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Symbio Energy feedback

edited 4 February 2019 at 8:00PM in Energy
1.8K replies 100.3K views
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  • sprocket1sprocket1 Forumite
    12 posts
    10 Posts Second Anniversary
    MoneySaving Newbie
    I was reasonably happy as all problems had been sorted on the phone and left a positive review on Trustpilot earlier today. Less happy now as they have just notified me of a change to their terms and conditions so I now have to pay a month in advance instead of in arrears. I had deliberately picked a slightly more expensive tariff instead of their 2 months in advance tariff to avoid all the problems of trying to recover a credit balance if they go bust.
  • TafrockTafrock Forumite
    630 posts
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    The new arrangement as I understand it has you paying a fixed monthly fee. Around two weeks later you are sent a bill and what you have paid offsets the bill. Therefore it's only a matter of a fortnight advance payment. This is pretty much what all other electricity companies do. Yes I accept its payment in advance but it's not two or three months. Seems fair enough to me
  • DobbibillDobbibill Forumite, Board Guide
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    UPDATE

    1st DD has left this morning. I was expecting my projected amount to leave but the amount they have collected is the amount shown on my bill a week or so ago. This is only 37% of what I expected to be collected.

    I'm still not concerned as the money will just sit in the account, waiting to be collected.

    I will keep you all updated..........to be continued!
    Dobbi
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  • TafrockTafrock Forumite
    630 posts
    500 Posts Second Anniversary
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    This is what the new terms and conditions say dobbibill. My direct debit also left this morning (collector sym energy bill). It was just like yours for the actual amount on latest bill. Also a meagre amount for myself just £6.53 as it was only for the period 24th June to May 1st

    Terms and conditions say next amount will be the monthly amount you agreed. It will then be used to offset your next bill which will be issued end of month

    Here's the an excerpt from the actual email I received explaining it

    "In May, you will receive your bill for April’s electricity consumption and the Direct debit payment for this will be taken from your account by the 15th May unless otherwise arranged. We will then request another Direct Debit for the May electricity consumption. This will be taken from your account on or around the 3rd June 2019. This will be the May advance payment and will be referenced electricity advance.

    In mid-June 2019, we will issue your May 2019 energy bill. Thereafter, you will receive an energy bill on a normal monthly basis thereafter, with the next energy bill issued in the first week of July 2019 and payment taken mid-July 2019."
  • MABLEMABLE Forumite
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    Tafrock wrote: »
    This is what the new terms and conditions say dobbibill. My direct debit also left this morning (collector sym energy bill). It was just like yours for the actual amount on latest bill. Also a meagre amount for myself just £6.53 as it was only for the period 24th June to May 1st

    Terms and conditions say next amount will be the monthly amount you agreed. It will then be used to offset your next bill which will be issued end of month

    Here's the an excerpt from the actual email I received explaining it

    "In May, you will receive your bill for April’s electricity consumption and the Direct debit payment for this will be taken from your account by the 15th May unless otherwise arranged. We will then request another Direct Debit for the May electricity consumption. This will be taken from your account on or around the 3rd June 2019. This will be the May advance payment and will be referenced electricity advance.

    In mid-June 2019, we will issue your May 2019 energy bill. Thereafter, you will receive an energy bill on a normal monthly basis thereafter, with the next energy bill issued in the first week of July 2019 and payment taken mid-July 2019."

    I joined on the 12 April and my bill was £33.42. However they deducted £30 goodwill payment so I have only paid the balance. As with you my next payment will be taken the 3 June etc. Also the dates laid down are the same as you received. I know its early but I cannot get my head around how I am paying in advance.
  • TafrockTafrock Forumite
    630 posts
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    I don't really class it as paying in advance myself mable. You pay your monthly sum (I assume this is what was on your quote) mid month. Then you are billed end of month for a month's usage. The direct debit you pay is two weeks in advance of your bill. Of course you may not use as much electricity as you've paid for. Conversely you may use more. So technically it is pay in advance but isn't that what all companies do.

