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  • FIRST POST
    • poots182
    • By poots182 13th Apr 16, 11:11 AM
    • 7Posts
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    poots182
    Extortionate Charges - Gas Supplier
    • #1
    • 13th Apr 16, 11:11 AM
    Extortionate Charges - Gas Supplier 13th Apr 16 at 11:11 AM
    Hello everybody,

    I have followed this forum for a while now but decided to make an account to post a thread about my current experience with Gazprom.

    I hope somebody may be able to help me with my problem.

    I moved into my current address late September 2015, I had a change-over date for Gas on the 3rd November.

    The occupiers previously were in the army, the Electricity supply was held by British Gas Buisness - they attempted to invoice me for a ridiculous amount of money and when I explained the situation that it was not a business address but a residential, they happily amended the costs to the rates I am paying with my current supplier ( GreenStar Energy ).

    British Gas were helpful after some persistence from myself, sorted.

    Gazprom on the other hand attempted to invoice me for £200.42 for 47 days.

    I complained, they apologised and had said there was an error in the system running the account up to the end of December and said they would send me the correct invoice.

    They sent the new invoice for 47 days for the sum of £71.51 inc VAT - again I was frustrated because the "Standing Charge" is set at £1.39 per day, FOUR times more than I pay with my current supplier (30.88p per day).

    I have replied back complaining again at the extortionate charges and explained that this is not a business address and asked them to amend the costs to what I pay currently or at least to something fair.

    Sorry if the formatting looks terrible, do I have a case in contesting this if they continue to be stubborn? Can anybody give me any advice? This is the first time this has happened as we're a newly married couple and is the first time we've moved from one address to another.

    Many Thanks,
    Patrick
Page 1
    • CashStrapped
    • By CashStrapped 13th Apr 16, 11:32 AM
    • 1,086 Posts
    • 599 Thanks
    CashStrapped
    • #2
    • 13th Apr 16, 11:32 AM
    • #2
    • 13th Apr 16, 11:32 AM
    Did you take meter readings for the day you moved in?

    Just to clarify a few details.

    When you moved in the supplier was British Gas business for just electric? Gazprom supplied the gas?

    You then switched electric to Greenstar but are still stuck with Gazprom for gas?
    • poots182
    • By poots182 13th Apr 16, 11:50 AM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    poots182
    • #3
    • 13th Apr 16, 11:50 AM
    • #3
    • 13th Apr 16, 11:50 AM
    Hello,

    Thanks for the reply and sorry for not being more clear, when we moved in British Gas Business had the Electricity and Gazprom supplied the Gas - I then switched both over to Greenstar.

    Meter readings were taken by myself from the move in day and the final day and are actual readings not estimated on the invoice.

    The actual gas usage on the invoice is for £2.32 over the 47 days.

    The standing charge came to £65.78 over the 47 days.

    I'm not stuck with Gazprom, they are just pushing for the payment of £71.51 when it should be less than £20.00.

    Perhaps I'm missing something somewhere?

    Cheers.
    • dogshome
    • By dogshome 13th Apr 16, 12:20 PM
    • 2,925 Posts
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    dogshome
    • #4
    • 13th Apr 16, 12:20 PM
    • #4
    • 13th Apr 16, 12:20 PM
    Gazprom are a business only supplier and why they were supplying the domestic quarters of an army family needs some explaining.

    It could be that Gazproms Daily Standing charge is high because their market is high use businesses and the price per Kwh is lower than the domestic market - What was the cost per Kwh on the 1st gazprom bill?

    Have a look at that first bill from Gazprom, is the Daily Standing charge the same or is it less than on the second invoice ?
    If it's less, then make this the basis of a WRITTEN complaint, also pointing out that the VAT rate for domestic dwellings is 5% if they have charged 20% on the bill
    • Robin9
    • By Robin9 13th Apr 16, 12:36 PM
    • 1,843 Posts
    • 1,202 Thanks
    Robin9
    • #5
    • 13th Apr 16, 12:36 PM
    • #5
    • 13th Apr 16, 12:36 PM
    I too believe Gazprom are business only and do have a high standing charge and (comparatively) low unit rates.

    For those 47 days you were in a deemed contract with Gazprom and the invoice is due and not what you would have been paying with your present supplier.

    PS How did you only have £2.32 worth of gas consumption ?
    • poots182
    • By poots182 13th Apr 16, 12:43 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    poots182
    • #6
    • 13th Apr 16, 12:43 PM
    • #6
    • 13th Apr 16, 12:43 PM
    Hi dogshome,

    I'm pretty sure it was 2 guys from the army living there, most likely in the SAS. The build is 5 years old and they had been there from the beginning and when we moved in it was like no one had ever lived there, appliances all brand new etc (unfurnished rental but they left them behind). I imagine they spent a very minimal amount of time there over those years - who knows lol.

    I have the bills, but they're not very clear.

    Start Date: 18/09/2015
    Start Read: 2969A
    End Date: 03/11/2015
    End Read: 2974A
    Con: 5
    CV: 39.40
    Gas Price: 4.140000
    kWh: 56

    Gas price is the same on both invoices: 4.140000

    Standing Charge was £148.72 for the first invoice (no breakdown of cost).
    Works out at 105 days from 03/11 to 31/12 approx. £1.41 per day.

