Too high payments

I live on my own and bulb want over £150 a month for my electric and gas. According to the gas and electric usage I have used less than £50. What is going on and do others have the same experience?

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Hi @Hotspur223 :wave:

Thanks for posting. I’m sorry to hear that your payments are high at the moment.

This is due to the fact that your payments were not covering your usage for a few months when you first signed up with us, which meant that some debt built up in your account. For example, your first payment was around £90 and your statement was around £200.

It would be irresponsible of us not to increase your payments, as we don’t want to worsen the debt in your account.

When you sign up, we recommend inputting your estimated annual usage (which you should be able to get from your previous supplier) so that you can get an accurate quote for your payment. Otherwise, we just have to use an estimate which isn’t always quite right.

Sadly we haven’t had a meter reading from your electricity meter for a little while - would you be able to provide one so that your next statement is accurate please? We have a guide if that’s helpful to you.

I’m sorry about the stress caused by your payments. If you’d like us to send you an email to discuss this more thoroughly, please do let us know.

Take care,

Niamh :bulb:


I believe the £200 usage was incorrect which is why the payments are wrong. There is no way I was using the amount of gas and electric bulb stated. I struggle to read the 2 readings for electric and I am on your scheme that says you should read the meter for me but you haven’t done so yet. The gas meter and electric meter are smart meters but you only seem to be able to read the gas meter which doesn’t make sense as they were installed at the same time. Please can someone read my meter and then you will have accurate meter readings or make it so you can automatically read the electric meter. I would send you photos from your app that shows usage but you don’t allow this for new users which is bizarre.

@Hotspur223 Did you sign up for quarterly meter readings in your Bulb Account? I can’t seem to see it there. I recommend you sign up to our Priority Services Register for this- Visit your Bulb Account to sign up so we can make sure to help out where we can :relaxed:

It also looks like the gas and elec meters on your account are just regular credit meters :thinking: I’ll send you an email now so we can take a look at them in more detail and figure it out

– H :bulb:

Just like to say thank you for Holly at Bulb support for sorting my query. Payments are now at an acceptable level.

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You want to put my monthly payments up by nearly £30 a month? I live in a 1 bed flat on my tod. I spend about 4 hours of an evening listening to music watching tv and cook myself a bit of grub 5 days a week. I’ve had months where my metre reading was less than my previous months estimated reading. I’m in credit at the beginning of summer. Taking the piss.

Hi @Dalrae

It looks like your account is in a bit of debt which is why the payments have been advised to be increased. On average, based on the meter readings we have, you use about £100 of energy a month, but your payments have been around £85. This means that overtime, you’ve been slightly underpaying- this does take into consideration that winter you’d use more and summer less, but based on the current trajectory we’d need you to increase payments to cover your use and stay out of debt.

You can check to see how much we think your monthly direct debit should be taking into account your usage and any debit on the account here: Bulb account

You don’t have to change the monthly amount, it’s just a suggestion based on your consumption. As we get more meter readings over summer and can see the use lowers, the debt will be cleared and you’ll be able to adjust it back down again :blush:

I know people with 3 bed houses and kids with lower bills than me I’m in a 1 bed flat just me. Out of the flat at least 10 hours of the day sleeping for 6 or 7 and rarely in at weekends. Something isn’t right. Either the metre or your calculations.

I am having the same problem, at the beginning that started to charge me £89 now they asked me £155 only electricity and for only one month. My flat is small and is only for 1 person. Now I have a debit of £350. I ve called many times, I chat with them and nobody give help me. I’ve asked them to come and check the meter reading, that maybe it could be working bad, but nop. Also they told me that is because I did not summit the meter readings, during the lockdown, nobody in my building was working so I couldn’t have the meter reading every month, and the way that Bulb “estimates” the energy usage is a bit tricky. Yesterday they cut me off in a chat again. I called a lawyer from the citizen advise and they have told me not to pay anything until they can clarify this issue. I am very very sad with this situation.

Hi @Dalrae

It looks like your usage has been quite varied throughout the year - your statement in February was a lot higher than it was in June. We therefore need to make sure your account is in a good position for when we move into the colder months and your usage starts to increase. Your suggested monthly payment amount will cover your estimated monthly usage, as well as a bit extra to bring your account balance up to date.

It’s unlikely that the meter is faulty but you can always do a check to see if it’s recording your usage correctly. The test is called a Burns Test, and it basically means turning your electricity off at the fuse box, and if your meter is still ticking over then yes it would be faulty and we’d get that replaced for you. If you do do this test please let me know the results.

All the best,
Megan :bulb:

Hi @rosecaro - welcome to Community :slightly_smiling_face:

I’m really sorry to hear you’re having an issue with your payments, and the service you’ve received.

Your account with us opened in October 2020 and we didn’t get a reading from you until April 2021 - I appreciate this is no fault of your own though as you weren’t able to. The reading we received in April showed that we had been underestimating your usage, so that high bill was to cover your usage that month as well as what we had previously underestimated. This has resulted in your account falling into debit, so your suggested payment amount is to cover your usage as well as paying off the outstanding balance over 6 months. If this amount isn’t manageable for you, I’d advise you fill out a financial assessment with Tully. They’ll get back to us within 1 working day on what you’re able to afford. You can read more about Tully here.

Regular meter readings are really helpful to stop these issues, so would it help if we signed you up for quarterly meter reads? Alternatively, you could get a smart meter installed free of charge, which will submit automatic monthly readings. You can get this booked in through your Bulb account. If you’re renting the property I understand this might not be possible though, so it’s one to check with your landlord.

All the best,
Megan :bulb: