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  • FIRST POST
    • WattNext
    • By WattNext 2nd Oct 17, 11:57 AM
    • 58Posts
    • 8Thanks
    WattNext
    52 Days to get my £200+ credit back, FU
    • #1
    • 2nd Oct 17, 11:57 AM
    52 Days to get my £200+ credit back, FU 2nd Oct 17 at 11:57 AM
    On 18th Sep 2017 I switched from First Utility to Avro Energy. I asked Avro was their switching delay the same. No reply except to say that it takes up to 3 wks for the final reading to be logged with an independent energy database.

    My online chat with First Utility Carlos 2/10/17 10:30am

    I left you on 18/9/17 but have you have taken a £60 direct debit from me. Why did you do this

    Carlos: I can see that there was still a Fixed Direct Debit set up so the payment was pulled on the 25th of September. I'm really sorry about this. I can see your account is still waiting for the final bill to be produced, so I've changed your Direct Debit to a variable one so that no payment will be taken until the final bill is ready and only if there would be any outstanding amount. If any credit will remain on your account after the final bill, we will issue you with a refund. The bill should be ready within 4-6 weeks from your supply end date. Once the bill will be ready we can request a refund and it will reach your account within 10 working days from the day of request. It will be by BACS so if possible, please do not cancel your Direct Debit until all is done and the remaining credit will reach your account.

    Why didn't you advise that I needed to change to a variable direct debit to stop the payment going out

    Carlos: I'm really sorry for this. Usually the payment method would automatically be changed to variable direct debit.

    So I'm alright telling Money saving expert energy forum what you are doing?

    Carlos: I'm sorry to hear that you feel this way. Your payment method has now been changed to variable direct debit so that no payment will be taken until the final bill is ready and only if there would be any outstanding amount.

    Its not your personal fault Carlos. but your customers need to know. Bye.
    Last edited by WattNext; 02-10-2017 at 11:58 AM. Reason: Clarity
Page 1
    • matelodave
    • By matelodave 2nd Oct 17, 1:19 PM
    • 3,188 Posts
    • 1,905 Thanks
    matelodave
    • #2
    • 2nd Oct 17, 1:19 PM
    • #2
    • 2nd Oct 17, 1:19 PM
    and what is your point?
    Love makes the world go round - beer make it go round even faster
    • Swipe
    • By Swipe 2nd Oct 17, 9:23 PM
    • 2,221 Posts
    • 1,175 Thanks
    Swipe
    • #3
    • 2nd Oct 17, 9:23 PM
    • #3
    • 2nd Oct 17, 9:23 PM
    They told me 4-6 weeks. It took about 14 days in the end. They also took my direct debit after my switch but got it back in the refund of my final bill. It wasn't a big deal either because my new supplier didn't take their DD until the start of the second month.
    • WattNext
    • By WattNext 4th Oct 17, 2:01 PM
    • 58 Posts
    • 8 Thanks
    WattNext
    • #4
    • 4th Oct 17, 2:01 PM
    Slow payback
    • #4
    • 4th Oct 17, 2:01 PM
    and what is your point?
    Originally posted by matelodave
    The switch itself used to take weeks and they reduced it to 17 days but the refund of credit got left behind and still takes considerably longer.
    • WattNext
    • By WattNext 4th Oct 17, 2:06 PM
    • 58 Posts
    • 8 Thanks
    WattNext
    • #5
    • 4th Oct 17, 2:06 PM
    Foreplay
    • #5
    • 4th Oct 17, 2:06 PM
    ...It wasn't a big deal either because my new supplier didn't take their DD until the start of the second month.
    Originally posted by Swipe
    Avro took the direct debit ahead of the supply start date. That meant that I paid twice in the same month. Families struggling to pay their energy bills need any credit returning earlier.
    • WattNext
    • By WattNext 24th Oct 17, 12:01 PM
    • 58 Posts
    • 8 Thanks
    WattNext
    • #6
    • 24th Oct 17, 12:01 PM
    End Game
    • #6
    • 24th Oct 17, 12:01 PM
    Switch from First Utility Timeline