    I'm quite happy with it. After all I was a powershop client for nearly two years. Powershop rely on you building up a large credit. Mine was 200 quid at one point with them but at contract end it was just over 70.

    Of course with symbio being a new (as yet unproven company but they appear to be getting there) I wouldn't let my credit balance get anywhere near 100 pounds yet alone 200
  • BenightBenight Forumite
    418 posts
    100 Posts
    ✭✭
    Dobbibill wrote: »
    UPDATE

    1st DD has left this morning. I was expecting my projected amount to leave but the amount they have collected is the amount shown on my bill a week or so ago. This is only 37% of what I expected to be collected.

    I'm still not concerned as the money will just sit in the account, waiting to be collected.

    I will keep you all updated..........to be continued!
    Dobbi

    Any supplier is only permitted to collect such amount as specified on the advance notice associated with that coillection; not a penny more, not a penny less (unless they elect not to make the collection at all)

    Any collection contrary to that specified in the advance notice is a breach of the rules of the direct debit system, and you can request a full and immediate refund by your bank.

    You should not contact the supplier directly in any attempt to correct the amount already collected, and if you do, the rules of the direct debit system state the supplier should simply inform you to make a claim direct to your bank under the terms of the direct debit guarantee. To do otherwise would also be a breach of the direct debit rules by the supplier.
  • TafrockTafrock Forumite
    630 posts
    500 Posts Second Anniversary
    ✭✭
    But symbio informed everyone that they would be taking the first direct debit for the sum total of your first bill as per their new terms and conditions so have not contravened any rules unless of course you disagree with their new rules in which case as they specified in their email you are free to seek another supplier
  • MABLEMABLE Forumite
    4K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts
    ✭✭✭✭
    Tafrock wrote: »
    I don't really class it as paying in advance myself mable. You pay your monthly sum (I assume this is what was on your quote) mid month. Then you are billed end of month for a month's usage. The direct debit you pay is two weeks in advance of your bill. Of course you may not use as much electricity as you've paid for. Conversely you may use more. So technically it is pay in advance but isn't that what all companies do.

    I'm quite happy with it. After all I was a powershop client for nearly two years. Powershop rely on you building up a large credit. Mine was 200 quid at one point with them but at contract end it was just over 70.

    Of course with symbio being a new (as yet unproven company but they appear to be getting there) I wouldn't let my credit balance get anywhere near 100 pounds yet alone 200

    With my former supplier they are holding about £100 credit and this has already taken into account my final meter readings. Hopefully there will not be a fight in getting it back. After my experience with Extra Engery I will not hold my breath.
  • BenightBenight Forumite
    418 posts
    100 Posts
    ✭✭
    Tafrock wrote: »
    This is what the new terms and conditions say dobbibill. My direct debit also left this morning (collector sym energy bill). It was just like yours for the actual amount on latest bill. Also a meagre amount for myself just £6.53 as it was only for the period 24th June to May 1st

    Terms and conditions say next amount will be the monthly amount you agreed. It will then be used to offset your next bill which will be issued end of month

    Here's the an excerpt from the actual email I received explaining it

    "In May, you will receive your bill for April’s electricity consumption and the Direct debit payment for this will be taken from your account by the 15th May unless otherwise arranged. We will then request another Direct Debit for the May electricity consumption. This will be taken from your account on or around the 3rd June 2019. This will be the May advance payment and will be referenced electricity advance.

    In mid-June 2019, we will issue your May 2019 energy bill. Thereafter, you will receive an energy bill on a normal monthly basis thereafter, with the next energy bill issued in the first week of July 2019 and payment taken mid-July 2019."
    Tafrock wrote: »
    But symbio informed everyone that they would be taking the first direct debit for the sum total of your first bill as per their new terms and conditions so have not contravened any rules unless of course you disagree with their new rules in which case as they specified in their email you are free to seek another supplier

    I am not seeking here to dispute the terms and conditions you refer to.

    However, unfortunately those terms and conditions alone do not meet the requirements of advance notice required under the terms of the direct debit scheme.

    The advance notice must specify the exact amount, date (and frequency where appropriate) of any collection to be made in the future.
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