Sweden passes out as one of the greatest countries to live in or visit. If not for adventure, you may still travel over to meet up with a dating partner, study, research, work…name it. The reasons for visiting Sweden are many and varied. But as people plan to start a fresh life in Sweden, there is always this common allure that everything in the country will be a smooth sail. Not very much so. Without dampening the spirits of anyone planning a move to Sweden, just have it in mind that the weather in the country can sometimes be freezing cold. For people arriving in Sweden from tropical climates, the first sure shocker will be the chilliness of the country.
People have their own ways of trying to keep warm and comfortable despite the cold winters in Sweden. Some will tell you that they find friends online or start online dating. Others will regularly call home just to get a reassurance from friends and relatives. But honestly, such attempts may not help so much. You must turn on the house heating system, wear your gloves and warm clothing. When outdoors, you have to ensure that the electricity is turned on to fight out the engulfing winter darkness. Mark you, with the heating and electricity demands in Sweden, comes the monthly bills yet already the cost of living in the country is already high.
Electricity and Heating Services in Sweden
Truth be told, bills when it comes to electricity and heating costs are no one’s favourite topic. I could be wrong, but one thing I know is that no one enjoys having to pay for comfort. Comfort! That’s exactly right. You can trust that comfort is the last thing your new home in Sweden will be without electricity and heating.
If you are from a tropical country then you should gear in for the seemingly long winter nights in Sweden. However, don’t panic just yet because you can always remedy the situation. With a reliable connection to gas and electricity, your home should be nice and warm in no minute. The good news is that there are many providers to choose from in Sweden. So, you can choose the one that best meets your needs and budget.
The electricity in Sweden comes from three main sources; wind, hydro or nuclear power. It implies that most households are connected to the electric grid since it is available. Sweden has an impressive utility network too so you can expect quality services. Most people use electricity and gas for heating. However, electricity is the popular choice for most households as it is cheaper.
Similarly, Sweden has no central heating system so the energy bills are a bit higher than in other countries. Most households in Sweden spend more on electricity and gas during colder months than warmer months. So you can expect your bills to inflate during these months since you will be trying to keep your house warm at all costs.
If you are renting in Sweden, you should confirm with your landlord whether utility services are included in your rental contract. If not then it means you can choose your own provider then set up a connection yourself. Also, remember that keeping your bills in your own name will save you a lot of extra costs.
Connecting to Electricity and Heating Services in Sweden
To connect to energy services in Sweden, all you have to do is sign an electricity contract. One thing you will notice about Sweden’s energy contracts is that they differ from those of other countries. In Sweden you must sign a contract with the electricity network operator who owns the grid where you live and transports the electricity to your home.
You are then expected to sign another contract with an electricity supplier that sells the electricity to you. While you can choose a supplier, you cannot choose which network operator to use. Also note that failure to choose a supplier will result in a “Anvisningsavtal” (designated contract).
This is a special contract offered to users with no preferred supplier. However, I wouldn’t recommend it because it does not always entail the best deal. Besides, why would you fail to choose when it could save you a lot of money?
Signing up With an Electricity Provider in Sweden
Most providers will offer two types of electricity prices. The first one is a variable electricity price that is based on market fluctuations. The second option is a guaranteed fixed price for up to three years. I would recommend the second option because it gives you a chance to organize your budget accordingly.
To sign you up most providers will ask for your personal information so include an ID or passport in the application. They might also let you choose which day you would like your contract to commence. Remember to include your network area ID and your electrical installation ID.
This information is usually available in previous bills. However, as a new tenant you can request this information when you register with your network operator. Finally, most suppliers will need the details of a contact person who will sign contracts as well as be the contact person. Both the network and supply contracts must be signed by the same person.
Electricity and Gas Bills in Sweden
Don’t be surprised to find two invoices for your electricity bill in Sweden. The two contracts you sign also imply that you pay twice. First you will pay the network operator for operating and maintaining the power grid. It consists of a fixed charge and a flexible charge reflecting your electricity usage.
Secondly, you pay the electricity supplier for the electricity that you consume. This entails a variable or fixed price per kilowatt-hour, depending on your tariff. It also includes VAT and energy tax. The VAT and tax are usually 40 percent of your total electricity costs. However, if you have the same network operator and the electricity supply, you will only receive one invoice.
Electricity Suppliers in Sweden
There are many electricity suppliers in Sweden. Your choice hence, should be informed by your needs and budget. The good news is most of their websites are in English so you should understand their services.
Some of the main ones include; Telge Energi, Göta Energi , and Fortum. You can use comparison websites to compare their services and choose one. A few websites I would recommend are Elskling, Compricer, and Elpriskollen.