    • Switched to New Energy Supplier.......18/08/2017 00 Days
    • Start New Energy Supplier................19/09/2017 32 Days
    • First Utility Final Bill.........................10/10/2017 21 Days
    • Email Notice Returning Credit.............13/10/2017 03 Days
    • Credit Returned to Bank....................24/10/2017 11 Days
    • Switch Completion Delay = 67 Days
    Have been with First Utility for 4 years, their billing is very accurate and have not had 'any' problems. Would not hesitate to return to them.
    • Hengus
    • By Hengus 24th Oct 17, 12:25 PM
    • 4,662 Posts
    • 2,830 Thanks
    Hengus
    • #7
    • 24th Oct 17, 12:25 PM
    • #7
    • 24th Oct 17, 12:25 PM
    Under EU Law, and Supply Licence Conditions, energy suppliers have 6 weeks from the day of the actual transfer of your supply to produce your Final Bill. Repayment of any credit will then follow.
    • HDRW
    • By HDRW 24th Oct 17, 4:57 PM
    • 5 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    HDRW
    • #8
    • 24th Oct 17, 4:57 PM
    • #8
    • 24th Oct 17, 4:57 PM
    I switched on the 26th September, and was told it could take "up to 28 days" to get the reading validated "by the industry". Nobody seems to want to put at name to this industry body! Today is day 28, and I called to see what's happening: They have the Gas reading but not Electicity. They apologised that I was told 28 days and don't know how much longer it will be! The issue is that I was *way* overpaid with the old supplier (about 3x my monthly payment), I had to leave the Direct Debit running "or we'll charge you £12 for non-payment" despite the fact that the payment was taken several days after I left them, and I had to pay the new supplier immediately. So not only have I paid twice for this month, but that and the overpayment is sitting nicely in their bank account - and it's *my* money! I'm broke and I need it back. Howcome this unidentified Industry body is so slow at checking the meter readings? It should be about ten lines of code in a program to check whether the figures are reasonable compared with previously. Nobody knows when my figures will be validated, and apparently nobody can contact anyone to find out. So what gives?
    • Hengus
    • By Hengus 24th Oct 17, 5:53 PM
    • 4,662 Posts
    • 2,830 Thanks
    Hengus
    • #9
    • 24th Oct 17, 5:53 PM
    • #9
    • 24th Oct 17, 5:53 PM
    I switched on the 26th September, and was told it could take "up to 28 days" to get the reading validated "by the industry". Nobody seems to want to put at name to this industry body! Today is day 28, and I called to see what's happening: They have the Gas reading but not Electicity. They apologised that I was told 28 days and don't know how much longer it will be! The issue is that I was *way* overpaid with the old supplier (about 3x my monthly payment), I had to leave the Direct Debit running "or we'll charge you £12 for non-payment" despite the fact that the payment was taken several days after I left them, and I had to pay the new supplier immediately. So not only have I paid twice for this month, but that and the overpayment is sitting nicely in their bank account - and it's *my* money! I'm broke and I need it back. Howcome this unidentified Industry body is so slow at checking the meter readings? It should be about ten lines of code in a program to check whether the figures are reasonable compared with previously. Nobody knows when my figures will be validated, and apparently nobody can contact anyone to find out. So what gives?
    Originally posted by HDRW
    The industry third party (Data Collectors) that verifies all meter readings on a switch has been in existence for years. It doesnít take 28 days: 5 to 10 days is the norm. Gas transfer meter reading validation involving an IGT used to take a little longer than electricity but the process was automated earlier this year (Project NEXUS).

