On hold

Offer a payment skip/holiday IF an account is in credit by more than next DD

Userlevel 5
Idea Status: On Hold

There seems to have been a number of threads recently with customers indicating they have a large credit on their account and would like their money back. This means going into Wattbot and asking for it then the PP team look into it and take appropriate action.

What would be good, in my opinion, is to have the ability in the App to take a one off payment 'holiday' with a big clear caveat. The payment holiday can only be taken if the account is in credit by more than the amount of the next direct debit to be taken.

This means those with stacks of credit can look after this aspect themselves without involving Wattbot or the PP team.

Whether this is easy to do with regards to a DD, I have no clue!

5 replies

Badge +2
I think this is asking for trouble tbh. And even with lots of data it’s still only a ‘best guess’ how much usage a customer will have.

I think an app/web portal option to request last DD / money back would be better. But I would still only say if more than two or 3 months I’m credit.
Userlevel 5
Realistically a customer should never be 2 or 3 months in credit as PP don't want to hold customers money unnecessarily and there are DD reviews occasionally which should negate a large build up.

I would imagine it is harder/more work to ask for and get your money back than it is to stop 1 payment to be taken for a month. I might be wrong on that but this is why a skip 1 DD payment option makes sense to me.

The alternate being to pay interest on monies accrued in credit. There are a couple of energy providers doing this now, though I think PP have already suggested in another thread this is not for them.
Userlevel 7
Badge +9
Its a nice idea, but I think it might be as difficult to manage as to implement.
You don't have to wait for a seasonal review and its not hard to use the communication resource available.
Backed up by the community for those who have not resourced the tools.
You get quite a number of members who would like a refund, but their only approx 1 month or so in credit as the account was set up to run.
Hi @Jenam93
Thanks for posting this.
We're been looking into this one. It's an interesting idea and we like that your approach is to help our Members who've built up some debt.
But after some discussion we don't think that a payment holiday fixes the actual problem, which is that someone is paying too much. So we prefer to make sure the DD payments are correct. In other words, we want to make the DD payments more accurate, so we'll focus more on that.

We also think people might want a DD holiday a bit too soon as a PP Member, which could lead to debt after a few months. We'd maybe need to consider that they couldn't take a payment holiday for X number of months, but then that would annoy them, potentially. So it that respect it could end up winding somebody up, which is of course the opposite of what we want - and the opposite of why you suggested this idea.

There's also a small risk that someone who falls into a DD review and get a refund or lower payments suddenly takes a payment holiday, taking them from credit to being in debt, pretty much overnight.

And there's another risk that someone hasn't really projected their future costs (ie colder months) and so could end up in debt. To prevent that, the payment holiday tolerances would need to be really low, and that might just cause angst too.

So for now it's going to be placed on hold. Not rejected! Because it is a good idea, but as I've outlined here does have some risk, so we'd need to be careful on how we'd do it. Thanks again for posting it. 🆙
Userlevel 5
Hi Marc, understood and makes sense 😃