protected against any unit price rises
- Help with budgeting - you can plan your expenses ahead with no nasty surprises when the bill arrives
- Fuel flexibility - depending on the supplier, your unlimited plan can cover gas or electricity only or both (dual fuel).
Disadvantages of unlimited energy deals
While unlimited energy plans seem like the greatest invention since sliced bread, they do come with some downsides:
- Estimated usage - Unlimited energy deals are based on your previous energy habits meaning, if you start consuming less energy, i.e. you make energy-saving improvements to your home, you’ll be locked into over-paying for the remainder of your contract
- The small print - most unlimited deals are “unlimited’ within reason or come with a usage cap in the T&Cs. That means any plans of turning your flat into a secret, 24-hour laundrette with disco lights and a bar should be put on hold. Some unlimited contracts include clauses that say you will be moved to a standard variable tariff (SVT) if you’re found to have abused your usage
- The supplier is boss - signing up for an unlimited tariff could mean agreeing to conditions such as getting a smart meter installed, paying by Direct Debit and submitting meter readings every 60 days
- Critics of unlimited energy deals claim they encourage households to use more energy rather than generate it.
Unlimited energy suppliers
At the time of writing, we found only two suppliers offering unlimited tariffs; Green Star Energy’s ‘Unlimited 12M’ and British Gas’ ‘Unlimited’ tariff. E.ON’s ‘Staywarm’ unlimited tariff is no longer available.