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UTILITY AUDITING BUSINESS
Minimum Start-Up: $500
Average Start-Up: 15,000
Revenue: $35,000 - $1 Mil+
Profits: $20,000 - $500,000
One Person Business: Yes
Auditing is not a matter of magic. If you have the patience to sort through
regulatory tariff and have a keen eye to spot billing inconsistencies, you
can conduct an audit.
Auditing utility bills has become one of the most popular areas of
concentration for auditors because of the inherent complexity of billing for
utilities. Utility rates are highly confusing because they differ depending
on type of service, volume of useeage, and promotional packages offered at
the time of installation.
Utility Auditors earn commissions, usually around 50% of any overcharge they
uncover. And this is where you may need to exercise more of your patience.
Although utility companies would gladly settle a verifiable overcharge
(relatively quickly out of court), it may ake them up to six months to issue
any refund. This is particularly true with larger utility firms.
Most clients prefer to pay auditors on commission basis for two reasons:
No upfront cash outlay, and no risk if the auditor comes back empty-handed.
For the auditor, working on commission offers distinct advantages: It makes
it easier for them to land clients, and it usually enables hem to earn more
than if they would take a basic fee.
MAKING THE SALE
The biggest challenge facing auditors is to get a poteneial client to admit
that "there is a high probability that they (the client) overpaid for their
utilities without knowing it". This issue is usually not a problem if the
client is a small business where the owner makes all the decisions. However,
th executive committee of a major corporation may feel threatened that
they"ll be held accountable for irresponsibly overpaying for utility.
Your job is to convince your potential client that overcharging does happen
and that it is the job of an outsider auditor, and not people from within
the company, to "fix" the problem.