Gas suppliers and energy providers have been sending their customers price increases, some of them hefty, for weeks. At the end of October, the gas surcharge will be added. The contracts often go through the owner or landlord. FOCUS online says what tenants need to know now.
Gas and electricity are a major concern for millions of households.
The proposed down payments for electricity and gas are driving up the cost of living. Gas households have to massively restrict their everyday lives and save energy.
In some cases, tenants are hit with a slight delay. That’s why you have to act quickly. Especially when the gas consumption is billed as ancillary costs.
As a rule, consumers are written to directly by the gas supplier. You will then receive a letter announcing the gas levy and also new general terms and conditions. At the same time, the advance payment is also adjusted. Millions of households are affected. You then have to act and first calculate whether the discount is correct.
The gas down payment must always be based on the previous year’s consumption.
The situation is a bit more complicated for tenants. Not you, but the owner or landlord receives this letter from the gas supplier. He can allocate the higher deduction to the advance payment for ancillary costs. Because this is also part of the total rent, the cost of living increases. For those affected, this becomes a heavy additional burden.
Tenants must react in order to be able to check the correctness of the corresponding adjustments in good time.
Contact the landlord. Clarify in advance whether the gas contract is linked to a price guarantee.
Also check your heating bill from the previous year. Your own consumption and the normalized average consumption must be listed there. Make a note of these values.
If the landlord has already been contacted by the gas supplier and the advance payment increases massively as a result, the gas supplier must be able to justify the higher advance payment. This is another reason why the landlord should object and have the deduction calculated based on the annual consumption from the previous year.
FOCUS online advises: Tenants should transfer around five percent of the monthly rent including heating to a call money or savings account by standing order. If you pay around 1,000 euros a month for rent, that’s 50 euros. With the financial cushion, you can protect yourself against an extreme additional payment. Experts expect four-digit amounts in 2023!
If you don’t have enough money to pay the higher gas bill, contact the relevant city or district administration, specifically the housing benefit authority, as soon as possible.
There you can apply for housing benefit or a rent subsidy. Application forms are available in paper form or online on the city or county website.
The authority responds to the application with a written decision within eight weeks.
If you had a very high consumption, step on the gas brake immediately. Lower the temperature when heating water, insulate pipes in the basement and turn down the heating control.