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Warning to tenants - don’t be tempted by Don’t Pay UK

A warning has been issued that anyone wanting a mortgage in future may put their credit rating at risk if they take part in the Don’t Pay UK campaign.

The campaign - which has secured high levels of publicity although little backing from other organisations - says it demands ”a reduction of energy bills to an affordable level.” 

It aims to get a million people to agree to cancel their direct debit to energy companies by October 1, after which date the energy cost cap will be lifted to new levels. 

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The campaign claims: “Even if a fraction of those of us who are paying by direct debit stop our payments, it will be enough to put energy companies in serious trouble, and they know this. We want to bring them to the table and force them to end this crisis. Here’s how we think we can get there.”

However, personal finance expert Tara Flynn - founder of energy cost comparison website Choosewisely - says: "I empathise with the campaign encouraging people to cancel their direct debits for their energy bills. I understand that for change to happen, sometimes you have to get radical, and I applaud the sentiment behind it when it feels like so little is being done to help. However, I'm gravely concerned about the long-term consequences of not paying energy bills for individuals. 

"If you don't pay your bills for months on end and ignore all requests from your energy provider for payment, your provider could issue you with a County Court Judgment, which will be kept on record and appear on your credit report. Unless you pay what you owe within 30 days of receiving a CCJ, it will stay on your credit report for six years, meaning it will be challenging to apply for credit during that time, making it much harder to get a mortgage, loan, credit card or even a mobile phone contract.

"For many, borrowing might be the only way to stay afloat during a potential recession, meaning The Don't Pay UK campaign could make things even harder for the very people it's trying to help”.

So far the most confrontational of pressure groups lobbying about rents - Acorn and Generation Rent - have remained silent on the Don’t Pay UK campaign, although some activists have been involved in small scale and short lived rent strikes in some student accommodation in recent months.

Meanwhile Cornwall Insight - the consultancy whose forecasts on the energy price cap have fuelled the public debate in recent weeks - has comes up with more bad news.

A statement from the consultancy says: “Our new forecasts for the January Default Tariff Cap have risen by over £6,501, meaning a typical household is now predicted to pay the equivalent of £4,266 a year for the three months to March 2023. Forecasts for the October cap have also seen a rise, going up by over £200, and with predictions for an average bill now sitting at £3,582.

“The increase in our forecasts since last month reflects both the increase in the wholesale market in the intervening period and – crucially in the case of the Q1 2023 (Jan-Mar) and Q2 2023 (Apr – Jun) forecasts – a change in calculation methodology set for finalisation by Ofgem. 

“In its initial proposals from May, the regulator stated that an element of supplier costs associated with wholesale market hedging would be explicitly included within the cap methodology and would be recoverable over a 12-month period. However, in the consultation documents released last week, it was confirmed that these costs would be recoverable over a six-month period – resulting in higher bills than previously forecast for the crucial January cap.”

Want to comment on this story? If so...if any post is considered to victimise, harass, degrade or intimidate an individual or group of individuals on any basis, then the post may be deleted and the individual immediately banned from posting in future.

  • George Dawes

    So far the most confrontational of pressure groups lobbying about rents - Acorn and Generation Rent - have remained silent on the Don’t Pay UK campaign,

    although some activists have been involved in small scale and short lived rent strikes in some student accommodation in recent months. !!!

    Oooh such rebels

    That’ll show uncle klaus and his wef pals 😂

  • George Dawes

    Generation rant activists withheld 3 days beer money in protest and nobody gave a BEEP

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    I have said for a while now, this will kill the house price increases and cause them to fall, I also think we will have civil unrest in the 1st quarter of 2023. Sad and difficult times ahead, hold on tight.

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    No matter what, the increase in energy prices is what climate change zealots wants. Net zero etc. Zealots such as Carrie Johnson, Prince Charles, Klaus Schwab et al Really pauperdom is just around the corner, in the shape of a caliphate.