    If your losing supplier hasnít received industry validated meter readings within 6 weeks of the transfer, it will usually contact the gaining supplier on your behalf. That said, this forum is full of complaints about suppliers taking 6 weeks to raise a Final Bill. I will leave it to you to work out why this might be the case.
    • Hengus
    • By Hengus 24th Oct 17, 5:55 PM
    • 4,662 Posts
    • 2,830 Thanks
    Hengus
    Avro took the direct debit ahead of the supply start date. That meant that I paid twice in the same month. Families struggling to pay their energy bills need any credit returning earlier.
    Originally posted by WattNext
    Write to consumeraffairs@ofgem.gov.uk and make the point.
    • MothballsWallet
    • By MothballsWallet 24th Oct 17, 6:10 PM
    • 11,584 Posts
    • 15,179 Thanks
    MothballsWallet
    Write to consumeraffairs@ofgem.gov.uk and make the point.
    Originally posted by Hengus
    As long as the OP doesn't expect Ofgem to care.
    Married to an immigrant.
    I live in the UK City of Culture 2021
    Always ask yourself one question: What would Gibbs do?
    • Hengus
    • By Hengus 24th Oct 17, 6:20 PM
    • 4,662 Posts
    • 2,830 Thanks
    Hengus
    As long as the OP doesn't expect Ofgem to care.
    Originally posted by MothballsWallet
    A fair point - but if people donít bother telling Ofgem what does and doesnít work, then they will never put the consumer first. Energy industry procedures are in my opinion similar to what I would expect to see in a third-World country. They are no longer fit for purpose. There is no point in Ofgem pushing for one day switching if it leaves the underpinning industry procedures unchanged.
    • HDRW
    • By HDRW 27th Oct 17, 10:31 AM
    • 5 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    HDRW
    Hengus, Thanks for your reply, but I'm a little confused...
    The industry third party (Data Collectors) that verifies all meter readings on a switch has been in existence for years. It doesnít take 28 days: 5 to 10 days is the norm. Gas transfer meter reading validation involving an IGT used to take a little longer than electricity but the process was automated earlier this year (Project NEXUS).
    Originally posted by Hengus
    So if it only takes up to 10 days, why did the "old" supplier say they've had the gas, but not the electrical readings, at 28 days? They also said "they" send them to both old and new suppliers, and the new supplier said they hadn't had them back either, at 28 days from switchover (and presumably not yet, at 31).
    If your losing supplier hasnít received industry validated meter readings within 6 weeks of the transfer, it will usually contact the gaining supplier on your behalf. That said, this forum is full of complaints about suppliers taking 6 weeks to raise a Final Bill. I will leave it to you to work out why this might be the case.
    Originally posted by Hengus
    Six weeks??? How does this fit with your "5 to 10 days" above? When speaking to the old supplier I asked how much time it takes to produce the closing bill when they have the readings - he said: "It takes no time at all - I could do it for you now if I had the readings".
    What annoys me is that if this was properly computerised, once the data is entered it would take a fraction of a second to do the calculations and produce a Go/No Go result. I know this because in another life I wrote a program to do meter-reading validations for a gas shipper, and that's much more complicated as you have the calculation of kWh from cubic feet or metres, and also that some "corrector meters" give two readings, one raw volume, and another corrected for pressure and temperature, so validating that they make sense in relation to each other has to be done as well. Electricity has no such issues!
    • Hengus
    • By Hengus 27th Oct 17, 2:26 PM
    • 4,662 Posts
    • 2,830 Thanks
    Hengus
    Hengus, Thanks for your reply, but I'm a little confused...
    So if it only takes up to 10 days, why did the "old" supplier say they've had the gas, but not the electrical readings, at 28 days? They also said "they" send them to both old and new suppliers, and the new supplier said they hadn't had them back either, at 28 days from switchover (and presumably not yet, at 31).

    Six weeks??? How does this fit with your "5 to 10 days" above? When speaking to the old supplier I asked how much time it takes to produce the closing bill when they have the readings - he said: "It takes no time at all - I could do it for you now if I had the readings".
    What annoys me is that if this was properly computerised, once the data is entered it would take a fraction of a second to do the calculations and produce a Go/No Go result. I know this because in another life I wrote a program to do meter-reading validations for a gas shipper, and that's much more complicated as you have the calculation of kWh from cubic feet or metres, and also that some "corrector meters" give two readings, one raw volume, and another corrected for pressure and temperature, so validating that they make sense in relation to each other has to be done as well. Electricity has no such issues!
    Originally posted by HDRW
    Six weeks is the period allowed for by Ofgem. To their credit, most losing suppliers do Bill and repay final credit as soon as they receive validated meter readings. A lot of the smaller suppliers play the regulation to the day for cash flow reasons. They will no doubt argue that if they do not have to borrow as much money then this can be reflected in terms of lower prices to customers. Gas meter readings can take longer to validate as there are more parties involved; eg, independent gas transporters.
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