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  • FIRST POST
    • tracys_65
    • By tracys_65 7th Mar 18, 4:02 PM
    • 2Posts
    • 0Thanks
    tracys_65
    NPower high usage on empty property
    • #1
    • 7th Mar 18, 4:02 PM
    NPower high usage on empty property 7th Mar 18 at 4:02 PM
    Hi all,


    My father passed away in September 2015 and we sold his property in August 2017. We have an ongoing query/complaint with N Power as the usage during this period was higher than when my father was living in the property full time.


    During this period my sister and I paid the occasional visit to check on things (we live 300 miles away and so it really was a rare, occasional visit) but the property was empty 99.9% of the time, with no electricity being used.


    We do not seem to be getting anywhere with the bill being reduced and I am just wondering if anyone can offer any advise to us. This is the latest reply from N Power:


    I fully appreciate your views and agree that the usage does not fall in line with electricity used whilst your father was alive, however based on the facts of the amount of usage which was used at the property in the time it was empty and the fact the bill is based on an actual final meter reading of 9428, provided by Mrs xxx, the account is correct.


    You will also see from the data I sent, the new owner provided the new supplier with a meter reading of 10398 which averages at 6-7 units per day since he took over the property. If the meter was faulty, the reading would be considerably higher as it would continue to run faster than it should. As this is not the case we can only determine that the meter is running as normal and Im sorry to advise that we are unable to investigate this any further.

    I understand you advised no one was in the property, however your sister previously advised that a family friend who lived close by had access. She also advised that the water bill had been a lot higher whilst the property had been vacant, indicating someone had been using the facilities without consent. If this was the case with the electricity usage, this is something we could not become involved with as this would be classed as a third party dispute.


    Whilst I totally appreciate your situation and as much as I would like to be able to amend the account for you both, we are unable to do so as this would have a negative impact on the new owners usage, which as we have already discussed, is not out of the ordinary.


    I have sent out copy bills and a statement of account to your sister yesterday and have placed your complaint on hold up to 20 March 18, allowing you both time to review these.


    I trust this information explains the situation.


    As per this e-mail, we did have an issue with our water bill but this was resolved as the water company confirmed the meter was faulty. A family friend did have a key to the property for emergencies and to let the estate agents in but I am 10000% confident that they had nothing to do with the increase.


    Has anyone been in a similar situation and did you manage to get anywhere with it?


    Thanks in advance,


    Tracy
Page 1
    • Hengus
    • By Hengus 7th Mar 18, 4:28 PM
    • 5,931 Posts
    • 3,651 Thanks
    Hengus
    • #2
    • 7th Mar 18, 4:28 PM
    • #2
    • 7th Mar 18, 4:28 PM
    Hi - welcome to the forum. Is it possible that your Father passed away with an estimated reading on the account which was much lower than it should have been? At the time of his death, suppliers only had to read the meter once every two years. Has anyone been giving the supplier meter readings in the period since his death? Remember that a chunk of the bill will be for standing charges. My guess is that your Father!!!8217;s Executor has been presented with a catch up bill. It will be difficult, if not impossible, to dispute. Sorry.
  • nPower
    • #3
    • 7th Mar 18, 4:28 PM
    • #3
    • 7th Mar 18, 4:28 PM
    Hi all,


    My father passed away in September 2015 and we sold his property in August 2017. We have an ongoing query/complaint with N Power as the usage during this period was higher than when my father was living in the property full time.


    During this period my sister and I paid the occasional visit to check on things (we live 300 miles away and so it really was a rare, occasional visit) but the property was empty 99.9% of the time, with no electricity being used.


    We do not seem to be getting anywhere with the bill being reduced and I am just wondering if anyone can offer any advise to us. This is the latest reply from N Power:


    I fully appreciate your views and agree that the usage does not fall in line with electricity used whilst your father was alive, however based on the facts of the amount of usage which was used at the property in the time it was empty and the fact the bill is based on an actual final meter reading of 9428, provided by Mrs xxx, the account is correct.


    You will also see from the data I sent, the new owner provided the new supplier with a meter reading of 10398 which averages at 6-7 units per day since he took over the property. If the meter was faulty, the reading would be considerably higher as it would continue to run faster than it should. As this is not the case we can only determine that the meter is running as normal and Im sorry to advise that we are unable to investigate this any further.

