Guidance

Piggy bank Billing

We have pulled together a compilation of best practice relating to billing HERE. This is particularly important in the context of the wholesale gas price rises, which heat network customers have little protection from, and as 'billing and charges' is consistently a top cause of complaint among customers on heat network registered with Heat Trust.

Customer complaints Complaints

Best practice relating to dealing with complaints can be found HERE. This is a key interaction with customers and we believe that all heat network operators have their customer’s best interests at heart – when things go wrong, they want to fix them. 

ChargesStanding Charges

A summary of Heat Trust's requirements and best practice suggestions for breaking down standing charges so customers can more easily understand them can be found HERE.

ComplaintPre-contractual transparency

A collection of best practice actions to ensure customers are able to see the key terms and conditions of heat supply before moving in, also known as pre-contractual transparency, can be found HERE.

 

CovidCovid

The heat networks industry, with the help of BEIS, collectively produced some guidance on managing heat networks during COVID-19, aiming to help owners/operators of heat networks to anticipate and seek support in the event of difficulties. It can be found at this link.

 

Template contracts

ContractCustomer Charter

See here for Heat Trust's guide to information that should be included in a customer charter. For heat networks, a Customer Charter may be used where it is not possible to have a separate Heat Supply Agreement between the supplier and customer about their Heat Energy Supply.

ContractResidential Supply Agreement

Clean energy law firm Lux Nova Partners, a member of the Triple Point Heat Networks Investment Management consortium, has drafted a suite of template heat contracts for use by anyone involved in a district heating scheme. They were commissioned by BEIS and developed through consultation. 

The template Residential Supply Agreement might be of particular interest to prospective members of Heat Trust. It was designed to be compliant with the Heat Trust Scheme Rules.

If intending to use the RSA template, you would need the following additional information to in order to apply for membership with Heat Trust (with the relevant Scheme Rule in brackets):

  • statement of flow temperature (Section 6.1)
  • Guaranteed Service Payments for interruptions that match our Scheme Rules (Section 6.3)
  • information on Heat Trust, up to date heat tariffs and higlights of the key terms and conditions of the heat supply, to be available for prospective customers (Section 8.1)
  • how to read a meter and submit a reading, and how customers can view their consumption (Sections 8.2 and 9.3)
  • how to operate their pre-payment meter, if applicable, including emergency credit (Sections 9.5 and 16.2)
  • how often the meter and HIU will be inspected (Sections 9.7 and 10)
  • contingency and maintenance plans (Section 11)
  • process for supporting both customers in need of additional support AND customers in vulnerable situations (Sections 13 and 14)
  • bills that include information on where to find advice or answers to queries (Section 15.6)
  • procedure for complaints (Section 17)
  • privacy policy (Section 21)

Please get in contact if you have any questions or would like further advice.