Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 53 total)
  • Have all the energy companies gone feral?
  • Premier Icon twinw4ll
    Free Member

    I probably haven’t the energy left to go into minute detail, but after changing from E.on to bulb am now in a world of pain, E.on made up my leaving energy readings and both companies ignored my actual readings Contacting either is nigh on impossible and I think a bot is trying not to sort it out.
    Just needed to vent, thanks if you wasted two minutes of your day.

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    Ah yes, after my energy company went bust, I’m with the energy company of last resort. Known as E.On.

    I’m moving as soon as I can.

    Been in similar place to you op with Npower when we moved in here. Lies, lies and more lies. Only when ofgem start getting involved did the meter readings supplied on email, with photo evidence, miraculously get found…

    Premier Icon deltacharlie72
    Free Member

    I seem to recall a similar experience when leaving Eon. Took absolutely no notice of the final readings I’d provided them with and issued me with a final bill based on a seemingly random estimate. They provided the same figures to my new provider who worked off them.

    It was only after I’d expended an inordinate amount of energy rectifying the situation and getting my readings recorded, that I realised it didn’t actually make a huge difference. As long as they both use the same readings and they’re not a million miles from yours, the difference is probably pennies

    Premier Icon dovebiker
    Free Member

    We’ve been living in a rental since last June. The house had been empty since February. When we moved in we contacted SSE as instructed by landlord and gave them a reading, paying bills regularly etc. Got a £60 bill from Octopus Energy insisting we were responsible for the bill from last February based on an estimate that massively exceeded estimate. Phoned them up and emailed them a photo of the meter when we arrive saying they can send me a bill for £6 based on what we’ve used. They’re now saying they can’t deal with it as out meter reading is so different from their estimate!

    Premier Icon airvent
    Free Member

    Yeah we moved into this house and switched from Avro to EOn and the switch took about 6 weeks during which time neither company would listen to the readings I provided. Then when eon took over finally I had an email at 10am one day from them asking for an opening reading, which I supplied half an hour later and they said was too late to use so I was put one estimated bills. Week later the meter reader came round and only submitted the gas reading as I could see it on my online portal, then both readings disappeared, I gave up at that point.

    Today I had a text telling me they’re installing a smart meter, not sure if that’s a good or bad thing now.

    They always say to switch every year to get the best deals, but I’m wondering if it’s worth the hassle or not.

    Premier Icon tjagain
    Full Member

    My rental flat has had no energy bills for over a year. i reported a faulty electricity meter almost 2 years ago. Not been replaced. I have a promise from them that no bills swill be issued

    Gas is finally sorted this week

    Premier Icon dashed
    Free Member

    Just gone through the switch pain… SSE to Bulb. In a rented property with Economy 7, despite no immersion heater or any electric heating whatsoever.

    Gave up trying to switch to single rate plan with SSE after wasting over 2hrs of my life on various phone calls.

    Confirmed with bulb they could fit a smart meter and change the tariff then instigated switch.

    2 days after switch went through SSE rang to arrange smart meter fitting but when I tried to book with Bulb (new provider) couldn’t give me a date.

    In the meantime, SSE called me and said our closing bill (based on final meter readings from Bulb) was over a grand (for 2 weeks energy use).

    Premier Icon roverpig
    Full Member

    SSE used to send someone out to read our meter every now and then. They’ve been hassling me to switch to a smart meter for ages, but I’ve resisted as I can’t see any point in replacing a meter that works and don’t like the idea that I’m making the guy who read the meter redundant in the process. Now they’ve sent me a letter to say the meter hasn’t been read in over a year and asking (or in truth requiring) me to do it. So, I guess they “redeployed” the guy who read the meter anyway. I guess you can’t win but if it weren’t for the stories above I’d probably switch provider.

    Premier Icon boombang
    Full Member

    After my dad died Eon managed (after 3 months) to finally refund the £1000 in credit. A week later I got a bill for £850 for the previous year. Thankfully I hadn’t paid their comedy oversize cheque in, that got cancelled and a new one finally issued. A complaint resulted in them agreeing to three mistakes and £15 compensation for the hours I spent trying to sort it.

    Avro are the ultimate buggers however. After moving away they took more cash, delayed the final bill and then delayed repaying the money. Complaint was shot down, went to ombudsman who found in my favour – Avro then told the ombudsman they had paid the comp and apologises, but they hadn’t. Ombudsman chased it and now Avro have credited my closed account rather than pay me (and have turned off their phones and webchat, who knows if I will ever get a response).

