What’s the first thing that springs to mind when you consider PAYG energy?
I bet it’s the same as I thought – that it’s way too much hassle to set up and maintain, that you’ll experience random power outs or even the fact that it costs a fortune.
To be fair, all of these things were probably true way back in the day but technology has moved on massively now and considering you can now order your tea to be delivered to you using your laptop and can control lights in your house from your phone, maybe it’s time to consider the fact that times have changed and PAYG energy may well be the best way forward for you.
Before I tell you more though, let me share my experience of a recent power cut.
Are you sitting comfortably? 😉
Last Saturday afternoon, I was sat at the dining room table with my laptop catching up on some work before Mr Frugal came home from work with a chilli bubbling away in the slow cooker and a wash on in the washing machine. The kids are upstairs – one’s watching Netflix and the other one’s playing on their Xbox so all is quiet and I have plans to have a productive couple of hours before Mr Frugal comes home and I’m ready to pop the rice on to go with the chilli.
It sounds like a perfect Saturday afternoon to me and it really was – for about twenty minutes.
My perfect afternoon was rudely interrupted by a power cut! A power cut that stopped my wash in mid-spin and turned off the slow cooker just as the chilli was beginning to smell amazing but that’s not the worst of it – not even close.
The worst thing was that the power cut took out our wifi!
I know, imagine the trauma of having no wifi on a Saturday afternoon with two teenagers in the house.
They were downstairs within about 15 seconds of the power cut starting – both outraged that the wifi was out and that their Saturday afternoon was ruined. I checked online (on my phone using the worst 4G connection ever) and managed to find out that there was an unexpected power cut in our area and that power was expected to be back on in under 70 minutes.
70 minutes was unacceptable to my teens who literally spent the next 25 minutes alternating between pacing the floor and checking their phones for an update from the Northern Powergrid website.
Luckily it came back on after 25 minutes so total disaster was averted but much longer and I was going to have to get the board games out and get them to entertain themselves the old fashioned way with no electronics.
Anyone with teenagers can probably feel my pain here and this isn’t even my worst power cut story but I’m blocking the morning of the interview / wet hair experience from my mind as it’s too traumatic to think about.
I actually really like the idea of PAYG energy because it literally means that I can pay only the amount that I need to pay and I know that I’m never going to end up owing more than expected when it comes to taking my meter reading and getting my bill through. It’s only been my own misconceptions that have put me off in the past.
Modern PAYG though, especially with a company like Boost Power, looks like the way forward!
You can top up from your phone directly so it just takes seconds to do and because the app on your phone is connected right to a Smart Meter, it means that you can see your balance at any point and top up when you need to. You’ll get notifications to let you know when you need to top up which you can either do manually, by auto top up when your balance gets to a certain point or even a rolling top up where you can just pay a set amount each month. Knowing that I’ll get a notification when my balance is running low is really reassuring and was the main thing that worried me about PAYG energy – especially after last weekend’s power cut dramas.
If you have a bit extra spare, you can top up a little more than normal so you’re building up a bit of credit ready for Winter when bills are higher which is great for budgeting.
And the fact that you get a free Smart meter will probably save you money anyway as you’ll be so much more aware of how much energy you’re using – when you see how much certain things use then you’re bound to make a few changes to save.
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