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estimated readings??

  • 14 October 2020
  • 8 replies
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When I joined and the reason I joined was "we don't estimate readings" and when I questioned this to make sure the response was "we pre-buy gas and electric in advance so that's why we don't estimate, however due to this you need to make an advance payment". I'm ok with that yes and the rep said "when would you like your direct debit to come out"? To which I responded the 1st would be best. So why o why are my bill's estimated and why is my direct debit on the 14th? I'm starting to think this is just another lying bunch who talk rubbish just to get you to sign up....

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Best answer by Nataly 14 October 2020, 16:55

Hey @Neil1980 

We collect your first Direct Debit on the date you come on supply, and outline that date in your Welcome Pack, emailed when you switch to us. The Direct Debit is set to be the same date each month after. 

If you’d rather the payments come out on the 1st each month, you can change your Direct Debit date in your account under ‘balance and payments’ :thumbsup:.

We send a meter reading reminder each month, a few days before your bill is due. If you enter your reading(s) a few days before the bill is generated, we’ll estimate the usage covering the days between. There’s more info on that in our FAQs which may help, too :slight_smile:

Just to let you know, I’ve edited your post slightly to remove any profanity. 

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8 replies

Hey @Neil1980 

We collect your first Direct Debit on the date you come on supply, and outline that date in your Welcome Pack, emailed when you switch to us. The Direct Debit is set to be the same date each month after. 

If you’d rather the payments come out on the 1st each month, you can change your Direct Debit date in your account under ‘balance and payments’ :thumbsup:.

We send a meter reading reminder each month, a few days before your bill is due. If you enter your reading(s) a few days before the bill is generated, we’ll estimate the usage covering the days between. There’s more info on that in our FAQs which may help, too :slight_smile:

Just to let you know, I’ve edited your post slightly to remove any profanity. 

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When I joined and the reason I joined was "we don't estimate readings" and when I questioned this to make sure the response was "we pre-buy gas and electric in advance so that's why we don't estimate, however due to this you need to make an advance payment". I'm ok with that yes and the rep said "when would you like your direct debit to come out"? To which I responded the 1st would be best. So why o why are my bill's estimated and why is my direct debit on the 14th? I'm starting to think this is just another lying bunch who talk rubbish just to get you to sign up....

Hi Neil1980, I’ve been with Pure Planet for approx 3 years and have found them to be a really honest, transparent organisation. Posting here will give you support & assistances from other customers, like myself. So, you’ve hit a couple of issues which Nataly (who is a PP manager) has responded to. If your still uncertain about how to move forward, come back here and other, more energy knowledgeable customers, will add their thoughts & solutions. 
Regards 

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hi @Neil1980 

I don’t think the responses you’ve had so far adequately address your post. Your post has some statements in it which are errr...concerning (I was going to use the words pejoratively accusational but maybe that’s a bit too strong) and need further investigation or information (in my opinion).

First of all you can’t set your direct debit date when you start. The date when your first DD is taken will always be the switch date and the switch date is almost always 17 days after you instigate the switch (assuming no snags), so if someone from PP told you otherwise that’s incorrect. When were you told this and who told you and where did the call come from?

If someone employed by PP told you otherwise this needs looking into.

As said you can easily change the date after the first payment is taken.

The statement about we don’t use estimated readings has to be taken in context. No energy suppliers are psychic readers, of course they don’t use estimated readings if they can get a real reading. They always want real readings for your sake and their sake. But, that depends to an extent on the type of meter you have and some reasonable collaboration with the customer if possible (i.e. you) who is asked for a start reading and to give subsequent monthly readings unless they have a smart meter which will (eventually but not immediately) do it for them. That part of your post holds no merit whatsoever as far as I can see.

Finally did you feel you were pressured into signing up? I doubt you will have had a call unless you instigated a switch first so where is the pressure? Lets have some details about how where and who that happened?

I don’t work for PP.

Ok. What a response! I hope that positivity continues. It seems PP staff really care that's nice. Please excuse my profanities! There is merit to my negativity however. 5 years ago I had a problem with npower which resulted in ofgem ruling charges unfair and taking my side though I'm still having trouble having this removed from my credit file despite being completely unjustified. Then I went to british gas. 2 months in I realised the prices were higher despite the lower unit cost in which some minor investigation revealed they'd removed my economy7 meter without my knowledge. So no more washing at night to save cash. Octopus were better, I only left due to a price increase and a very large credit due to unrealistic estimations.