    Premier Icon stevextc
    Free Member

    It’s not really gone feral, they have no actual role or assets other than to own you.

    They don’t make the electric/gas .. they don’t own the infrastructure they just own the right to bill you.

    Premier Icon davros
    Full Member

    I just received a surprise refund from when I left ovo years ago. Every time I switch every year something goes wrong. I have zero confidence in how they work out their bills. But it’s too baffling to work out for a bozo like me.

    Premier Icon franksinatra
    Full Member

    Do the new band of companies like Look After My Bills take some of the pain away or do they add another layer of hassle? Do you still need to deal with providers?

    Premier Icon twonks
    Full Member

    Is there actually any energy companies that are any good?

    We’ve been with EDF for years and they currently come back with renewals about a tenner a month (dual fuel) more than the cheapest of the comparison sites.

    I never liked EDF previously and not sure how we ended up with them but so far this time they seem ok. Not had any reason not to of course, as we haven’t left them for a while.

    Current deal runs out in 4 weeks and have been looking tonight as it happens. Some weird companies come out the cheapest but I guess they are just smaller companies with lower overheads so can work on lower margins.

    Ultimately is it a case of the fuel costs a set amount no matter who you go with and it’s down to how much money your chosen sender of bills wants to make from you?

    Premier Icon airvent
    Free Member

    Ultimately is it a case of the fuel costs a set amount no matter who you go with and it’s down to how much money your chosen sender of bills wants to send you?

    Kind of. It’s a race to who can have the lowest overheads whilst doing the best buying, all the suppliers are doing is trying to buy energy at the lowest rates (which change half hourly I think) and energy futures etc. Then sell it to you with a bit added on. That’s massively oversimplified and I’m by no means an expert.

    Premier Icon kelron
    Free Member

    Do the new band of companies like Look After My Bills take some of the pain away or do they add another layer of hassle? Do you still need to deal with providers?

    Just more hassle from what I’ve seen.

    Premier Icon holdsteady
    Full Member

    Look after my bills are a waste of space, as it seems are the companies that they select from and you can also get better deals from other companies not signed up to Look after my bills.
    My last switch in Aug 2020 got messed up and they refused to assist when People’s Energy carried on billing me for gas despite emailing me to acknowledge I had moved to Avro, they aren’t in any hurry to repay me of my overpayment of approx £500 despite numerous emails and harassing them on social media and they provide no way of contacting them by phone. They always ignored my meter readings and just took a grossly inflated estimate by direct debit monthly.

    Avro were similarly ignoring estimates but have finally agreed to return the overpayment of approx £400 and reduce the direct debit estimated amount.

    It was all a great deal simpler before the Tories privatised the energy market

    Premier Icon burko73
    Full Member

    I moved from Avro to York’s energy last yr. I’ve now been moved to a supplier of last respiratory as York’s went bust. It’s Scottish power and they say they owe me £600 of overpayments as my dad was for elec and gas for a year. Trouble is I’ve discovered recently whilst looking into this that York’s hadn’t been charging me for and electricity at all and don’t seem to have moved me over from Avro. My Avro account is still open but showing no money owing and a balance of £0. I’ve not got an elec supply contract with Scottish as it seems York’s can’t have switched properly and they didn’t seem to realise in a whole year. I hadn’t realised as my dd was the same as it was the previous yr there or there about with Avro. So at the mo, nobody’s billing me for elec! I’m going to wait for my Scottish rebate and then see if I can set up a new supplier direct from Avro as there’s nobody at York’s who you can talk to about the gap.

    Premier Icon stevextc
    Free Member

    Kind of. It’s a race to who can have the lowest overheads whilst doing the best buying, all the suppliers are doing is trying to buy energy at the lowest rates (which change half hourly I think) and energy futures etc. Then sell it to you with a bit added on. That’s massively oversimplified and I’m by no means an expert.

    That seems accurate to me …
    It’s a very weird industry … legislated yet in a way that forces the lowest bar to the assets (customers)

    The actual purpose of energy companies is to accept blame for the government.
    In return they get to part own the governments assets (citizens).
    The entry bar is set very high to prevent value driven companies competing so it’s very very low margins hence needs to have huge amounts of guaranteed customers with the lousiest customer service.

    It’s classed as “national security” to set this bar.

    Examples .. power cut .. blame the energy company .. government increases tax .. blame energy company .. make a profit ? blame the energy company.

    You may wonder why anyone would want to enter this industry ?
    Probably as many reasons as companies but mainly to win other more profitable contracts by doing the “dirty work” or escape legislation or get more favourable terms in another sector.