    Second invoice Standing Charge was £65.78
    Approx. £1.39 per day over 47 days.

    I guess if that is simply 4.14p per kWh then that is also almost double what my rate is now at 2.863p per kWh. It may or may not be cheap - I don't know as I have very minimal experience in doing this kind of thing.

    The VAT on the invoice is at 5%, so at least they understand I am residential.

    Many Thanks,
    Patrick
    • poots182
    • By poots182 13th Apr 16, 12:54 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    poots182
    • #7
    • 13th Apr 16, 12:54 PM
    • #7
    • 13th Apr 16, 12:54 PM
    Hi robin9,

    I think it may be due to the fact we had a honeymoon in this period and we didn't turn the heating on once during that period and also that we barely used the hob - unsure how the water is heated for showers though, I assume electric.

    I do understand that I had a deemed contract, but British Gas were happy to match my rates due to theirs being business related and generally seem to be a lot higher - they reduced their invoice by about 70% so I'm hoping Gazprom do the same.
    • teddysmum
    • By teddysmum 13th Apr 16, 1:47 PM
    • 8,511 Posts
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    teddysmum
    • #8
    • 13th Apr 16, 1:47 PM
    • #8
    • 13th Apr 16, 1:47 PM
    British gas also supply domestic premises, so had another tariff they could apply, but if Gazprom are business only, they will not have this choice.
    • teddysmum
    • By teddysmum 13th Apr 16, 1:50 PM
    • 8,511 Posts
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    teddysmum
    • #9
    • 13th Apr 16, 1:50 PM
    • #9
    • 13th Apr 16, 1:50 PM
    British Gas supplies domestic premises, so has the option of transferring your tariff, but Gazprom being business only, does not have this option .
    • dogshome
    • By dogshome 14th Apr 16, 1:43 PM
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    dogshome
    All very worrying with a distict smell of aged fish.

    Only a guess, but I suspect this house wasn't rented by it's occupiers, but by the Army, and in terms of Utility supplies the Army is a 'Business' and buys it's Power and Gas via a Commercial Contract.

    So which Staff Officer or Senior Civil Servant signed the deal for Gas to be supplied with a Standing Charge of £1.39/£1.41 a day - 5 times the going rate for a domestic dwelling, and 4.14p a KWh - nearly double the domestic rate - When as a high volume user their tariff should be cheaper than domestic, not dearer.

    One wonders - Incompetence? Or something else that really does worry me.
    • teddysmum
    • By teddysmum 14th Apr 16, 3:45 PM
    • 8,511 Posts
    • 5,043 Thanks
    teddysmum
    All very worrying with a distict smell of aged fish.

    Only a guess, but I suspect this house wasn't rented by it's occupiers, but by the Army, and in terms of Utility supplies the Army is a 'Business' and buys it's Power and Gas via a Commercial Contract.

    So which Staff Officer or Senior Civil Servant signed the deal for Gas to be supplied with a Standing Charge of £1.39/£1.41 a day - 5 times the going rate for a domestic dwelling, and 4.14p a KWh - nearly double the domestic rate - When as a high volume user their tariff should be cheaper than domestic, not dearer.

    One wonders - Incompetence? Or something else that really does worry me.
    Originally posted by dogshome

    Perhaps like the NHS which pays inflated amounts for special diet items, which can be bought at a fraction of the price from supermarkets.
    • molerat
    • By molerat 14th Apr 16, 4:22 PM
    • 17,326 Posts
    • 11,517 Thanks
    molerat
    Perhaps like the NHS which pays inflated amounts for special diet items, which can be bought at a fraction of the price from supermarkets.
    Originally posted by teddysmum
    They probably get a decent rate for a national contract but the out of contract prices, as charged to the new occupant, are horrific.
    www.helpforheroes.org.uk/donations.html
    • poots182
    • By poots182 16th Jan 17, 10:59 AM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    poots182
    Old thread I know but to update you all; they wrote off the invoice.

    Many Thanks for the help.
    • Pip87
    • By Pip87 13th Aug 17, 12:23 AM
    • 3 Posts
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    Pip87
    Hi Poots182, I know this is an old thread, but am facing a similar problem with Gazprom and am hoping you may be able to help.

    Like you, I moved into a property in December that used to be a business and had just been converted to a flat. When I moved in I did not know who the gas supplier was as neither the estate agent or landlord knew. I was advised by the letting agents that I would receive a final bill as the change of tenancy had been registered with a third party company who would inform the supplier. So we wait for a bill that doesn't come and I was unable to switch supplier without knowing who currently supplied the property. Being the first property we had rented we were unaware of how to find out the supplier and went through loads of back and forth with the letting agents before they did some research and told us that the suppliers were Gazprom for gas and Opus for the electricity.

