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  • FIRST POST
    • Pandora
    • By Pandora 3rd Dec 17, 12:33 AM
    • 258Posts
    • 1,227Thanks
    Pandora
    Changing from prepay to normal meters but there may be a problem!!
    • #1
    • 3rd Dec 17, 12:33 AM
    Changing from prepay to normal meters but there may be a problem!! 3rd Dec 17 at 12:33 AM
    Hi all, just wrote an essay with ALL the details but then realised I was just ranting (as I'm furious!!) but as you don't need to read all that, here are the basics instead!! (Tried to keep it as short as possible but I know there are details you might need in order to help!!)

    Moved house and found out I had prepayment meters for both gas and electricity with British Gas. Rang and asked about getting them changed to 'normal' ones and they said they would switch me for free as long as I passed a credit check. No problems with my credit but obviously needed to wait until all my address details were updated and registered to vote at the new place etc.

    In the meantime I was waiting for my final bill from Scottish Power. I was very busy with a new job, unpacking, a holiday and my birthday etc so wasn't as vigilant as I usually am about checking bank statements etc. Realised a couple of months later that I hadn't had a final bill and even worse, they were still taking my monthly direct debit out!! Checked my online SP account and not only had they not closed the account, they were still billing me even though I didn't live there. Obviously I called, they apologised, said they would update the last meter reading as the final one, cancel the additional charges and DD and I would get my final bill which would most likely have a large credit due to the additional payments they had taken. The following month, the DD came out again and they were STILL adding charges to the bill!! Official complaint logged, assured it would be closed etc etc. Next month, the DD gets taken AGAIN so obviously I'm back on the phone and absolutely furious!! Got told my complaint was being dealt with but could take another 5-6 weeks. At this point I cancelled the DD from my end - yes, I should have done this earlier but never had this problem before and stupidly believed they would do what they said and cancel it from their end!

    They then said there was a problem with the billing due to wrong information on the national database and 6 weeks later they rang to say they were still working on getting it sorted. Only at this point did they tell me I could claim back the DD's they had taken after I had moved out although they warned me that the way the bills looked if I did that I would probably owe them about £500!!!!! I rang my bank, got my money back and then just had to wait.

    All this time I'm still stuck on the prepayment meters with BG as SP wouldn't update my address as I wasn't moving my supply and there was an ongoing billing dispute!!

    Eventually, they said it was sorted but due to the errors on the database they had to redo my bills for the whole time I had been with them and I wouldn't be billed according to the nice cheap deal which was the reason I switched to them in the first place! I got no information on the rate they were billing me at and got a final bill saying I still owed them over £150. At this point (7 months after providing them with my final meter readings!!) I refused to pay that much and just demanded compensation for the hours and hours of phone calls and stress. They reduced the bill to £100 which I just agreed to as I was so tired of fighting with them. Don't have a random £100 just laying around so they agreed to a £10 a month payment plan.

    They asked if I wanted to set up a DD at which point I burst out laughing, swore profusely and said I would rather trust Hitler with my DD's than them!!!!

    So now, I'm paying them £10 a month and am STILL on the prepayment meters with BG which are costing me an absolute fortune and that's before I get into the unsafe cellar that they are in!!

    Start doing some research online about switching and stumble across this sites guide to switching from prepayment to normal meters. It says that if you have/had a debt with another energy company within the last year then BG (and a lot of companies) won't switch your meters. I'm absolutely heartbroken and absolutely furious as this debt isn't my fault - it's SP that have f***ed up - but it means I'm potentially stuck with these ridiculously expensive meters for another year

    I'll be ringing BG asap to see what they say but does anyone have any advice on what I can do/say to make them disregard the problem/debt caused by SP's incompetence? I'm sick of having to run to the shop to top up then wade through a wet cellar, wearing a head torch and have to climb onto random piles of stuff which feel like one wrong move and I'm going to break my ankle Landlord says they only have to provide access to the meters not make where they are 'nice' (or even safe apparently!!)

    Sorry it's so long (guess I just can't help but rant a little!!) but I really could do with some advice/tips/knowledge/experience!!

    Thanks in advance
    DFW Nerd 145
    LBM - June 2006 - DEBTS - £19,261.08
    Nov 2017 - £10,644.92!!
    Debt free date - 13/08/2022 - the day before I turn 40!!!!!
    Grocery Challenge - Dec 2017 £30.63/£150
Page 1
    • Dobbibill
    • By Dobbibill 3rd Dec 17, 9:46 AM
    • 2,538 Posts
    • 3,631 Thanks
    Dobbibill
    • #2
    • 3rd Dec 17, 9:46 AM
    • #2
    • 3rd Dec 17, 9:46 AM
    Hi Pandora,

    Did you provide closing meter readings with SP when you left the previous property?

    Clawing the money back the DD, the best course of action would be to have kept that money so you are able to pay off the debt in one go and move on.

    This would allow you to then move suppliers - BG may conduct a credit search for a credit meter but once you have been with EDF for 3 months, it appears they don't.

    https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/utilities/switch-prepaid-gas-electricity

    I'm sure some of the more knowledgeable members will be along shortly to provide tailored advice.
    I'm a Board Guide on the Energy, Student Money Saving, UK Armed Forces and
    Local Money Saving - Wales boards. I'm a volunteer to help the boards run smoothly, and I can move and merge posts there.
    Board guides are not moderators and don't read every post. If you spot an abusive or illegal post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com. Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com.


    A person who never made a mistake, never tried anything new.
    • Pandora
    • By Pandora 3rd Dec 17, 3:10 PM
    • 258 Posts
    • 1,227 Thanks
    Pandora
    • #3
    • 3rd Dec 17, 3:10 PM
    • #3
    • 3rd Dec 17, 3:10 PM
    Thanks Dobbibill. Yeah, I provided my final meter reading about an hour after I took it, basically once I had left the old place and gone and sat down in my new place. They even entered that meter reading onto my account but didn't close it
    Would have loved to have kept the DD money aside but I needed it to pay my rent and other bills as I was getting dangerously close to the limit on my overdraft as obviously I was paying for energy twice - the old DD's and in the new place - which I definitely couldn't afford to do.
    Will have a look at EDF - thanks
    DFW Nerd 145
    LBM - June 2006 - DEBTS - £19,261.08
    Nov 2017 - £10,644.92!!
    Debt free date - 13/08/2022 - the day before I turn 40!!!!!
    Grocery Challenge - Dec 2017 £30.63/£150
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