    My last switch in Aug 2020 got messed up and they refused to assist when People’s Energy carried on billing me for gas despite emailing me to acknowledge I had moved to Avro, they aren’t in any hurry to repay me of my overpayment of approx £500 despite numerous emails and harassing them on social media and they provide no way of contacting them by phone.

    Why would they? It’s not about the bill it’s about the cost to them of processing your change if the automation failed. This likely exceeds the £500

    Premier Icon trail_rat
    Free Member

    SSE used to send someone out to read our meter every now and then. They’ve been hassling me to switch to a smart meter for ages, but I’ve resisted as I can’t see any point in replacing a meter that works and don’t like the idea that I’m making the guy who read the meter redundant in the process. Now they’ve sent me a letter to say the meter hasn’t been read in over a year and asking (or in truth requiring) me to do it. So, I guess they “redeployed” the guy who read the meter anyway. I guess you can’t win but if it weren’t for the stories above I’d probably switch provider.

    your local to me .
    been trying to get ovo to fit a smart meter at mine for about 6 months now .

    They claim smart meters not being fitted currently in Scotland – yet my cousins husband – a smart meter fitter in the neighbouring council area (also scotland) …. is fitting them.

    Premier Icon Jakester
    Free Member

    They’re all, to a man, utter shits. I hate energy companies. Until recently, I haven’t had ever had a good experience with them.

    Classics I’ve experienced over the years involved being sent the bill for the local kebab shop (NPower), and debt collectors being deployed when I tried to dispute the address was wrong; failing to credit payments to the account for years despite a direct debit having been set up, and consequently sending us a massive bill (Coopenergy); a dispute over the actual bill where they sent me a cheque for £250+ and the next day said we owed them £400 (Npower again); and the best was sending threatening letters from a supposed third party debt collector which was actually a wholly-owned subsidiary of the company and according to CoHo and the actual company secretary should have been a dormant company (yep, NPower again).

    I say until recently; after the most recent debacle, I switched to what was at the time the cheapest company in our area, which was Pure Planet. Thus far they have done everything which is expected of them, which is take the readings we send them, account for the money we pay them, and not do anything stupid or random.

    So, by actually performing the bare minimum to be expected of them, without any hassle, they provide thus far the best experience I’d had. What a low bar.

    Premier Icon doris5000
    Free Member

    I’ve been with Good Energy for the last 6 years. They’ve been absolutely fine, and the couple of times I’ve had to deal with Customer service it’s all been very easy.

    They’re probably not the cheapest, but for the absence of hassle it’s worth it!

    Premier Icon andrewh
    Free Member

    I’ve been on the receiving end of ome cock-ups too, but to my advantage.
    Fell out with Ecotricity after they were refusing to accept meter readings and then sending me all kinds of debt recovery letters for not paying them twice what I actually owed them.
    Tried to change to Scottish Power, they wouldn’t let me go as I had outstanding debt to them, no I didin’t. The SP thing had expired by then, tried Lookaftermybills when Ecotricty finally released me, they sent me to someone I’d never heard of, they refused me as I was under contract from SP, no I wasn’t.
    I now have three companies all denying, in writing, that they supply me. My lights still come on when I press the switch and I haven’t had a bill for fifteen months. I will keep schtum, but acknowledge that I may one day have to pay whichever of SP or the other one twig last, Ecotricity aren’t getting another penny from me. No intention of moving any time soon, this may go under the radar for quite some time

    Premier Icon stevextc
    Free Member

    I now have three companies all denying, in writing, that they supply me. My lights still come on when I press the switch and I haven’t had a bill for fifteen months. I will keep schtum, but acknowledge that I may one day have to pay whichever of SP or the other one twig last, Ecotricity aren’t getting another penny from me. No intention of moving any time soon, this may go under the radar for quite some time

    You may not have to.

    I now have three companies all denying, in writing, that they supply me.

    They don’t supply you they just have the right to bill you for some electrons they purchased against some electrons you used under contract. i.e. They don’t own those electrons... only the right to bill you for them STC.

    If you have in writing that you don’t have a contract with them then you don’t NEED to pay them. They have no more right to bill you for them than any other energy company.

    Premier Icon Jakester
    Free Member

    If you have in writing that you don’t have a contract with them then you don’t NEED to pay them. They have no more right to bill you for them than any other energy company.

    Hmm, not sure that’s right. If you’re using a product supplied by someone at the very least they’d be entitled to recover the cost of the energy used. Someone is clearly supplying him and by turning a blind eye he’d be effectively being party to theft by omission.

