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Increasing direct debit whenever meter readings are entered

posted by David | A year ago

Hi - we have solar panels and tend to be in credit a lot of the time, as we use our generated electricity, rather than bought electricity, whenever we can.  We find it frustrating that everytime we enter an actual reading to correct an estimated reading, the website arbitrarily decides to increase our direct debit payment, generally to twice what we are currently paying.  It's particularly galling when the account is in credit anyway, the proposed direct debit increase simply serving to run up an even bigger overpayment. 

The website invites you to decide your own DD figure, but the slider does not go down as far as the figure that you are currently paying, so there is a still an unnecessary increase proposed.   You are left having to phone up and get the customer service assistant to manually put the DD back again (or in our case lower it further, to get some of the overpayment back) and in busy times, that can leave you hanging on the phone for 45 minutes plus.   

Please can either the automatic increase in DDs be stopped when entering meter readings, or the slider be allowed to go to at least the current level of DD to stop this frustration.

6 comments

posted by erlingtheelder | A year ago
Re: Increasing direct debit whenever meter readings are entered

Re post Meter Reading entry DD automatic increases. The other thing the on line Direct Debit manager does on my account is impose a mandatory additional payment if I reduce the new direct debit amount to its previous level. This is depite my account being comfortably in credit! In effect a one off 'penalty charge' that's in multiples of the monthly payment reduction. Very annoying. Unsurprisingly, the Direct Debit management tool does not however penalise account holders wishing to increase their Direct Debit payments. I suspect in your case a penalty charge would only serve to increase your irritation!

posted by Brummie | 12 months ago
Re: Increasing direct debit whenever meter readings are entered

Scottish Power should be made to start paying interest on credit balances. My credit card company does this and so can Scottish Power. The direct debit manager is not set for 'break even' so if you spend £1200 every year, your direct debit will not be set at £100 but £134.44 per month. This is silly.

New changes Scottish Power have introduced, any change to your direct debit incurs Penalty charges so they can make more money is utterly annoying. Hopefully they will read this and instead of being greedy will be more reasonable.

posted by DavidOwens | 8 months ago
Re: Increasing direct debit whenever meter readings are entered
I have the same issue. For some unknown reason my monthly payment went to over £3000 from £56. Now I have a constant battle as it is increased at every review and I have got to make the dreaded call. 20 mins today and the phone has cut off. I will move provider as soon as my fixed tarrif is over. A once good provider now attrocious .

posted by Jonnel | 8 months ago
Re: Increasing direct debit whenever meter readings are entered
That's interesting to hear... When I went to enter meter readings to my online account one month last year, the figures already on there were higher than my meter said they currently were. I phoned, and in their defence SP corrected, but when challenged over whether or not they'd been hacked, or had a data breach but they insisted they had had neither, yet could offer no explanation over how my figures were wrong. Be interesting to know how many other online users have had odd figures crop up on their accounts...

posted by harfield2 | 8 months ago
Re: Increasing direct debit whenever meter readings are entered
You will not be the only one changing provider, wonder how many customers they will loose because of there Greed.

posted by Hooloovoo | 7 months ago
Re: Increasing direct debit whenever meter readings are entered
I would suggest submitting monthly readings, rather than waiting to correct an estimated bill.