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    Direct debit is only one payment option. Some companies give a discount for DD payment, others don't.
    Some companies have spent the last 10 months thoroughly abusing the DD system, taking unjustifiably high monthly payments and then refusing to refund credit balances.

    I had accounts dumped on British Gas, EON, EDF and Octopus last autumn.
    British Gas are incredibly hard to deal with. They are supposed to give a discount for DD payment but then had a glitch on their system and wanted to set my monthly payment at over £5000 a month.
    EDF have various payment options. If you pay by fixed monthly DD they only issue a statement twice a year at which point they refund your credit balance and then double your DD payment. If you want monthly statements you have to pay by variable DD or some other method.
    EON didn't produce a bill for the entire 8 months I was with them for 4 of the 5 accounts I had. I switched to another supplier in May, got the final bills for 3 of the accounts in July complete with the £30 compensation payment for late billing and was supposed to have the credit balances refunded buy 29th July. It still hasn't appeared in my bank account. The 5th account still hasn't been finalised.

    Octopus have been far better to deal with. They don't offer a DD discount so I tend to pay with a debit or credit card. They produce a bill every time a reading is submitted which makes monitoring usage and budgeting much easier.

    So while I don't condone non payment I can see why paying by other methods is very attractive.

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    EDF's fixed monthly DD system is totally ridiculous. I've been complaining about it to them for 2 years and counting...

     
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    Do stop paying the Energy Companies that would never do they might go bust, like the 16’000 firms that got covid loans gone into liquidation leaving the tax payers to pick up the Bill £500m and counting.
    Its fine to stitch up your Landlords that always helped and supported you keeping a roof over your head even when taking a big hit through Covid.
    2.5m private LL’s as Stake holders who have no say, not Represented and ignored when legalisation been drafted and implemented. This treatment is reserved especially for LL’s no other Business sufferers this faith, yet we House several million Tenants for sure off our own back efforts so finance. I don’t believe the number of Tenants usually quoted as seems low, a 2 bed Flat probably has 3 to 4, even a Studio have 2, a house probably 5,6 or 7, you do tho maths as they say.

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    The low life element don't care about a CCJ they likely couldn't get a loan, credit card or phone contract anyway, and as for a mortgage that's never going to happen, we need good honest working tenants ONLY and there are plenty of them out there, leave the low life tenants to councils and housing associations where they belong .

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    It's not just the low life element considering this.
    It's also degree educated, middle class homeowners.

     
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    Yes Jo, degree educated, but zero common sense, they will likely need credit one day so a CCJ will hurt them

     
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    Andrew - I have always stayed away from the lower end of the rental market, i understand there is money to be made there, but for me it's simply too much risk and hassle, so i have always targeted the very top of the rental tree, and had zero issues in all the years i have been in the PRS. Tough times for everyone i think.

     
  • George Dawes

    I’ve got a shop with bulb , electric has doubled , for no reason I can fathom apart from sheer greed

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    I have an empty house with Bulb, they are getting very upset with me because I'm refusing to set up a DDR, I've told them invoice me and I'll pay for what little is being used, I'm also paying monthly invoicing at home, no DDRs

     
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    I worked for British gas for a long time. It was very ancient when l joined, but was modernising fast. It was hell for leather. They went from loss making to making over a billion pounds profit in the early 80s. Worked for offshore storage, 10 years ago, they had been looted ! Stuff British gas would have scrapped years ago, stil being used. It's a classic case of the Tories looting everything ! It was using an indigenous resource, and now we import it from the Arabs in LNG carriers, which is regarded as Britain's storage ! Further we are importing LNG from Arabia, deluiqyfying it and pumping it out to Europe, which they are storing iin underground caverns.

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    Don’t forget to tell Sid.

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    You are a helluva man, Micheal. BTW. I am heterosexual ! Watch GB news !

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    I wouldn’t know I am celibate 😂

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