In this case, PP have been quite good in respect to not having problems, I'm sure theres no issue moving the direct debit date so no problem there. I'm not a complete idiot yes usage needs to be estimated to a certain degree but I did move to PP because I pay for what I use at the time and dont build up a huge credit which PP can claim interest on via secondary investment. I was SPECIFICALLY told by PP that useage isn't estimated on the large part which is why I was to pay a small prepayment and that PP buy their gas and electric in advance. Great. Calls are recorded so if this is incorrect then staff can investigate. Yes I also understand that winter brings higher usage and obvious cost increase. I can't help wondering after 3 months my direct debit has increased and I'm £160 in credit before the increase. I hope I have a positive experience with PP I'm glad others have. I cant help feeling that given recent experiences the original promises aren't adding up. 

 

Off topic, I recently had problems with TalkTalk. 3 weeks my internet was down.  The line was dead and being an ex telecoms engineer I know exactly where the problem was. They did everything in their power to worm out of paying bt to send an engineer out to the local exchange. When I asked them to cancel the contract they wanted £158 for me to 'buy out'. Nobody said anything regarding the £8 per day credit I was owed and it wasn't until I complained on social media that I was able to sort it and get out. 25 failed phone calls and 10 attempts at web chatting to Africa was infuriating. I signed up for life insurance with legal and general 4 months ago, I couldn't register online at all and after 5 emails and went unread and no chance of a talking by phone ie no contact whatsoever I stopped the direct debit. They soon got in touch. I moved property and Virgin couldn't supply the new address, I paid what I owed and left, a year later I found a black mark on my credit file saying I defaulted when I didn't, I still can't get this removed despite even working for them for a while.

My point is this, the majority of companies in which a contract is required are usually ok at first but once theres a problem, customer service is either atrocious or non existent. Then they have the power to ruin your credit file. Consumer rights have gone completely out of the window. If you don't stand up for yourself you get kicked around. So please excuse any negativity but I keep my eye on what I'm told before and after I sign up to a contracted service.

I’m keen on standing up for myself; I think you’ve taken it to another level. I suspect you might be pleasantly surprised with PP. Let’s wait and see.

You probably need to know you can review your account DD payments whenever you need. Hit the ☰ in the app and Get help & support, then Ask a question and type review my account.

By the way, PP doesn’t have a phone line, so I’m curious how you got to be speaking with them to elicit the responses you mention…

By the final final way @Neil1980, is it a big birthday for you this year? Congratulations if so!

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hmmmm

I’m keen on standing up for myself; I think you’ve taken it to another level. I suspect you might be pleasantly surprised with PP. Let’s wait and see.

You probably need to know you can review your account DD payments whenever you need. Hit the ☰ in the app and Get help & support, then Ask a question and type review my account.

By the way, PP doesn’t have a phone line, so I’m curious how you got to be speaking with them to elicit the responses you mention…

By the final final way @Neil1980, is it a big birthday for you this year? Congratulations if so!

@25 quid I think I can help with that one,  as far as I know PP use (or used?) a farmed out call facility in South Africa to call some? customers (perhaps those who have switched and not verified? perhaps in other instances too) to check if all is well or they need help. Some calls may come from Bath too, I don’t know, but I do know they have used the SA call centre. There were also instances of non-compliant (by which I mean they didn’t comply with PP’s standards of literacy (or much else) emails on behalf of PP, I think PP may have since squashed the bugs on that one. There are no incoming lines as far as I know.

So the upshot is some customers or would-be customers do get calls as do some of those who leave.

(Apologies if  I’m wrong and this has since changed?)

 

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Hi @Neil1980 

This is an interesting thread! The regulars here are very confused about your phone call, because, as @woz said, we've only ever heard of phone calls being used by PP on very rare occasions. Anyway, that's one for PP to clarify - @Nataly ? 

There's two things you've said I thought were worth commenting on: first I was SPECIFICALLY told by PP that useage isn't estimated on the large part which is why I was to pay a small prepayment and that PP buy their gas and electric in advance. 

This links together some statements that in themselves are true (roughly) but in a way that becomes potentially unhelpful. Nataly has explained that you are asked for your readings every month, but unless you send them on the exact same date that your monthly statement is issued, then your statement will show an estimate to cover the day/days between your reading and the statement date, as well as showing your actual reading.

This has nothing to do with the fact that you pay your direct debit in advance each month - does that count as a small prepayment? I'm not sure it does, really.

Neither does it have anything to do with PP buying their gas and electricity in advance.

Then you posted I can't help wondering after 3 months my direct debit has increased and I'm £160 in credit before the increase. 

I'm guessing that your direct debit has increased because everyone's October direct debit is the first at the winter payment rate (everyone pays less in the summer, more in the six winter months). And because you pay in advance, you should always be at least one month's payment in credit. My account is usually most in credit in September/October because my summer usage is so much lower than winter. I'm usually slightly in debit by March, then it gets back into equilibrium in the summer. If your credit does build up because you use less energy over the months than was estimated when you joined, then PP check your account every six months and will suggest adjustments if necessary - and if you think your credit is so high you can't wait for that, then you can request a review at any time.

Hope that offers a little more clarification.

Stephen

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