Everything Is Slow

I use the App to monitor my account. My direct debit payment always shows on my account late by a couple of days.

I want to lower my monthly payment via the App but it won’t let me.

Can anyone tell me if this is because the last payment has not updated yet or has the “you chose what you pay” situation changed.

My account is in credit but by more than is necessary once my last payment is shown.

I have tried several times to use chat but it never works.

I presume staff are all furloughed but technically customer service and data management can all be undertaken in many other ways.

Things need to improve as the pandemic is not going away any time soon.

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I’ve found it best to avoid trying to change the payment amount for the 7-10 days before the payment is due, and until after the payment is shown as settled on the account, which usually takes a few working days after the payment is taken.

Thanks Shaun

I will give it a few days and try again

Hi @HGS,

We’re all still working just from home.

We have altered our system for changing your payment amount. At the moment, you will only be able to lower you payment to 90% of what the suggest payment amount is. However, if you need to lower more than this we will require you to speak to one of partnered financial advisory services. If you would like, I can send you an email with more information?

Also, @shaun8818 is bang on. It is best to not change your payment 10-14 days before your next payment date. If you do change the payment, there will no be enough to schedule the payment for your upcoming payment date so our system will reschedule for the following month.

Thanks for keeping your customers advised of changes. (Sarcasm)

I have given the App and account time to update and I am now in credit to the tune of around a months use, but the App refuses to allow me to pay for what I will use as opposed to being your interest free lender.

I posted a 1* review on TRUSTPILOT where it has to be said there are a lot of unhappy people so in the mean time I await the email contact from your Finance Team (a title that makes me sound like some dodgy debtor needing help) and have frozen my direct debit to focus your attention as ignoring people has become endemic.

A direct debit that went out on Friday should not in this era show up the following Tuesday. I can send money out of the UK that arrives in 30 seconds In the new country, the bank, my account and my App.

Clearly you need some better developers.

Why should it do that, when that’s not the way you agreed to pay when you signed up? If you want a pay-on-bill tariff then you need to switch to a supplier that offers that if there are still any left.

I’m afraid you’re being rather optimistic about the nature of the banking system, and the many levels of layers, wrappers, and idiosyncrasies that it involves. Just because you can use Faster Payments to send a payment that arrives in 30 seconds, doesn’t mean that same system applies to Direct Debits. Note that even Faster Payments are guaranteed to arrive only by the end of the next business day. Yes many arrive in seconds to minutes but it’s far from guaranteed. The direct debit system is very very slow. Blame the banks, because there’s nothing much businesses can do about that. Some choose to make transactions appear faster by posting them before they’re officially cleared, but that doesn’t mean they’re actually faster and it does sometimes end up causing confusion when payments get returned.

In many cases the banking system involves layers and layers of APIs that have been wrapped around the original 1970s COBOL that everyone is too afraid to touch or replace, where systems appear fast and modern but still rely on hidden slow transactions runs to be finally cleared.

Hi, a bit presumptuous to tell me what I signed up for given the FACT that the bulb guy Noah has stated the system HAS changed.

Having stated I am looking at alternatives I am glad to read that in your opinion I should look elsewhere. That is very reassuring to know “random guy” considers I am right.

I altered my direct debit as required to ensure I had a small credit in place but was not acting as a bank. I have done that from day 1 a period of at least least 18 months with no problem and an App that told me it was happy.

The remainder of your views appear to be stating as a coder or someone with coding knowledge that the developers are frightened to do a better job and the banks give me money I have not given them. Fat chance of that.

I don’t really feel you have offered anything to change my opinion except blame me and excuse Bulb.

May I suggest you go to TRUSTPILOT and read a few posts.

You may wish to go back quite a few months to my last post where they stated improvements were in hand.

Perhaps they were too scared to make them!

I posted facts you posted guesswork. Opinions are two a penny.

I’m not assuming anything. Bulb have only one set of terms and conditions for customers, so I know exactly what you agreed to when you signed up as a customer.

The only thing that’s changed in this context is the minimum payment level that customers are able to set for themselves via the dashboard. The way the monthly payments work remains the same.

You’re posting on a public customer forum, so you’re going to get replies from “random people” whether you like it or not. If you didn’t want a reply from “random guy” then I suggest you should have restricted your communication to the private customer service channels.

But that’s not how you agreed to handle your account. Bulb, and many of the smaller energy suppliers, take payment in advance. This means that your account shouldn’t have a “small credit” but it should have a credit of at least one of your monthly payments, which I note your original posts says you now have. Perhaps you should have read this help article before switching to a supplier that didn’t operate the way you wanted.

Not sure what you’re on about regarding “the banks give me money I have not given them”. I never said anything of the sort. I did say that the bank developers are frightened to fix 50 year old COBOL that no one knows how it works or exactly what it does any more. The reason is because when banks do try to move to newer systems the whole thing collapses and takes them a week to sort out, as we’ve seen several times in the past now. This is why the whole “fintech” sector has exploded, because they’ve had the opportunity to build whole new banking systems from scratch, something the old lumbering banks can’t do. None of this is anything Bulb can do anything about.

Don’t get me wrong, I agree Bulb are terrible. That’s why I’m no longer a customer. I switched to Octopus two months ago. My experience so far is Octopus are a tech focussed company far in advance of Bulb, who appear to have stalled and now have more in common with the lumbering traditional suppliers. I note that Octopus also take payment in advance and expect me to hold credit of at least one monthly payment at all times. Right now my credit it building up over the summer, so that my monthly payments remain the same even when my bills get much larger in the winter, which is exactly what’s supposed to happen.

Bulb are awful. Just not for any of the reasons you’re complaining about.

The only reason I saw this thread is because I happened to have an email notification about a reply to an older post of mine on a different thread. I don’t come here much any more. So you’ll be pleased to know you’ll be unlikely to see many more posts from “random guy”. Well, except for all the other random guys on here of course.

Enjoy your day.

I appreciate your clarification from your perspective but for many reasons I do not agree.

Firstly if a part of a service changes the customers need to be told and I have had no such communication. I presume this may be because it is a retrograde step customers will not be happy with.

There is no rule that you have to be a month in credit and there never was. If there was I would have been pulled up on it during the 18 plus months of membership and not have an APP telling me everything was fine. In fact often my account recommends a lower payment.

A useful piece of information I was not aware of is that Direct Debits are on a 3 working day cycle. The money leaves an account but takes 3 days to be validated. I presume this is to avoid chargebacks.

Realising this and the fact this month did have a weekend Tuesday was the third working day.

I won’t go into the rest as my post related to why I couldn’t change my payment and that was answered on day 1. The post could have been closed then and I have answered my own question about the Direct Debit.

Given you have left bulb I am amazed you spend time here but lockdown is a “bit*h”.

Thanks for your input perhaps you thought the question was more technical than I intended.

Keep well.