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Direct Debits - what do I need to know?

Direct Debits - what do I need to know?
Userlevel 5

Updated on 25/05/21 by Jess_OVO

 

If you’re a Pay monthly customer on a fixed plan, you’ll pay for your energy by a Direct Debit, a month in advance. This is set up when you first join and amount you pay will be calculated based on the information you give before you switch.  As the amount you use may change, we’ll regularly check that the payment amount is enough to cover your energy costs and leave you with a clear balance at the end of your plan. 

Check out our Direct Debit “check in” process here or watch the video below for more info -

 

 

You can check your current Direct Debit amount and adjust this if needed on the ‘Payments’ page of your online account or OVO app (download for Android or iOS) -

 

 

Exact appearance may vary

 

There’s also some really helpful advice here in understanding the calculation we carry out when checking your Direct Debit amount -

 

Exact appearance may vary


There’s more great Direct Debit info on our Direct Debit - FAQs.

 

How easy do you find these Direct Debit calculations?

 

Got it sussed or still got questions? - Comment below, we’d love to hear how we can improve our Direct Debit process! :slight_smile:


65 replies

Userlevel 2
Can I check with you: If I switch to "Ovo Energy - Greener Energy Fixed (All Online)" does the fixed refer to the unit cost rather than the Direct debit amount? I am hoping that it is the unit cost and that you still evaluate usage and adjust the monthly amount accordingly.



Yes, this refers to fixed unit price. The DD amount will be variable, depending on your usage.
Is your OVO direct debit payment set at a fair and sensible level? I don't think mine is. After paying £70 per month for exactly one year (for dual fuel) I've ended up slightly in credit - which means the monthly payment was about right. Despite this, OVO has now pushed up my direct debit payments to a whopping £96 per month, citing "price rises" as the reason. This is a 37 percent increase, which suggests that OVO plans to hike prices by this amount in the coming year. Surely we'll all shift suppliers if that happens? Shame. OVO feels like a good company. I know I can force down the level of monthly payments, but having raised the issue with the company I'm told they stand by their estimate: £96 a month to cover a total fuel bill of around £840 in the past year. Does anyone have similar experiences?
Userlevel 5
Hi @robinj



I understand how frustrating it is when direct debits change, but am sorry to hear you have had so many problems.

The amount I pay has changed a few times since I became an OVO customer a little over a year ago, but I have always made the change in the hope of having a zero balance (or being in credit) at the end of the period.

Have you queried why the amount you pay cannot be reduced to be an amount you are more comfortable with?

The only other thing I could add that may help explain why the amount has increased and cannot be altered would be to do with an increase in energy costs - none of us like it, but it happens. I am not always aware that the cost of gas and electricity has increased, but then find out that is the case when the direct debit increases.



I hope your issue is resolved, and will keep following this thread to try to help wherever I can



Emma
Userlevel 6

That would be fine, @Derek Higgs! :)

Userlevel 2

Thanks Eva,sorted.

Userlevel 5
My direct debit has just changed for the third time in less than 12 months, which is a little frustrating when trying to budget, but I do understand the reason why and always alter the amount when suggested I do so in order to have a £0 balance or be in credit at the end of my contract.
Userlevel 5
My direct debit has just changed for the third time in less than 12 months, which is a little frustrating when trying to budget, but I do understand the reason why and always alter the amount when suggested I do so in order to have a £0 balance or be in credit at the end of my contract.



Good advice there, Emma_G! I appreciate how that can be frustrating (I feel the same when it happens to me!) but as the Direct Debit is based on consumption, there is a possibility that the Direct Debit will fluctuate.



Lucy
Can I check with you: If I switch to "Ovo Energy - Greener Energy Fixed (All Online)" does the fixed refer to the unit cost rather than the Direct debit amount? I am hoping that it is the unit cost and that you still evaluate usage and adjust the monthly amount accordingly.
I have recently joined OVO, and I am supposed to make my first payment on the 25th of april. however, I want my direct debit to be on the 1st of every month.

how can I change this?

thanks in advance.
This page will help I'm sure... It explains how to change it.

https://www.ovoenergy.com/ovo-answers/topics/payments-and-statements/payments/how-do-i-change-direct-debit-details.html
Hi there, just joined Ovo in my own brand new house after leaving the parental home. When i set up the account, I chose 2 bed semi and Ovo quoted me £82 a month via DD. It seems a lot to me, and now going through the new account wizard and refining my details (2 bed semi, 1 adult) it says I should pay around £40 a month.



Can I change my DD before my account starts in a few days time? Just the £42 a month extra is a lot to pay out when I know that I won't use as much as originally quoted.



Any help is much appreciated :)



Steven
Userlevel 3
Energy prices are always up and down, it's a highly volatile market.



Since June last year the Wholesale cost of Gas is up around 30% and Electricity is up way over 30%... This means that if you take out a new contract/tariff right now, or renew onto a new one, you kinda hafta suck up the higher rates... I checked my own increase this year after I renewed and although I too have had to increase my direct debit, the rise in rates with OVO is Exactly in line with the rise in the Wholesale costs, and I can't really bring myself to complain about that, not to OVO at least...



