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Multi-Rate Tariffs: Economy 7 & 10

Economy 7 and Economy 10 are the two most popular multi-rate tariffs. There multi-rate tariffs were created in 1978 for residential properties that have storage heaters.

However, there are still appealing to many homes and business energy users across the UK today. Both Economy 7 and Economy 10 offer home and business energy consumers an alternative type of payment structure for their electricity consumption. 

Multi-Rate Meters

Multi-rate meters will work in any home or business premises. They are programmed to provide cheaper electricity at predefined times in the day. These periods are called off-peak hours. Each supplier has a different definition of peak hours.

Economy 7 and Economy 10 are the two most popular type of multi rate meters.   

What Is An Economy 7 Tariff?

Economy 7 tariffs offer savings if you use a lot of off-peak electricity. This means that most of the energy usage is in the evening and through the night. As the name suggests, Economy 7 tariffs are designed for people who want to save money on their energy bills. 

The seven hours that gas and electricity are cheaper is known as off peak. Each energy supplier has different times, so it is important to understand what those times are before signing up to these off-peak rates.

Economy 7 tariffs are one of the most popular tariffs available for business energy and home energy. Typically, businesses operating mainly at night will see significant savings. However, an Economy 7 tariff typically has higher rates during the day.

Pros of Economy 7 Tariffs

  • An Economy 7 tariff offers real savings for people who use at least 40% of their energy at night. Lots of homes and premises have smart appliances that can be set to start during off-peak hours, which means that saving money has never been easier. 
  • People who power their homes or premises with storage heaters can benefit from reduced unit prices without changing their day-to-day routines. 

Cons of Economy 7 Tariffs

  • Lots of energy suppliers have adopted an Economy 7 tariff, but not all suppliers offer the same hours. Some suppliers might class 12 pm to 7 am as off-peak, whereas others will provide consumers with lower rates from 11 pm to 6 am. Night rate gas and electricity will also vary by energy supplier.
  • Economy 7 tariffs do not suit every household or business. They are designed for specific circumstances. If you use most of your energy during the day this might not be the best option for you.
  • To compensate for reduced unit prices at nighttime, Economy 7 tariffs come with more expensive peak unit charges. Businesses that operate within normal working hours and use electricity to power lots of monitors will not benefit from this type of tariff. 
  • This type of tariff is not flexible. If your circumstances unexpectedly change, you could end up paying over the odds for electricity. A new addition to your family or a new remote position can change your electricity consumption and overall bill. 
  • Economy 7 tariffs are only available for electricity. Suppliers do not offer off-peak hours for gas. Some home energy consumers prefer the simplicity that comes from getting all their electricity and gas from one tariff.

What Is An Economy 10 Tariff? 

Economy 10 offers what Economy 7 does with an additional 3 hours of night rate. Many prefer an Economy 10 tariff as it offers additional time to take advantage of cheap electricity. Off peak tariffs are usually popular with bars, nightclubs and any other business that operates late at night. However, anyone with storage heaters can save money with an Economy 10 tariff.

Pros of Economy 10 Tariffs

  • This tariff gives residents and business owners far more flexibility. They can go about their day-to-day activities without worrying about high unit rates during the daytime. Some providers even offer business and home energy consumers five off-peak hours at night, three in the afternoon, and two in the evening.
  • This kind of tariff can help you save up to 50% on off-peak energy. It is best suited to people you can set strict guidelines and follow them. By confining your electricity usage to specified off-peak hours, you can cut your electricity bill in half.

Cons of Economy 10 Tariffs

  • Economy 10 tariffs are best suited to homes and premises that have electrically heated radiator systems such as combination boilers.
  • They are not suitable for homes that have gas or oil heating. Most Economy 10 suppliers will split the off-peak hours into three time periods. Old heating systems might not work quickly enough to power your home. 

Who Are Multi-Rate Tariffs Made for?

Multi-rate tariffs are designed for specific circumstances. This means only businesses and homes that use energy during off peak hours will benefit from cheaper electricity and gas.

To benefit from Economy 7 and 10 deals, consumers should confine 40% or more of their electricity consumption to off-peak hours.

We recommend an Economy 7 deal for the following situations. 

  • Homes that have combination boilers
  • Businesses that use a large amount of electricity at night e.g. over-night call centres that cater to international companies
  • Homeowners that work regular hours away from home
  • Any organisation that offers overnight services that use electricity e.g. busy city-centre laundrettes
  • Homeowners who are childfree or those whose children have moved away

Economy 7 & 10 FAQs

  • Does Every Energy Supplier Offer An Economy 7 Tariff?

    Most energy suppliers offer an economy 7 tariff. However, not all energy suppliers offer business energy tariffs. It is advised to compare energy deals from a several energy companies to ensure you're getting a great deal.

  • Do Economy 7 Meters Adjust When British Summer Time Ends?

    Off peak electricity rates do not change when British Summer Time ends. Anyone on an Economy 7 tariff should be aware of this to ensure they save money and avoid higher energy prices.

  • Can I Get A Smart Meter With An Economy 7 Tariff?

    Most energy suppliers will offer a smart electricity meter alongside an Economy 7 tariff. For large usage businesses, it is advised to speak to any energy expert to help you build a custom energy tariff as you may be required to install half hourly meter.

  • Where Can I Find My MPAN & MPRN Number?

    Your MPAN (meter point administration number) and MPRN (meter point reference number) are both located on your gas and electricity bills. You can also find them displayed on both your gas and electricity meter.

  • Am I On An Economy 7 tariff?

    You may be able to check on a recent energy bill to see if you are on an Economy 7 tariff. You should call your current energy supplier to find out what gas and electricity tariff you're on. If you would like to switch to a different tariff, you can compare energy tariffs here.

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