British Gas out of contract prices!?

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Energy
9 replies 3.9K views
faheedfaheed Forumite
15 Posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Energy
hi
need some advice plz! we have just bought our house from our previous landlord. He had been using British Gas for electric and gas on a business contract. We bought the property on 23rd April 2013, and decided to go with Swalec, thinking there would not be a problem.(!) After a lot of to-ing and fro-ing, and objections from British Gas, we have just been told today that because we bought the property in April, we would be charged out of contract prices from 23rd April until our new supplier takes over..which having then had a word with Swalec will not be until sometime in June..British Gas's out of contract prices have brought many a tear to our eyes..for the electric standing charge of 90pence PER DAY and unit charge of 22pence. for the gas 121pence standing charge PER DAY and 6pence unit charge!! extortionate seems a pretty word for these prices. Having voiced our concerns at these prices, we were told that nothing further could be done and this apparently is it. IS THIS TRUE? Can they really do this to us? That's £116 in standing charges alone for 55 days!! any advice would be much appreciated!:(

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  • edited 31 May 2013 at 8:17PM
    WywthWywth Forumite
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    edited 31 May 2013 at 8:17PM
    faheed wrote: »
    hi
    need some advice plz! we have just bought our house from our previous landlord. He had been using British Gas for electric and gas on a business contract. We bought the property on 23rd April 2013, and decided to go with Swalec, thinking there would not be a problem.(!) After a lot of to-ing and fro-ing, and objections from British Gas, we have just been told today that because we bought the property in April, we would be charged out of contract prices from 23rd April until our new supplier takes over..which having then had a word with Swalec will not be until sometime in June..British Gas's out of contract prices have brought many a tear to our eyes..for the electric standing charge of 90pence PER DAY and unit charge of 22pence. for the gas 121pence standing charge PER DAY and 6pence unit charge!! extortionate seems a pretty word for these prices. Having voiced our concerns at these prices, we were told that nothing further could be done and this apparently is it. IS THIS TRUE? Can they really do this to us? That's £116 in standing charges alone for 55 days!! any advice would be much appreciated!:(

    Yes, that is correct. (I've not checked the prices - you can confirn that for yourself here:
    http://www.britishgas.co.uk/business/products-and-services/our-rates.html )

    At least its at the low consumption time of year :)
  • chanz4chanz4 Forumite
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    Yes if its supplied by BG business
    Don't put your trust into an Experian score - it is not a number any bank will ever use & it is generally a waste of money to purchase it. They are also selling you insurance you dont need.
  • dogshomedogshome Forumite
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    The key here the date you registered your ownership with the Local Authority and their subsequent paperwork chargeing you domestic rates.

    BG Business had a contract with the previous owner, not you, and from the day the properties status changed to residential, BG Bus. should not be supplying you .

    However because of the nature 'deemed' contract roll-overs with new occupiers there was no other supplier when you moved in, but that does not mean you should pay Business Out-of-Contract prices till you Switch.

    WRITE to BG Bus. enclosing a copy of the Local Authorities paperwork to prove you are a domestic customer, advising them that whilst you are content to pay them for Utility supplies until your Switch is complete, you will only accept bills based on a Domestic tariff, ( Their sister companies Standard tarrif), with VAT charged at 5%
  • chanz4chanz4 Forumite
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    dogshome wrote: »
    The key here the date you registered your ownership with the Local Authority and their subsequent paperwork chargeing you domestic rates.

    BG Business had a contract with the previous owner, not you, and from the day the properties status changed to residential, BG Bus. should not be supplying you .

    However because of the nature 'deemed' contract roll-overs with new occupiers there was no other supplier when you moved in, but that does not mean you should pay Business Out-of-Contract prices till you Switch.

    WRITE to BG Bus. enclosing a copy of the Local Authorities paperwork to prove you are a domestic customer, advising them that whilst you are content to pay them for Utility supplies until your Switch is complete, you will only accept bills based on a Domestic tariff, ( Their sister companies Standard tarrif), with VAT charged at 5%

    Doesn't work like that, even though bg are a whole company bg business and domestic are seperate
    Don't put your trust into an Experian score - it is not a number any bank will ever use & it is generally a waste of money to purchase it. They are also selling you insurance you dont need.
  • edited 28 December 2013 at 4:06PM
    AndyWhite007AndyWhite007 Forumite
    1 Post
    edited 28 December 2013 at 4:06PM
    We moved house in Jan '13. I read my old house gas meter and gave the reading to NPower. I then gave the new meter reading for the new house to NPower who continued our gas account with them. The house we bought was with British Gas Business – as a rental house. We bought our house for our own home.The old owner gave a 'final meter reading' to British Gas Business and closed the account with them. We now receive very aggressive and threatening letters from British Gas Business who want us to pay £415 for being 'Out of Contract' (i.e.the gas used for 30 days whilst NPower took on the supply). The gas used should be about £35 - which we would be happy to pay. The rest is purely British Gas charging 'whatever they like'. I've never had a contract with British Gas or received any notification that they were the previous gas supplier. Now they threaten legal action and reduced credit rating etc. I believe they may be acting illegally by not contacting the new owner (i.e. a letter to ‘The occupier’ at least informing them of the cost) or at the very least they are using abusive threats to frighten people to paying whatever charges British Gas business dream up.
  • dogshomedogshome Forumite
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    It's a pity that faheed who originated this thread in May 2013, did not report back on the Success or Failure of challangeing BG with copy documents showing their residential status for Council Tax.

    I suggest you follow the route in Post 4, but up the anti so far as BG is concerned by sending a copy of the letter and all other BG correspondece to Ofgem the regulator, and advise BG in your letter that you have done so
  • faheedfaheed Forumite
    15 Posts
    hi
    In the end we had to pay the out of contract fees. but for some reason, we were credited about £100! I think it is mostly upto the person who deals with your call and the rapport you have with them. As I recall, the last person we spoke with was lovely and very willing to help; perhaps this was why we had the monies refunded to us!
  • edited 14 January 2014 at 1:26PM
    dogshomedogshome Forumite
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    edited 14 January 2014 at 1:26PM
    Hi faheed, thanks for reporting back.

    It seems that along with another recent poster, you have fallen into a Black Hole in the Privatisation Act legislation whereby the planners gave no thought to the possibility of a properties use changeing from Business premises to Domestic occupation.

    I want to write to Ofgem to to get their view on the matter, and hopefully get them to issue a guideline to suppliers as how to handle the problem in future, and would ask if you would be so kind as to give the following details:
    1) On the bills BG issued, was the VAT charged at 5% or 20% ?
    2) What were the actual Kwh's of Gas & Elec charged on the bill(s) and were they and the daily charges, charged at the rates you gave in Post #1 ?
  • faheedfaheed Forumite
    15 Posts
    Hi
    I'm so sorry but we had a clearout just before the Christmas holidays and all paperwork not needed was shredded. From what I remember I think we were charged domestic rate VAT of 5%. but I cannot be too sure. And we were definitely charged the rate advertised, but we don't know why we were refunded approximately £100. hope that helps.
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