    I understand you advised no one was in the property, however your sister previously advised that a family friend who lived close by had access. She also advised that the water bill had been a lot higher whilst the property had been vacant, indicating someone had been using the facilities without consent. If this was the case with the electricity usage, this is something we could not become involved with as this would be classed as a third party dispute.


    Whilst I totally appreciate your situation and as much as I would like to be able to amend the account for you both, we are unable to do so as this would have a negative impact on the new owners usage, which as we have already discussed, is not out of the ordinary.


    I have sent out copy bills and a statement of account to your sister yesterday and have placed your complaint on hold up to 20 March 18, allowing you both time to review these.


    I trust this information explains the situation.


    As per this e-mail, we did have an issue with our water bill but this was resolved as the water company confirmed the meter was faulty. A family friend did have a key to the property for emergencies and to let the estate agents in but I am 10000% confident that they had nothing to do with the increase.


    Has anyone been in a similar situation and did you manage to get anywhere with it?


    Thanks in advance,


    Tracy
    Originally posted by tracys_65


    Hi tracys_65

    Sorry to hear of your concerns over the bill; please send us an email to the address on our profile if you'd like us to look further into this for you.

    Thanks

    Jade
    Official Company Representative"
    I am the official company representative of nPower. MSE has given permission for me to post in response to queries about the company, so that I can help solve issues. You can see my name on the companies with permission to post list. I am not allowed to tout for business at all. If you believe I am please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com This does NOT imply any form of approval of my company or its products by MSE.
    If we ask you to contact us, please do so using helpandsupport@npower.com - MSE Forum has temporarily allowed the display of our contact details in our signature due to a technical issue with our profile
    • tracys_65
    • By tracys_65 15th Mar 18, 2:37 PM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    tracys_65
    • #4
    • 15th Mar 18, 2:37 PM
    • #4
    • 15th Mar 18, 2:37 PM
    Hi - welcome to the forum. Is it possible that your Father passed away with an estimated reading on the account which was much lower than it should have been? At the time of his death, suppliers only had to read the meter once every two years. Has anyone been giving the supplier meter readings in the period since his death? Remember that a chunk of the bill will be for standing charges. My guess is that your Father!!!8217;s Executor has been presented with a catch up bill. It will be difficult, if not impossible, to dispute. Sorry.
    Originally posted by Hengus
    Hi Hengus,

    We've gone back through all his bills and meter readings were provided regularly. The below shows actual readings, I've removed all the estimated readings.

    As a new poster, i can't post a link, but if you add https before the below it should work.

    ://i.imgur.com/H8l7Ub7.png

    My father passed away in September 2015 so, to me, it looks as though he was using 3-4kWh daily. After he passed this dropped down to 1.5(will that be the standing charge perhaps as no electricty was being used apart from the very occasional visit), but then suddenly shot up again.

    I can't for the life of me understand this.
    • Hengus
    • By Hengus 15th Mar 18, 2:51 PM
    • 5,931 Posts
    • 3,651 Thanks
    Hengus
    • #5
    • 15th Mar 18, 2:51 PM
    • #5
    • 15th Mar 18, 2:51 PM
    Hi Hengus,

    We've gone back through all his bills and meter readings were provided regularly. The below shows actual readings, I've removed all the estimated readings.

    As a new poster, i can't post a link, but if you add https before the below it should work.

    ://i.imgur.com/H8l7Ub7.png

    My father passed away in September 2015 so, to me, it looks as though he was using 3-4kWh daily. After he passed this dropped down to 1.5(will that be the standing charge perhaps as no electricty was being used apart from the very occasional visit), but then suddenly shot up again.

    I can't for the life of me understand this.
    Originally posted by tracys_65
    I am not sure that I can offer any advice. Your post shows usage but no standing charges. What tariff are you on? As NPower has suggested, it is not unresonable to assume that the energy has been used. The question is by what or by whom? Is the meter still increasing?
    • Andy_WSM
    • By Andy_WSM 15th Mar 18, 3:35 PM
    • 2,114 Posts
    • 4,535 Thanks
    Andy_WSM
    • #6
    • 15th Mar 18, 3:35 PM
    • #6
    • 15th Mar 18, 3:35 PM
    You haven't accounted for the increased water usage either?

