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    • emdoug
    • By emdoug 2nd Oct 17, 10:31 AM
    • 26Posts
    • 14Thanks
    emdoug
    Pre-paid gas meter New tenant help
    • #1
    • 2nd Oct 17, 10:31 AM
    Pre-paid gas meter New tenant help 2nd Oct 17 at 10:31 AM
    I moved into a new property over the weekend which has a prepaid gas meter with Brittish Gas, Topped up the card with £30 put it in the meter and it went straight down to £7 balance. Contacted landlord advised she would reinstate the amount taken (shes been using the property for 2 weeks decorating and getting the property all sorted) We put the heating on for 2 hours to dry some clothes checked meter the next morning we was 75p in debt???

    After speaking with my sister she thinks there could be a large debt from previous tenant also a letter from the council addressed to prev tenant was in a drawer opened stating over £1000 council tax debt.

    contacted landlord explained we think theres a large gas debt and also mentioned council tax debt. Landlord contacted prev tenant who explained the council tax debt is a dispute as hes been charged more than he should of? tenant also told landlord he is a 'Gas Man' and its impossible to change the meter to a credit meter as it was installed by the government and advised there is no debt on the gas.

    So are we allowed to change the meter to a credit meter? is the prev tenant telling the truth? and is it normal to use £8 of gas for having heating on for 2 hours?
Page 1
    • matelodave
    • By matelodave 2nd Oct 17, 11:33 AM
    • 3,189 Posts
    • 1,907 Thanks
    matelodave
    • #2
    • 2nd Oct 17, 11:33 AM
    • #2
    • 2nd Oct 17, 11:33 AM
    Have you just taken over the prepay key or have you requested one from the gas supplier yourself.

    You should register with the existing gas and leccy supplier yourself - do it today -and get your own prepay key which should reset the meter as you are probably paying off the previous tenant's arrears if you are using the old prepay key.

    As you are paying for the gas then it's up to you which supplier you use and whether you want acredit meter or not although as a tenant you may have to re-instate a prepay meter when your tenancy ends - what does your tenancy agreement say.

    Once you've registered with the existing supplier and set up an account you can then decide which supplier you want and whether you want to swap to a credit meter. You can get better cheaper deals with a credit meter, prepay can be very expensive especially if you end up paying off someone elses arrears as well.
    Last edited by matelodave; 02-10-2017 at 11:40 AM.
    Love makes the world go round - beer make it go round even faster
    • House Martin
    • By House Martin 2nd Oct 17, 2:08 PM
    • 745 Posts
    • 637 Thanks
    House Martin
    • #3
    • 2nd Oct 17, 2:08 PM
    • #3
    • 2nd Oct 17, 2:08 PM
    I take it that the meter is a key meter. Actaris or Landis and Gyr are the most popular ones I see.
    True debt, as opposed to standing charges debts is on screen "S " on the meter with "T " showing the weekly repay .There could be as much as £16 a week coming off depending on the amount of debt loaded on the meter.(could be vice versa on S and T )
    Standing charge debts will accumulate as a negative on screen A , the first screen.
    You can only access screens "S " and "T " with the key inserted.
    As matelotdave says, a new key is needed in your name and registered to you which should clear the weekly debts and build up of standing charges.
    Gas prepayment card meter has the debt on screen 26. This should be available to see without inserting card.Hold down the red button till it beeps then scroll through the various screens
    Last edited by House Martin; 02-10-2017 at 6:32 PM.
    • emdoug
    • By emdoug 2nd Oct 17, 2:44 PM
    • 26 Posts
    • 14 Thanks
    emdoug
    • #4
    • 2nd Oct 17, 2:44 PM
    • #4
    • 2nd Oct 17, 2:44 PM
    Thanks both, Landlord told us to just use the card that was there and she would sort the rest with Brittish gas but I'm going to call them myself and get it all sorted. hopefully they will let us change to a credit meter
    • matelodave
    • By matelodave 2nd Oct 17, 3:56 PM
    • 3,189 Posts
    • 1,907 Thanks
    matelodave
    • #5
    • 2nd Oct 17, 3:56 PM
    • #5
    • 2nd Oct 17, 3:56 PM
    Never let the landlord or even letting agent sort it out - always do it yourself.

    You then know that it's been done properly and that you haven't been slipped onto a unfavourable tariff/supplier. Make sure it's you that's in control and not someone else.

    It's also worth keeping a record of your consumption on a weekly or monthly basis (set up a simple spreadsheet) or even a notebook. That way you'll get an idea of what you are using and when, You can then see where you can make savings.

    If you get onto a credit meter, still keep your own records and send readings into your supplier every month and never accept an estimated bill, get it corrected immediately.

