Why Transparent Fees Matter When It Comes To Energy

We can be extraordinarily helpful when it comes to procuring and managing your business’s utility contracts, including electricity, gas, and water. In addition, we go beyond simply finding a great contract – we also help you monitor your energy usage, reduce waste and find other ways to cut costs while delivering a superior service to your business, your tenants and everyone else who relies on your utilities to live, work and get things done.

Though some people choose to purchase directly from energy suppliers – and almost always end up paying higher charges as a result – most people choose instead to work with a broker or consultant. However, the way that brokers and consultants are compensated for these services isn’t always the same.

Often, these services are paid for through commissions built directly into energy contracts – and this has the potential to lead to misleading accounting, hidden fees. In turn, this undermines trust in our industry.

Why does this happen?

It’s simple: many energy brokers and consultants who bill on commission receive a commission themselves from energy suppliers for bringing in new business. In this situation, the supplier chooses a base rate, bakes the broker or consultant’s commission directly into this number, and then bills you, the customer, for both (without outlining how much of your payment is, in fact, going to your energy broker or consultant).

This means that in order to figure out how much your energy consultant or broker is being paid, you would need to ask your supplier directly and calculate it yourself. You may find yourself surprised by how much more than normal you’re paying for services. You may even feel taken advantage of – especially if you’re locked into a multi-year contract charging you more than you feel like you should be paying.

Additionally, if your broker or energy consultant is working to collect commissions first and serving you second, how comfortable are you trusting their advice and recommendations? Since you likely cannot see their negotiations with the supplier, again, you’re left in the dark – and left with a seemingly arbitrary number to pay on your invoice and little else.

You might be left wondering…

  • Are there suppliers that may have provided a better deal for me, but that my energy broker didn’t consider because they didn’t offer as good a commission?
  • Did I even see every contract offered to my business?
  • Is my contract designed with my best interests in mind – or my broker’s?

This is why Clifford Talbot Partnership does things differently. We prefer to invoice for our services on a flat-fee basis, outlined explicitly on every invoice we send you. You’ll know exactly how much we’re taking from every payment and where it’s going – and you’ll know that we worked to find you the very best offers to meet the needs and unique challenges of your business.

In the event that your business structure or payments system requires that you pay your energy broker or consultant on a by-commission basis, we can accommodate that as well. However, we will outline that amount clearly to ensure that you know that we’re doing right by you. We never attempt to be paid commission other than that agreed with you.

Share your thoughts about payment structures in our sector by replying below?