    We then set up our switch with Eon in March and were advised they would contact the current suppliers and we wouldn't have to do anything. This worked fine with Opus and the electricity switch took place, however Gazprom stopped the switch from happening. I didn't receive any correspondence from Gazprom after this, and Eon said I would have to call them to ask them to continue with the switch. I spoke to an advisor at Gazprom and explained the situation, he said I would have to email a Change of Tenancy form and that it would take 3 weeks. Whilst speaking to him I raised my concerns that I would be charged business rates and he assured me that I would not be as I was not a business. So I send the form over and reference this assurance in my email. Gazprom then took a month to process the form, and a further month to complete the switch to Eon which finally took place in June.

    Cut to now and I receive 2 bills for over £450 including £247.90 standing charge - £1.34 per day. These bills contain numerous errors; they have charged me for the day after my supply switched, it does not include the flat number in the address, and the final read is based on an estimate that is higher than our meter reads almost 2 months later.

    I have raised a complaint with Gazprom as I don't feel it is fair that I be charged business standing charge rates as I am a resident and not a business. They have obviously said that I have taken up a deemed supply contract, but my point is how can I be liable for a business contract that I was unaware of the rates for, when I am a resident and not aware of the inflated rates that were set. When I moved in I was completely unaware that the property have had a business supplier. If I had known that I would be charged anything like this I would never have used the gas! They have also said they sent me a letter with these rates on after they agreed a switch date with Eon - however I never received this, presumably because they did not have the correct address on it. I feel they handcuffed me into this deemed contract as they stopped my domestic switch from taking place and then took another 3 months to complete the switch.

    Anyway, I was hoping as you had some success in having your bill written off you might be able to advise on the process you went through. I am finding this situation super stressful and would appreciate any advice anyone can offer on how to approach this. Sorry to all for the long post!

    Many thanks.
    • dogshome
    • By dogshome 13th Aug 17, 8:54 AM
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    dogshome
    Gazprom are a dedicated Business supplier ,and should not be supplying a domestic customer.
    That said, as the supplier to a property they can find themselves with a property that has been subject to change of use.

    The Ace card in dealing with Gazprom, is Opus who are also a Business only supplier, yet quickly allowed the transfer to a Domestic supplier.

    WRITE a letter headed Complaint to Gazprom, setting out the timeline of contact dates and the addressing error.
    Asking the specific question as to why if Opus recognised the change of property status, Gazprom have not.
    And as a final paragraph point out that you do not accept their billing rates after the date of the Elec transfer, and will only accept bills based on Eon's Domestic Gas Tariff prices.
    • Pip87
    • By Pip87 13th Aug 17, 11:25 AM
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    Pip87
    Hi dogshome, thanks for your reply, this is really helpful.

    When I first rang Gazprom to complain about the bill I asked them why Opus had made the switch no problem yet they stopped it. They said that it is their policy that they will not allow swicthes without a change of tenancy form first. However, I think this is patchy considering they knew I was trying to switch yet still did not contact the address at all. Do you think that they will continue to challenge that it is their policy to not let people leave without processing a change of tenancy first?

    Also, in the letter do you think I should ask them to iscontinue collection of the bill until the dispute is settled? I can imagine they are going to try and start piling interest on too.

    Thanks so much for your help!
    • dogshome
    • By dogshome 14th Aug 17, 8:27 AM
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    dogshome
    I'm afraid that in the past, your dwelling was used for business and had business suppliers
    The rules that govern Business supply are totally different from Domestic ie Individually negotiated contact prices - Huge price increases at the end of a contract if a new one has not been signed.

    It seems that whilst Opus were willing to accept whatever verbal information you gave to them, Gazprom are not
    You need to furnish them with a copy of your lease agreement, and a copy of your domestic Council Tax bill immediately
    • Pip87
    • By Pip87 5th Sep 17, 12:37 PM
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    Pip87
    Hi all, as an update to the above, I have now sent Gazprom 3 letters and have been told their position hasn't changed since their reply to my first email and to go to the ombudsman. Aside from this last email I haven't received any reply from Gazprom to my letters.The first letter I sent set out the timeline and said that I would only accept charges based on E.ON's domestic rates as suggested, I didn't receive any acknowledgement to this. The second letter was because they sent me another bill for the month after they stopped supplying me, I didn't get a reply to this one either but they did remove these charges from the account. I wrote again this weekend enclosing my council tax bill and tenancy agreement as suggested and also stating that I had found that the flat above which was previously occupied by the same company had no issues switching providers from Gazprom, and were also sent a different change of tenancy form that included information on deemed contracts. I was sent a single page form for company insolvency change of tenancy that didn't include any helpful information at all let alone info on deemed contracts. This form was sent to me by the same customer advisor who told me that I wouldn't be charged business rates back in April.

    I sent all 3 letters by email and post and the third one was the only one they acknowledged saying their position hadn't changed since my initial email a month ago, and that I can go to the ombudsman.I would be really grateful if anyone could offer some advice about this.

    I have today received a second late payment notice from Gazprom, although I had asked them to discontinue collection until the complaint is resolved. What should I do regarding payment? Should I work out what E.ON's rates for the same period would be and part pay it, or write again asking them to put the payment on hold until the ombudsman has reached a decision on the complaint? Any advice would be much appreciated as I'm really at a loss with what to do!
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