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Why has my Direct Debit been raised to an unreasonable amount?

  • 19 February 2019
  • 7 replies
  • 163 views

I have been with OVO for a year and just signed up for a 2 year fix. Over the course of the first year I paid an £80 direct debit, and in the final month of the year have gone slightly into debit by £40.

On the OvoPAYM page it forecasts my usage for the next year to be £1,122, which is around £94 a month.

OVO want to set my DD at £132 and will not allow me to set a lower amount. This seems unreasonable? I have emailed them but replies are taking days at the moment. Does anyone have any similar experience/advice? I'm happy to put it up a but, but not to £132
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Best answer by Slinky 20 February 2019, 02:41

Most likely OVO have set that higher amount until your account is back in credit again. Once that happens you might be able to reduce your DD inline with your actual usage. Looking on the bright side we're now entering the warmer part of the year so your account balance should soon begin to grow especially as you won't need the heating on so much.
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Userlevel 4
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Most likely OVO have set that higher amount until your account is back in credit again. Once that happens you might be able to reduce your DD inline with your actual usage. Looking on the bright side we're now entering the warmer part of the year so your account balance should soon begin to grow especially as you won't need the heating on so much.
It just seems odd that that want an extra £52 a month to clear a balance of £40. On reflection, whilst I have just signed a new 2 year fix, I wonder if because my first year's contract is coming to an end this month, whether are trying to zero the balance by the end of this first contract, hence the stupidly high DD request.

I have now paid off the debit with a top-up payment, so will see what they say.

Their algorithm seems very sensitive to increasing DDs, and this board is plagued with messages from people who can't get their overpayment credit back, hence my desire to avoid putting it up too much.
Also, don't know if anyone can answer - what recourse to OVO have to actually put the DD up? They keep emailing me to 'accept' the higher amount - which I presume means they can't put it up without my permission?

Is there anything stopping me leaving it where it is and just using top up payments for any months I go into debit, or is there a point where they can force an increase without the agreement of the customer?
Userlevel 4
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@photojonny

You might need OVO's advice on this one, sadly I can't explain the reasons for your increase beyond saying that perhaps it's an issue with the billing system. I too have noticed strange issues with direct debits or rather the amount I pay. Recently I put mine down having racked up £500+ in credit. I lowered it to the recommended amount and the following day that amount increased meaning I was now paying too little. Strangely however a few weeks later the recommended amount has now gone down again in-line with what I'm paying. Sensitive algorithm might be spot on!
I was paying 100 in direct debit and they have just increased it to 175!!! I joined in winter so not had time to build up credit during the
summer months, I have paid off the outstanding balance but it won’t allow me to change the direct debit back to 100, I’m happy with such a huge increase in payment, can anybody suggest something thanks.
Userlevel 6
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Hi @Andrea2807

Are your meter readings from a smart meter? Or do you manually enter meter readings?

Also, Direct debits are estimated by your usage. I would highly recommend you call OVO up and ask if it is possible to lower the repayments.
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Hi @Andrea2807 and @ITGeek123 - I've moved your comments onto this thread about the same topic.

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