    Premier Icon andrewh
    Free Member

    Theft by ommission/unsolicited goods?
    I know I’m going to have to pay someone eventually but genuinely dont know who and I have given up trying to work out who it should be, none of them appear to want to say its them. My bill was only about £15/month anyway so if I do get one for five years worth down the line it’s a) not a surprise and b) not too horrendous. I might get lucky and not get one though

    Premier Icon stevextc
    Free Member

    Hmm, not sure that’s right. If you’re using a product supplied by someone at the very least they’d be entitled to recover the cost of the energy used. Someone is clearly supplying him and by turning a blind eye he’d be effectively being party to theft by omission.

    He’s being “supplied” by National Grid… some electrons get put into the NG and energies have contracts to bill customers for use of those electrons.

    He’s not using a product (electrons) supplied by any energy company he doesn’t have a contract with. So who would recover the cost of the energy used?

    The reason it doesn’t seem right is the very weird role energy companies play.

    look at it like this … I buy the right to play some music off some company and I have a CD.
    Other companies (say Apple, Deezer etc.) have a right to sell that music but that doesn’t mean they can all bill me for playing my CD.

    It’s even less connected than say a mobile contract where some of the same companies own the infrastructure. The energy companies don’t even own the infrastructure, merely the right to bill people for using electrons as per a contract.

    Premier Icon stevextc
    Free Member

    Theft by ommission/unsolicited goods?
    I know I’m going to have to pay someone eventually but genuinely dont know who and I have given up trying to work out who it should be, none of them appear to want to say its them. My bill was only about £15/month anyway so if I do get one for five years worth down the line it’s a) not a surprise and b) not too horrendous. I might get lucky and not get one though

    As per above.
    Who’s “someone” … it has to be someone you have a contract with.

    I totally get you want to do the right thing … but it seems to me you’d have to randomly split £15 say 5 ways and pay £3 a month to 5 different suppliers… but non of them “own” those electrons.

    Energy companies are essentially administrative (they perform billing) and you are an admin error.. a very very small blip.

    Premier Icon mariner
    Free Member

    Has anyone ever taken up one of the group offers on MSE?
    If so how did it work out?

    Premier Icon cynic-al
    Full Member

    I deal with these ****s for a living.

    Only a few individuals are evil, most are lazy, incompetent or poorly trained.

    Keep complaining and get compensation.

    Premier Icon poly
    Free Member

    but after changing from E.on to bulb am now in a world of pain, E.on made up my leaving energy readings and both companies ignored my actual readings Contacting either is nigh on impossible and I think a bot is trying not to sort it out.

    I feel your pain. When I switched from Eon to Bulb, Eon took the correct reading of 5432, but on the bulb app I miskeyed 4532. I knew my mistake and immediately sent a message to bulb which was duly ignored. Every month their app refused to take my reading because the reading was lower than the original. Every month I followed their process to report these manually – every month I heard nothing. After 9 months I got hold of someone. They denied I had ever sent ANY readings since the original. It took another 5 months (some of which was me in fairness – but my patience for being asked to send new pictures every 2nd day was wearing thin) before they finally found someone who could fix it. I was getting responses from a human being at help@bulb.co.uk so if you aren’t getting anywhere with Bots… give that a try. (Still took a “you’ve got 7 days before I go to the regulator” to get fixed – on day 7!).

    Premier Icon twonks
    Full Member

    Further to my comment up above, today I decided that we’d stay with EDF for a renewal as we are currently in a fair bit of credit with them, and it is just not worth the crap in changing for £10 a month.

    Went through the dual fuel tariff checker at dinner, signed up and it came back with ‘we can’t sort your gas out but here is a new electricity tariff, details to be sent through within a few days’

    Now when I log in they want to charge an extra £40 a month for gas over what I was quoted as a dual fuel initially.

    On with live chat now to try sort it but I can see an email going to the ombudsmen to sort it… sigh.

    EDIT. well that was a bit weird. The live chat ended with me getting the dual fuel fixed at £18 cheaper than I was looking for and £4 cheaper than the lowest quote offered by the comparison sites….. We’ll probably get cut off next month now lol

    Premier Icon xora
    Full Member

    Yes to the OP they have gone Feral, it seems my “smart” meter needs a meter reader to read it every three months unlike the “stupid” meter it replaced which was yearly!

    Premier Icon squirrelking
    Free Member

    I do the dance every renewal and always avoid the no names. For a few quid I’ve saved myself a lot of hassle in the past. With EDF, have been for a while, honestly one of the better ones these days.

