Setting up gas and electricity in a new home

Woman using laptop while moving home.

Setting up your energy should be a priority when moving into a new home, whether you’re a homeowner, renting or moving to a new-build.

Sorting out your energy supplier is a different process for whether you’re setting up gas and electricity for the first time or with a new supplier in a new home, moving into a newly built home, keeping your existing supplier when moving, or moving into a rented property. We’ll look at each in turn.

If you already know that you’re keen to switch, see how to do an energy comparison to find the best gas and electricity deals for you.

Setting up gas and electricity for the first time / with a new supplier

Let’s say you’re moving into a house with your partner, and need to set up gas and electricity with a new supplier. You were both in shared accommodation before, so are setting up energy for the first time. 

Job one – find out which energy company supplies your new home. When you first move into a new property, you’ll be automatically put on a ‘deemed contract’ with the previous energy supplier. The easiest thing is to ask the people who lived there before you who their provider was, so make sure you don’t lose their details. 

If this isn’t possible, or if you’re too late, you can still find out who supplies the gas by visiting Find my Supplier or calling the Meter Number Helpline on 0870 608 1524. Give them the unique serial number on your meter. 

For the electricity, contact the local electricity distribution company. Use Energy Networks to find this out. Ask them for the company’s meter point administration service (MPAS). 

Once you’ve found your supplier, you’ll need to call them and give them your details, meter readings and the date you moved in and they’ll create a new account for you. Find out everything you need to know about meter readings.

However, it’s likely that most suppliers will automatically place you on their standard tariff upon moving in, with prices dictated by the energy price cap. If you’ve not switched supplier before, or want to know more about the process, find out how to switch your gas and electricity supplier.

Setting up gas and electricity in a newly-built home

If you’re moving into a new-build home, setting up your gas and electric should be fairly straightforward – leaving you to focus on the fun stuff like interior design and setting up your TV streaming services.

The best person to consult here is the developer. There’s no ‘default’ supplier, so once you know who the provider is, you can decide if you want to remain with them or not. If you decide to switch your gas, for example, there’s no need to inform the current supplier as your new one will do this for you.  

It’s important to take regular meter readings once you’ve set up with an energy supplier, to avoid paying too much or too little. As no one has lived in the property before, there’s nothing to compare it to.

If you’re paying by direct debit, it’s likely you’re paying 12 monthly payments based on your estimated annual usage. This means you could end up overpaying and building up a lot of energy credit. Find out how to check if you’re overpaying by direct debit and how to claim your money back.

Setting up gas and electricity with the same supplier when moving

If you’re moving house and want to keep the same energy tariff, this is often the easiest option. When you have your moving date, call your current energy supplier and tell them when you’re moving and your new address.

You should do this at very least 48 hours in advance. But the sooner the better, especially if your energy provider doesn’t currently supply the new property.

If you have a fixed tariff that you want to keep, you may be able to transfer this to the new property without incurring a fee. Speak to your provider about this. There is a chance that the unit cost might change slightly, especially if you’re moving to a different area.

They’ll either organise a meter reading or ask you to take a meter reading in the place you’re leaving so they can send you a final utility bill. Make sure you do this as soon as possible so you aren’t overcharged.

When you’ve moved, take a meter reading in the new place. If your provider hasn’t got round to supplying your new home, you may have to pay the former supplier’s standard variable rate (SVR) until the switch is complete.

You’ll also need to settle the final bill for your old property. If you’re in credit, check your account for refunds.

Don’t forget that you’ll also need to sort your council tax when moving home.

Setting up gas and electricity in a rented property

First of all, if you’re moving into a rented pad, you need to find out what type of meter you have. Usually this comes down to a credit meter or prepayment meter. If your landlord has included bills in your rent then there is nothing to do. 

If not, you need to find out who your supplier is from the landlord, get a meter reading on the day you move in and call them to ensure the property’s account is now in your name. 

If you choose to continue with this supplier, make sure you do this quickly so you don’t end up paying the previous tenant’s bill.

Credit meters can be paid by direct debit monthly. But for homes with a prepayment meter, you’ll need to arrange for a new top-up card or key to be delivered.  

Prepayment meters ensure landlords aren’t left with debt from their tenants, but they make it harder to switch to save as the cheapest fixed deals are for standard credit meters.

If this is what you’re dealing with, consider asking your landlord if they’re willing to switch to a credit meter. If they refuse, search for the best deal and switch your gas and electricity to the best prepayment tariff going.

It’s also a good idea to sort out your council tax for a rental property at the earliest opportunity.