Reasons to get an alternative quotation to the DNO

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Hundreds of new electrical connections are completed across the UK every day, as businesses, generation sites and homes are connected to the electricity distribution network. It used to be the case that only the Distribution Network Operators (DNOs) could provide the service, however over the years, the sector has seen an increase in competition between providers, meaning prices have become far more competitive and customers have greater choice.

Although it is good to get an initial quote from the DNO, customers should also look at obtaining quotes from alternative providers. Here are the main reasons to get an alternative quotation and how it can help you find the best deal.

Use the quote from the DNO to compare deals

Once you have obtained your initial quote from the DNO, use this as a ballpark figure when getting alternative quotations. This can then be used to compare against alternative providers, allowing you to find the best deal. Most ICPs will offer a free initial ballpark quote for your electrical connection, which can then be developed into a indicative quotation as your project advances.

Highly regulated quality of work

All ‘alternative providers’ must be an accredited Independent Connections Provider (ICP) registered on the Lloyds’ National Electricity Registration Scheme (NERS). This is a rigorous, audit-based qualification based on assessing processes and onsite work.

In addition, the design and installed works have to be to DNO standards. Regardless of who does the work, the end solution will be of the same standard. This means you may find that ICPs are cheaper than the DNO, but the work will be completed to the same standard, saving you money.

Using multiple suppliers can save you money

Whilst the DNO has to undertake certain ‘non-contestable’ works such as reinforcement works and the final connection to their network, there is now an increasing remit that the ICP can cover.

In addition, an ICP like Rock Power Connections, will undertake all the liaison with the DNO. This liaison often entails paperwork and other procedures that are time consuming. By using an ICP, the hassle is taken away from you and you will have one single point of contact throughout.

Not only that, your work will still be completed with liaison with the DNO, but you may also be able to save money as the ICP may have offered you a cheaper price than the DNO.

Save time

If you are in a rush to acquire quotations, it may be best to look at ICPs first. DNOs and larger energy suppliers could take months to provide a quotation, whereas independent suppliers can often offer faster delivery, increased flexibility around projects, innovative engineering solutions and competitive pricing.

By being more flexible to timescales of a development, delivering on time can prevent unwanted costs in interim power generators or delays in the construction phase, meaning the overall cost of the installation is very likely to be less than if you went with the DNO.

Added benefits of using and ICP

ICPs will manage any new projects or connection switch-over from start to finish and often provide a more dedicated and personal service compared to the ‘default’ utility companies.

Another key benefit of choosing the ICP route, instead of accepting the DNO quotation, is getting the installation adopted by an Independent Distribution Network Operator (IDNO).

These organisations fulfil the same function as a DNO, but are not geographically based and are willing to adopt the cables and switchgear involved in a new electrical connection.

This means you have no ongoing responsibility for the servicing or maintenance of the installation, with the added bonus of the IDNO paying you an ‘asset value’ – a financial sum – upon energisation.

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