    Scottish Power on the other hand, are one of those companies I love to hate, along with BA and Wheelies.

    Premier Icon roverpig
    Full Member

    That’s interesting @trail_rat. It’s probably at least a year ago that SSE started sending me letters asking me to call them to arrange a date to instal a smart meter (which I ignored). Then they started phoning (so I blocked the number). Thinking about it, it’s been a fair few months since they last wrote (no idea if they are still trying to call) so maybe they have stopped installing them. The letter telling me I had to read my own meter did say something about checking whether I could get a smart meter installed.

    To be honest I’m not sure why I am so opposed to them. I think I just got annoyed at them trying to push them on me and claiming that it was all for my benefit. I figure they aren’t really going to go to the expense of replacing perfectly serviceable meters unless there is something in it for them. So the dishonesty annoyed me then it just became a thing.

    Premier Icon tjagain
    Full Member

    As above I have been having a long running issue with scottish power. Because of all the lies I have been told I am insisting on all communications via email. the complaints handler phoned me yesterday . I refused to answer his security questions and told him everything must be done by email. I then got an email trying to set up a telephone call!

    The main issue i thin is that they all work to algorithms and scripts and if you refuse to work the way they want then they are stuck unable to be flexible

    Needless to say he got a strong email back stating once again that all communications must be by email and that i will not be talking to them on the phone. I do not care if it delays things – i am not being billed and have been promised i will not be as its their fault there has been no working meter for almost 2 years

    Premier Icon squirrelking
    Free Member

    I figure they aren’t really going to go to the expense of replacing perfectly serviceable meters unless there is something in it for them.

    It’s a government policy.

    HTH

    Premier Icon stumpyjon
    Full Member

    Also Smart meters will be needed for variable tariff pricing, particular for electricity. When EVs are properly embedded in 10 years the grid wont cope with everyone coming home and whacking there car on charge, they’ll want to encourage people to take up slack in the generating system at 3 in the morning. Best way of doing that is to decrease costs at night increase costs during the day.

    Premier Icon gallowayboy
    Full Member

    After 18 months of stress dealing with British gas I’d say feral doesn’t even touch the wasteful incompetence of the current system. BG repeatedly set up duplicate accounts using non existent mpan numbers, every time I managed to get one closed, they refunded me, then opened another account and rebilled me. A year of letters from debt collection companies (just ignore them sir) a letter from the local court allowing access (we’ve sorted that out for you, don’t worry), then a lad turned up one day to fit a pay to use meter. By this time, we’d been switched to another supplier. I eventually managed to find a number for an office in Rotherham, contacted the inner sanctum of the complaints department and things were resolved, which took six months to unravel apparently. The main problem seems to be that the customer contact points are incapable of resolving problems, and they will not pass the problems up to someone who CAN.

    Premier Icon crazy-legs
    Full Member

    After 18 months of stress dealing with British gas I’d say feral doesn’t even touch the wasteful incompetence of the current system.

    British Gas were the suppliers of the first property I moved into when I graduated and got a job.

    I was getting letters DAILY:
    Welcome to BG, we’re brilliant and we’re honoured you’ve chosen us (err, no, you just happened to supply the last people who lived here!)
    You owe us [random number], please pay immediately
    You owe us £0.00, please pay immediately
    We can see you have not paid your previous bill of £0.00, debt recovery will now be processed
    Welcome to BG, please call us with your meter readings

    It took 3 months of hassle to sort it, sometimes an hour on the phone at a time listening to the “your call is important to us…” only for it to finish with “there is no-one available to take your call, please call back later” /cuts off.

    Didn’t help that this was the relatively early days of stuff being moved online and their website was a disaster, incapable of doing anything other than directing you to call a number. No such things as smartphones and apps back then either.

    They seemed completely incapable of receiving two numbers, calculating a final bill and sending me a bill for that amount. It’s like – this is the absolute basics of your job! Receive meter reading. Calculate gas/elec usage since last meter reading based on subtracting the older number from the newer one. Calculate price based on tariff. Send bill for that amount.

    I was with npower (now been automatically moved to E.On recently – some sort of buyout / merger). At least the npower app, while it wass woefully slow, allowed you to put in a meter reading and a few weeks later receive an accurate bill and an adjusted direct debit.

    Premier Icon neilnevill
    Free Member

    I was with bulb, they seemed fine. Had a perfectly painless switch to green just over a year ago and they’ve been fine since….so far.

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