    Was someone showering in the property for example?

    • wavelets
    • By wavelets 15th Mar 18, 3:44 PM
    • 206 Posts
    • 79 Thanks
    wavelets
    • #7
    • 15th Mar 18, 3:44 PM
    • #7
    • 15th Mar 18, 3:44 PM
    I am sorry to haer about the passing away of your father in Septenber 2015.
    All this worry about the electricity bill after he passed away cannot help either.

    As a new MSE user, you are unable to post an image, so I hope you don't mind if I post it for you to offer further assistance.



    The first issue I see here is that after the passing away of your father, you say "the property was empty 99.9% of the time, with no electricity being used", as you live 300 miles away.

    However, the figures don't show that to be the case.
    From 15/07/2015 - 09-08/2016, your table indicates that about 1.5kWh per day of electricity were still being consumed.

    Even if we consider the first 2 months of this period were when your father was still alive, when based on earlier figures, it appears he used about 4kWh per day (a rough average based on the rage 3.04 - 4.44 kWh/day), that would only account for approximately 250 of the 587kWh consumed.
    That would still mean in excess of 1kWh per day for the remaining 10 months of the period.

    That is a lot of electricity consumed for a house that you say was empty and not using any electricity.

    But your main issue appears to occur sometime in the period 09/08/2016 - 18/10/2016 when the consumption suddenly increases.

    Did anyone ever go to inspect the property during that period?
    The evidence would suggest somthing was turned on at that time, and left on perhaps by accident.
    A consumption of 8kWh per day could, for example, be the result of someone flicking on a (pooly insulated) immersion heater; Perhaps they needed some hot water during their visit? But failing to turn it off again.

    I'm sorry, but the figures suggest the meter readings taken by both the supplier and yourself were correct.
    As an extra surety, when the property was eventually sold in August 2017, if your meter reading was incorrect at that time, that would haveprobably been identified when the purchaser called the supplier to open their account with them, and provided an opening meter read.

    In my opinion, whilst you may be arguing about possibly as much as 500 worrth on energy supplied over the 2 years in question, I fear you will not get much further than you have for the last 6 months over your complaint, unless you can prove the billing to be in error. In contrast, 500 in the grand scheme of things, probably not worth worrying about e.g. the house probably increased in value many times more than this in the 2 years it was left empty.

    Unless you have solid evidence to dispute the bill, then arrange for the estate to settle it, and move on

    Last edited by wavelets; 15-03-2018 at 3:50 PM. Reason: formatting
    • Robin9
    • By Robin9 15th Mar 18, 4:41 PM
    • 2,656 Posts
    • 1,732 Thanks
    Robin9
    • #8
    • 15th Mar 18, 4:41 PM
    • #8
    • 15th Mar 18, 4:41 PM
    A single 100w light bulb left on - perhaps in the attic, on the stairs -
    between Oct 16 and Aug 17 would account for 1/3 of the consumption
    Never pay on an estimated bill
    • CashStrapped
    • By CashStrapped 15th Mar 18, 6:05 PM
    • 1,286 Posts
    • 720 Thanks
    CashStrapped
    • #9
    • 15th Mar 18, 6:05 PM
    • #9
    • 15th Mar 18, 6:05 PM
    I was going to do the numbers, but @wavelets beat me to it.....

    I was also going to come to the same conclusion. It could easily be something was left on. A switch flicked without the person realising what it was, thinking it was a light.

    Things that are hard to spot are usually a culprit. A traditional lightbulb in a cupboard as @Robin9 states. I would me more inclined to suspect the immersion too. It is a very common error. It would not be on permanently, but keep turning on as the tank cooled. If there was a tank installed of course.

    In addition, a water bill could have built up from a leaking toilet pan or again, something left running.

    Do not count out the idea that someone, cheekily had unauthorised access. Being 300 miles away and unable to monitor the situation leaves you with no evidence to confirm this.

    For example, it could be a family member of the family friend, a teenager knowing they had access to an empty property to invite friends round to. The family friend may not have known about it.

    ---

    A frustrating situation I appreciate. But, with the meter readings confirmed, the energy has been used and unfortunately you are liable.

    Look on the bright side, at least it was not broken into and temporarily squatted in.
    Last edited by CashStrapped; 15-03-2018 at 6:10 PM.
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