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BG recently tried to put my DD up from £49.50 pm to £79.50 pm - I was so angry I phoned and said that if they didn't bring it back to a reasonable level there and then I was switching without delay. The guy was very helpful and apologetic and basically added up my last four gas bills and divided by 12 and asked if I was happy to pay that amount each month, which I was - worked out to be about £57 pm. He says the computer works out what the new payments should be, so I told him to sack the computer!
But what if the computer is right? I'm thinking that if the comp is telling me my DD should be £165 and not £53, and we agree to pay say...£70 pm, I might be getting £100in arrears each month.
If I have been underpaying, then surely I'm going to have to pay for it someday? Asking them to reduce it is just going to delay that last bill.
The thought of having to find an extra 112 per month is kinda scary, but I'd rather that than a £2,000 bill sent in 18 months time (which is pretty much what the child tax credit people did last week :eek: )
So 'at the end of the day', will you have to pay for everything you use, or will they write some of it off?
You are quite correct. Despite the protestations of some people on this forum the 'computer' for all the utility companies is usually correct.
All it does is take last years consumption as a guide. It then predicts your annual bill, based on that consumption, for this year(after the inevitable price rise!) adds any accumulated debit balance and works out the monthly DD using that total.
There is no doubt that nearly all of the utility companies are at fault in fixing direct debits at an unrealistically low figure in order to obtain customers. Using this as a reason, there have been cases of customers 'negotiating' a write off of some of the accumulated debt; often on the grounds of financial hardship.
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