Work has ground to a halt. Yesterday the lead boys arrived, pleasant, hard working lads they were making a cracking job and should have been finished today. However, they got called away to an emergency roofing job on a 4 storey house. Meanwhile the weather chucked everything at us, including hail and snow while Mr FF battened us down, apart from a few gaps which will be covered by the tarpaulin tonight. He's gone off for more supplies and hopefully work will resume tomorrow.
So I've spent the day battling with our gas and electricity supplier, Extra Energy. We hadn't had a gas or electricity bill since we moved here 19 months ago, meanwhile they've been very happy to take £114 a month out of our bank account. There was a problem because our gas meter wasn't on the national register for this apartment, we gave them the correct details when we moved in and 8 months later then sent someone out to confirm these details. We've given them meter readings, phoned endlessly got absolutely no where, the whole things is now with the Ombudsman.
However today we received our very first energy bill, up to November 2015, which showed us on that date being just under £600 in credit. So obviously Extra Energy have decided to up our monthly payments by £12 to £126 per month. I reckon even with the power we've used we are now about £800 in credit and will be adding an extra £50 to their coffers every month. Today I spoke to customer services, the billing department and the meter department. Customer services asked for a meter reading, we have given then endless readings the latest a month ago, billing said they couldn't give us our money back or adjust the payments (except upwards obviously) because they haven't changed the meter number. The meter lady said yes she had all our details from 2014 but had sent the details off to the wrong place, apparently some independent body actually owns the meters, and then done nothing to find the right place.
I'm sure plenty of you have had the same sort of problems, its appalling, its enraging and it stinks. The worst part is spending all this time and getting absolutely no where, speaking to the Ombudsman's office today they said compensation is usually between £50 and £100. Our average phone call to extra energy is an hour because we start at the beginning every time and fight back when they try to fob us off with promises of action that never comes. The compensation figures probably don't equate to the living wage for the hours spent.
I keep trying the tactic that we are living on our pensions, we can't afford to give them an extra £50 a month to keep in their bank account and why should we, it doesn't have any effect. I do wonder what would happen if we cancelled the direct debit, which we cannot alter ourselves (except upwards), would they disconnect a couple of pensioners I wonder, especially when it's like this outside today.