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in thinking the cost gas direct debit bit much

(19 Posts)
mummag Tue 02-Jun-09 16:30:59

i live in a two bedroom house and have just received an amended dual fuel statement...... they want me to start paying 136.00 a month for gas and electric, the gas alone is 93 pounds a month. I am struggling to see how they have come to this figure..... how much do you all pay and am i living in cloud cuckoo land thinking that this is a lot of money. and this is double what i have been paying up till now.

nametaken Tue 02-Jun-09 16:38:18

Well, if you have only ever paid £68 a month for gas and electric and now you're having to pay £136 one of 3 things has happened.

1. You've previously been receiving and paying estimated bills, not actual bills.
2. The price your provider charges has just doubled.
3. They've miscalculated the amount you need to pay.

Once you've ruled out 1 and 2, you can go back to them and tell them they've made a mistake.

Ninkynork Tue 02-Jun-09 16:39:30

I had over £200 pounds credit for gas before the winter, was really careful with the heating and continued to pay £7 p.w for it. Now I am only £1 in credit shock so it does look like I'll have to start paying double - £14 p.w / £56 p.m instead in order to have a bit in there for next winter.

That isn't anywhere near as high as yours though. Two children, two-bed as well too. Are there any outstanging charges added on that you can see?

MummyDragon Tue 02-Jun-09 16:43:59

£136 per month for gas and electricity is VERY high for a 2-bed. You don't have your heating on during this weather, do you?! Seriously, sounds like a mistake or perhaps a backlog of previously estimated bills ...

However, £68 per month (I think that's what you paid previously??) isn't that much IMO, so maybe it IS a backlog. Worth checking.

lynniep Tue 02-Jun-09 16:48:08

Crikey, I thought our payments were high (went up £30 to £120 a month recently) and we have a 4 bed. I give them all our readings when requested. I'm not sure if it went up because the prices did, or because I work from home now, but probably a bit of both. When I get a chance to look at the figures, I'l probably check out uswitch again. Have done in the past but havent been able to bring the price down (we're with scottish power dual)

mychildrenarebarmy Tue 02-Jun-09 17:11:31

We have a 2 bed terrace and our dual bill is £55/month so your does seem high to me. I would certainly give them a call and find out what they have based it on.

oldraver Tue 02-Jun-09 17:53:23

Thats the exact amount I pay for a 4 bed detached. I ma on Essentials tarrif (the cheapest) and it didnt go up in all the price hikes and it just covers the bills over the year

You must keep an eye on estimated bill and phone up with a correct reading. I think way too many people turn a blind eye to them if they appear to be the amount they want to pay

onagar Tue 02-Jun-09 18:03:56

My payments will have to go up to over £120 for a 1 bed flat. My electricity unit price (no gas) has gone up 300% in 18 months.

At this rate having electricity will be for rich people only.

Saltire Tue 02-Jun-09 18:09:21

Well I changed supplier, after being told that I could get cheaper than the £85 a month gasna d£78 a month electric I was paying with BG. SO the new company started me off on £45 a month for each, in January, then they suddenly said I have to pay £110 electric a month and £123 gas a month starting 1st June

onagar Tue 02-Jun-09 18:09:32

I'm still looking into mine because I think there is a mistake somewhere

mummag Tue 02-Jun-09 18:13:16

looking at the bill, they have estimated a lot of the previous years statement, even tho i have let the meter reading man in on various occasions. There does seem to be some outstanding for that period and so to pay that off they are going to triple my annual bill, hmmmmmmmmm looking at what they think i should pay for ACTUAL gas usage its 198 for 6months which would work out at 33 a month still. Its all a bit confusing, but you are right i do need to keep a sharp eye on the estimated bit. I am clearly a bit crap at this kind of thing

mummag Tue 02-Jun-09 18:15:22

imagine if electricity was just for rich people........... it could become reality for us, its going to be candles and a good old fashioned sing song for entertainment soon

oldraver Tue 02-Jun-09 18:20:28

ONAGER.. Has you DD gone up in line with the price hike of your Electric rate.. or like me has your supplier just decided to raise your DD for no good reason ?

Over the last 6 months British Gas have twice tried to raise my DD, despite me being in credit, and still waiting for them to sort out my cheaper tarriff. I pointed out that even if I wasnt going onto a cheaper tarrif (WHEN they eventually got round to it)I was still in credit in the winter months. So a rise in DD was not necessary. I threatened to pull out of the DD system if they sent out another letter attempting to steal more money from my account

I pointed out I was stroppy enough to deal with them but what about all the old people they do this too.. they would be very worried getting letters trying to take more than was needed

onagar Tue 02-Jun-09 18:59:33

I know what you mean about them wanting to change the DD. I have had that before too, but this time it's different.

I missed half a line out of my post. It was meant to say the amount had gone up 300% not the unit charge as they claim I'm suddenly using a lot more as well. This is unlikely so I am asking them to check the meter out. If anything I should be using a bit less now as I made some changes.

I am waiting for them to get back to me now as I only just got the latest (6 monthly) bill and couldn't believe it.

None of mine are estimated and I generally check when I get a bill that they read it correctly.
I once got into a bad situation with the water meter because they were reading the meter next to mine in the street half the time so the numbers went wildly up and down.

mummag Tue 02-Jun-09 19:48:53

they have changed my direct debit before and taken out as much as they want, i rang them up and asked why and they said that they had written to me, but they hadnt. At least this time i got a letter rather than just a very nasty surprise. I worry about older people too, as it stressed me out loads and i am able to fight for myself if you see what i mean

LovelyTinOfSpam Tue 02-Jun-09 19:57:38

I had a letter the other day saying they are going to treble our electricity DD hmm

I think a lot of the time they do it to snaffle your money and earn all the interest/investment income on it.

My parents no longer do DD after they ended up something like £400 in credit for no valid reason.

Longtalljosie Tue 02-Jun-09 20:06:36

Spam - I'm absolutely convinced this is why they do it, which is why I'm not paying monthly by direct debit.

I did have an argument with the electricity company a couple of years back when they tried to do this. I won, but in order to do so, you need a full year of meter readings. You can then work out what all those units would cost at the current price per unit (ie, not just how much you spent in the year), then divide by 12 for a monthly figure.

If that comes up as £63/ month (say) tell them you'll pay them no more than £70, which will take in any margin for error, and price rises.

It took me fifteen solid minutes of arguing the logic of this, but I did get there in the end. Their argument (at the time) was, you live in a one bedroom flat, that means you should pay this much. Which is silly because it means you should pay out regardless of how careful you are.

LovelyTinOfSpam Tue 02-Jun-09 20:31:23

I rang one and pointed out that the bills are supposed to average over the year - presumably half the year I should be in debt and half in credit (more or less). ie the averaging they do. I checked on the literature and it said the intention was to pay the same all year.

I explained to them that if they raised the DD then I would end up loads in credit as we were just coming into summer when obviously my usage would drop, so the DD as it stood was about right.

I was told this wasn't how it worked, I had to pay off what I had used over winter. Well that's not averaging over the year then is it. They refused to move. I switched.

They all do it though.

KingCanuteIAm Tue 02-Jun-09 20:36:00

Which supplier are you with?

I am with Atlantic, my house is probably twice the size of yours, I pay £120 pm dd combined and I have nearly £300 credit after winter so I would say yours seems high!

Could you try USwitch or somewhere to get an idea of what other suppliers would charge you?

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