Some energy companies play games with prices, offering cheap deals for new customers by over-charging the loyal ones. OVO don't do that, they set prices at the lowest level they can manage based on current wholesale prices and "cost to deliver", and give those rates to Everyone, and I really respect that. I'm not subsidising a marketing drive, and no-one's getting a better deal than me cos they arrived more recently or pretended they were switching suppliers.



It's about integrity, and I say it's worth a few extra quid a month.



And just watch, when energy prices drop, as they inevitably will, I cast-iron guarantee you that OVO will be among the very first to drop their rates...
Userlevel 5
@Emma_OVO can you pick this up please?



I’ll pick this one up @Mattj3135 :)



Sorry to hear this is still ongoing @robinj. I’ve sent you a PM so that I can help further.



Lucy
Userlevel 6
You're a good egg @Lucy_OVO



Thank you
Userlevel 2

A few days ago I increased my direct,is ok to increase it again after such a short while.

Userlevel 3

@peterh I'd say contact OVO. If your usage is changing continuously then this may be the underlying issue with your Direct Debits. I had a similar issue where my annual gas usage was incorrect which increased my direct debits. I to, waswith EE and they had my had usage incorrectly recorded which had then been transferred over to OVO

If you don't have a smart meter then make sure you have a meter reading handy when you call. 

Userlevel 7
Badge +1

When you signed up, OVO would have told you the Ts & Cs which presumably said what the payments would be and when the first would be taken.  Your billing will be based on usage so you won’t lose out.

That's all very well but I prefer the money in my bank - not OVO

Userlevel 7
Badge +5

Good question @pizzard ! And welcome to the Forum.

The Direct Debit is set by estimating the annual spend and dividing this by eleven. This matches Ofgem’s guidelines that

  • the account should be in credit to an amount roughly equal to the next Statement
  • the Energy Supplier may not permit an account to operate below this threshold because that constrains the customer from switching to another Supplier if they chose to do so

There is a page on the main OVO site which allows you to follow through the DD calculation.

Userlevel 5
I have recently joined OVO, and I am supposed to make my first payment on the 25th of april. however, I want my direct debit to be on the 1st of every month.

how can I change this?

thanks in advance.




This page will help I'm sure... It explains how to change it.

https://www.ovoenergy.com/ovo-answers/topics/payments-and-statements/payments/how-do-i-change-direct-debit-details.html




Thanks, Padwick!



For your convenience, Dianna_OVO, I’ve merged your topic onto this existing topic that we have on Direct Debit queries. 🙂



Lucy
I recently changed OVO tariffs and the price I was originally quoted has already risen...from £69.00 per month to £98.00... this is quite a jump! My energy use hasn't increased significantly either so I'm a little confused and dismayed...please advise.
Userlevel 5
I recently changed OVO tariffs and the price I was originally quoted has already risen...from £69.00 per month to £98.00... this is quite a jump! My energy use hasn't increased significantly either so I'm a little confused and dismayed...please advise.



Your Direct Debit will be heavily based on your consumption as this is a reflection of how much you’ll be spending. Your unit prices and standing charges will be factored into this too though as it will affect how much you’re paying per kWh and per day.



I’d suggest providing us with regular meter readings (to ensure your bills are an accurate reflection of your usage) as it might have been that we’ve been over estimating your usage which is why your Direct Debit has increased. If you’re then able to decrease your Direct Debit off the back of this, you’ll be able to do so on your My OVO account.



Don't forget that the Direct Debit will also take into account your projected spend for the year!



I’ve also moved your topic onto this thread as there’s already a bit of conversation around Direct Debits on here.



Lucy
Hi there. I'm not sure if its a good idea to fix the prices - though I'm sure its likely to go up! I'm concerned as the suggested monthly DD is higher than I pay now - I understand why - but my usage is below by current DD anyway. Any thoughts?
Userlevel 7
Hi there. I'm not sure if its a good idea to fix the prices - though I'm sure its likely to go up! I'm concerned as the suggested monthly DD is higher than I pay now - I understand why - but my usage is below by current DD anyway. Any thoughts?



Hi Tracy71



Thanks for posting your question on our new forum. Great to have you on board.



I have moved your question onto this one as there is already a lot of helpful information here on direct debits and contracts etc.



I hope its useful, if you need anything further, please comment below.



Darran
Like Nicholas I also queried a whopping 33% increase when I owe £69 which will soon be cancelled out by the warmer months. All energy companies hike their prices in spring, it's a shame as Ovo were going to be the first energy company I placed business with for a second year. Even given the £60 exit fee (shameless tactic brought in since the govt forced companies to put people automatically onto the lowest tariff) I will still be quids in by changing supplier and the gentleman I spoke to in the call centre obviously couldn't explain the extortionate hike logically as I submit regular readings and haven't changed my usage.

At least he had the honesty to admit Ovo were no longer the cheapest - off to the comparison sites I go!

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