OVO charges for meter reading?

xxxxxxxx
xxxxxxxx Posts: 425
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edited 6 December 2023 at 1:51PM in Energy
TLDR  can OVO charge me £7 to read my meter?

I have probably over £2000 in credit with OVO which I just have not bothered to do anything about. But after today I will.

They have in the past sent threatening letters effectively saying "If you are found to have used more energy than we estimate, you will have to pay it back"  but in a more threatening and demanding manner than my summary.  It is a letter designed to scare and utterly meaningless like TV licensing do.  I simply ignored those letters and ensured I was not being overcharged on my bills.... I mean that is simply obvious that I will owe any balance when an actual meter reading is taken.  Then they sent me a letter saying if I supplied a gas meter reading within 4 weeks they will credit  me with £20... and I thought  "RESULT! that's more like it!" I quickly sent them a meter reading and I did get the £20   ha ha.

For some reason they are always only concerned about the gas reading, not electric.

So the next thing to happen was some months later a guy turns up to check meter reading,  he takes the gas and is about to go and I say "Don't you want the electric?" and he says "No" !!!
This actual reading can't have been that long ago, I would be surprised if more than a year has passed.  and, by the way, the actual reading was entirely in line with the 'customer provided reading' I gave them for £20 some 6 months earlier.

So life returns to normal, especially as I don't seem to get paper bills from them (which they would probably charge for) but I am sure I did not turn off paper bills. I hardly ever log in to my Gmail and when I do, I don't go looking for any energy emails about bills and meter readings that I might have received in the last 6 months.

So today, I get a phone call from OVO and they give me the verbal version of that threat, the same exact words that I will have to pay for any energy I use.... obviously... and I tell them the threat is meaningless because it is obvious.... AND I tell them that I do not appreciate their threatening letters for something THEY are responsible for and their threatening tone on this call.  No apology but instead they pour more fuel on the fire by asking...

Can I take a meter reading and give it to them... "I don't want to crawl around on the floor thank you very much and I am WFH right now.",  I say, "I don't have to give you a reading, if you want one, come and get it." and then they say they charge £7 to come and get a reading.  I said I would be asking the ombudsman about what they just said.

I say to them "You have over £2000 of my money, give it back".  and they say they can only do that if I give a meter reading.

So I have had enough and I have been getting more and more angry about this phone call but the person does not change their approach just repeats the same dulcit tones of implied threats which have no meaning. 

I tell them "because of their attitude, I will be switching, then you will have to repay me my money",  and before they could say it... I said "Yes I know, I will have to give a reading to switch. Your CS sucks and I will be switching."  and I hung up.  



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Comments

  • t0rt0ise
    t0rt0ise Posts: 4,197
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    And did you change suppliers?

    Maybe get smart meters then you never have to think of it again.
  • Netexporter
    Netexporter Posts: 1,022
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    How do you know you are in credit if you don't read the meter?

    Suppliers are obliged to inspect meters, periodically. If you don't want the bother of reading the meter, your supplier will be happy to fit a smart meter, free of charge.
  • xxxxxxxx
    xxxxxxxx Posts: 425
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    edited 6 December 2023 at 11:25AM
    Thank you for this.
    There is no meter reading fee there.  

    What is a self service reward?
  • xxxxxxxx
    xxxxxxxx Posts: 425
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    edited 6 December 2023 at 11:17AM
    It has always been the case, that if the supplier wants an actual reading they come and take one at their own expense.  I have not heard of this changing, which is why I am asking.
  • Netexporter
    Netexporter Posts: 1,022
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    They can charge for appointment readings and can then charge you some more for a broken appointment (about £36, when last I had anything to do with it).
  • xxxxxxxx
    xxxxxxxx Posts: 425
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    edited 6 December 2023 at 11:38AM
    So OVO would like a reading, you can't be inconvenienced to take one yourself; £7 to send someone round to take a reading seems extraordinarily cheap. 
    It is not cheap, if it is not lawful.  So many people are just willing to accept without question what others say to them even if it costs them money?  I just don't understand that attitude.
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