Your energy supplier does not know how much you use per month: is it better to pay monthly? † My energy bill

mining energyFor contracts with a variable rate, the kilowatt hour rate changes during the year. However, you only have to submit your meter readings once a year. How can the supplier know how your consumption is spread throughout the year? explains it.

By Kurt Deman, in collaboration with

28-06-22, 14:01

Latest update:

mining energy

With a fixed energy rate, the picture is simple: the kilowatt hour price remains the same for the entire contract year. When you pass on your meter readings or — in the case of a digital meter — the energy supplier that receives it via the network operator, the energy supplier only needs to multiply your kilowatt-hour rate by the number of kilowatt-hours consumed.

However, anyone who concludes a new contract or extends his current contract today will hardly find fixed rates on the energy market. Moreover, the remaining supply appears to be significantly more expensive than the entry rate of the current, variable rates on the energy market. Since the kilowatt hour rate changes every year or quarter, it is important to know how the consumer spreads his consumption throughout the year with a variable rate.

Also read: Compare variable energy contracts? Read here how to do that

Consumption profiles

However, the energy supplier does not check exactly how much you use each month. It is based on standard profiles, which indicate how an average consumer with a similar profile develops his consumption over the course of the year. For natural gas, for example, January represents 18.2 percent of total annual consumption, while that share is barely 1.3 percent in July. That estimate may differ from what you use as a family yourself. If you stay abroad during the entire month of January, 18.2 percent of your annual consumption will still be subject to the often higher kilowatt hour price that then applies.

Monthly settlement

Since April it has been possible to change your energy supplier to request a monthly statement† In that case, invoicing takes place — by analogy with the mobile phone bill — on the basis of what you actually use. Since you pay monthly, the fixed advance is no longer applicable in that case. This option is only available to owners with a digital meter. Only the largest energy suppliers — Engie, Luminus, Mega, TotalEnergies and Eneco — should offer that option to their customers. A survey of the various players shows us that consumer interest remains low for the time being.

Avoid surprises

The big advantage of the monthly settlement is that you pay exactly for what you use. This way you avoid surprises. Since energy prices have increased so much, the actual consumption costs are often higher than what you have paid as a monthly advance. This is especially the case with variable contracts, where the energy price evolves along with the market prices throughout the year. Due to the strong price increase that has taken place in recent months, in that case you pay a lot more today for the same consumption than roughly nine months ago. Anyone who has not adjusted his advance amount in the meantime will soon have to cough up several hundred euros extra at the end of his contract year. Since you no longer pay an advance, you also do not run the risk of losing paid advances if the energy supplier goes bankrupt.

One month is not another

The downside is that you will pay much more in the winter months than in the summer, because your consumption is higher then. These fluctuations will manifest themselves particularly strongly on the gas bill. Although that may also lead to adjusted consumption habits. After all, you are confronted with your actual energy costs every month, which means that as a consumer you may be more likely to try to reduce your consumption.

Also read on

Monthly energy bill: what are the pros and cons?

Will energy suppliers soon be obliged to offer a fixed rate?

How much do your solar panels yield exactly during sunny days?

This article was brought to you by our partner Mijnenergie. is an independent energy price comparator of electricity and gas offers.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Never miss any important news. Subscribe to our newsletter.