    Keep on top of your bills and finances and you'll avoid problems in the future
    Love makes the world go round - beer make it go round even faster
    • Raxiel
    • By Raxiel 2nd Oct 17, 4:54 PM
    • 487 Posts
    • 253 Thanks
    Raxiel
    • #6
    • 2nd Oct 17, 4:54 PM
    • #6
    • 2nd Oct 17, 4:54 PM
    A word of Warning about British Gas. They will do a hard credit search if and when you apply for a change to credit meters, and regardless of your 'credit score' they will possibly turn you down based on their own criteria.

    If your credit file doesn't have a history of a well managed energy account,either because you've never had an account in your own name before or your previous supplier didn't report your account to the CRA's (and many don't) they will almost certainly say no.

    If you don't mind getting a hard search on your file it doesn't hurt to call BG and ask, but if you do mind (or you ask and they say no) you can switch supplier to a company that doesn't do credit checks and then ask them to switch the meter. EDF is usually the go-to recommendation for this, there may be others. At that point you can either choose to stay with them or shop around for the best credit tariff and switch again.

    Speak with your landlady to check they are happy for you to make the swap. Legally I'm not sure they can stop you, but they may be able to insist you have them swapped back at the end of the tenancy (Hopefully they won't care). Either way the tenancy agreement probably stipulates something along the lines of "Tenants must seek the landlords permission, but that permission shall not be unreasonably withheld"
    Worth doing as a courtesy anyway.
    • Anthorn
    • By Anthorn 12th Oct 17, 12:45 PM
    • 3,294 Posts
    • 847 Thanks
    Anthorn
    • #7
    • 12th Oct 17, 12:45 PM
    • #7
    • 12th Oct 17, 12:45 PM
    Similar problem. I'm moving into a different property which currently has British Gas prepay smart meters for both gas and electricity. Personally I would have thought that a smart meter is a smart meter is a smart meter but apparently there are smart meters and prepay smart meters.

    The process for me is that when I move in, British Gas will not change the meter and will instead provide me with a ref number to use to buy credit. If I switch which I will do, it's up to the new supplier to change the meter and I have to argue with them about it.

    Not really all that good.
    • SwanJon
    • By SwanJon 13th Oct 17, 9:36 AM
    • 2,378 Posts
    • 925 Thanks
    SwanJon
    • #8
    • 13th Oct 17, 9:36 AM
    • #8
    • 13th Oct 17, 9:36 AM
    but apparently there are smart meters and prepay smart meters.
    Originally posted by Anthorn
    I think the meters can handle being both, but there's a software/system snag about moving from one to the other. Except...
    The process for me is that when I move in, British Gas will not change the meter and will instead provide me with a ref number to use to buy credit. If I switch which I will do, it's up to the new supplier to change the meter and I have to argue with them about it.
    Originally posted by Anthorn


    You should also get a top up card the shop can swipe, or top up online etc.


    ...when you change suppliers with a prepayment smart meter the losing supplier should convert it to 'credit mode' - it'll probably stop working as a smart meter too at this point. (one day suppliers will use the same system). Not sure why this is possible, but switching modes with the same supplier is so hard.
    • badmemory
    • By badmemory 13th Oct 17, 3:27 PM
    • 1,071 Posts
    • 1,138 Thanks
    badmemory
    • #9
    • 13th Oct 17, 3:27 PM
    • #9
    • 13th Oct 17, 3:27 PM
    ...



    (one day suppliers will use the same system).
    Originally posted by SwanJon

    Actually due to their combined incompetence I doubt this will ever actually happen.
    • Anthorn
    • By Anthorn 5th Dec 17, 2:11 PM
    • 3,294 Posts
    • 847 Thanks
    Anthorn
    I think the meters can handle being both, but there's a software/system snag about moving from one to the other. Except...




    You should also get a top up card the shop can swipe, or top up online etc.


    ...when you change suppliers with a prepayment smart meter the losing supplier should convert it to 'credit mode' - it'll probably stop working as a smart meter too at this point. (one day suppliers will use the same system). Not sure why this is possible, but switching modes with the same supplier is so hard.
    Originally posted by SwanJon
    The information I provided in my previous post was in fact wrong mainly because the information provided to me was wrong. There is in fact no need to physically change the BG smart PAYG meter. When the supply is switched to a new supplier BG remotely change the meter to credit mode and then leave it to the new supplier to decide on how to charge. A problem then lies with the new supplier not being able to read the BG smart meter.

    For me the process was simple: I phoned BG who gave me an account for each of gas and electricity. When I received my account numbers by email I phoned BG again and registered for an online account and then installed the mobile app and with that bought credit. Then I switched to Scottish Power and the switch proceeded as usual with BG confirming that the meters would be switched to credit mode.

    Right now I still have the same smart meters and on Scottish Power credit account. Probably the one and only problem if it can be called a problem is that I have to provide Scottish Power with the meter readings every month which is in itself pretty simple.
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