Consistency in policy and T&C
I've been thinking of posting some questions on this subject ever since @Allanr pointed me specifically to the T&C. Several people on here, including me, have echoed the Bulb "requirements" of paying in advance and maintaining the account in credit at all times. Those comments notwithstanding, how do they correlate with the T&C found here? Perhaps @DanP at Bulb can offer advice.Allanr said:
Separately I have concerns about the way Bulb calculates the proposed increase to DD and the possible wording of the emails suggesting such increases, these I have mentioned on quite a number of other threads. I fully appreciate the rationale for ensuring customers don't fall into arrears and landed with large payment requests.
The relevant paragraph is 3.16:
3.16. You must keep your account in credit by paying for the supply in advance by automatic payment, or if you're in debt with us, you agree to not be in debt by more than half of what we've calculated as being your expected annual bill.This clearly contradicts itself. You must keep your account in credit, or at least not in debt by more than half the expected annual usage. As far as I can see, there is no term that states the account must always be in credit, and certainly nothing that specifies how much credit must be on the account at the start of the winter months. If Bulb policy on this has changed, then the T&C need to be updated and the changes notified to all customers. There needs to be a clear paragraph on exactly how much credit is expected to be in an account on a day defined as the start of winter, say 1st November, and additional terms defining how this is handled in the event that someone switches to Bulb at the start, or just before, the defined winter period.
The current situation where the terms allows a debt of up to half the expected annual usage, but in practise being expected to maintain a significant positive balance clearly cannot go on.
3.3. If you have a standard meter, you must either pay the amount shown on your bill in accordance with your chosen payment method or the fixed amount you have agreed to pay.There have been several comments recently where customers would like to just pay the bill each month, and not spread the payments out through the year. We're told this isn't possible and the way it works is the standard 1/12th payment system used by many (most?) suppliers. But that is not what is said according to paragraph 3.3 and 3.8. How does one go about simply paying the stated bill each month, either by Direct Debit or Debit card, rather than paying a standard monthly amount? How do these two terms not contradict paragraph 3.16 which requires automatic payment in advance? Why does paragraph 3.13 discuss non-automatic payment when this contradicts 3.8 that says automatic payment is required?
3.8. If you have a standard meter, you agree to pay for your energy by monthly automatic payment by Direct Debit or by Debit card.
3.13. If you're not paying by automatic payment, we will issue you an invoice for payment monthly, which you will have 10 working days to pay from the day you receive the invoice.
There we go ... that should keep discussions going for a bit.