Three weeks before moving house I emailed FU (perfectly named) to advise them that I would be sending them a final reading. On the due date I did this but heard nothing. Eight emails and three phone calls later they have still not managed to send a final bill, let alone credit me with £247 that they owe me. I have of course received an estimated bill reducing my credit by £80 for a month I have not lived in the house. I am so frustrated by their useless customer service who cannot deal with the problem or send any kind of specific reply to emails. I can see that I shall have to sue them for the credit as they clearly have no intention of accepting the fact that I have moved house nor that I am owed money. DO NOT GET INVOLVED WITH COMPANY - THEY ARE THIEVES AND SHOULD NOT BE ALLOWED TO REMAIN IN BUSINESS. AFTER 8 WEEKS HAS ELAPSED FROM THE BEGINNING OF YOUR COMPLAINT, YOU SHOULD CONTACT OFGEM WITH ALL AVAILABLE EVIDENCE. IT IS UNLIKELY THAT THEY WILL DO ANYTHING BEING USELESS TOO, BUT AT LEAST IT LOGS INTO THE STATISTICAL VOLUME OF COMPLAINTS ABOUT THESE ROGUE COMPANIES.
If you're looking for reviews helping you to determine whether First Utility are a good company to be with, you'll be looking for a while.
I switched my energy supply to them nearly two months ago in order to get a cheaper deal. I wondered why I'd never heard of them before, and why their rates were so cheap, and so I searched for reviews. I really wish I'd done some research first, as the feedback was vastly negative, but I went and cancelled my registration on the same day.
My suspicions were raised when I didn't receive confirmation that I had cancelled. I sent a message to them via their website asking for them to confirm, which they did within a few days. Eventually, I even received the automated confirmation I thought I would have had when I cancelled it on day one.
You see, First Utility mentioned in their e-mails that with a sudden influx of customers, they are having difficulty keeping their IT systems updated, and that any responses to customer queries were taking up to four business days. This is also the problem that caused me to lose money.
Over the next few weeks, despite cancellation, I received e-mails telling me about joining First Utility. I responded, telling them I wasn't joining them, and that I was switching to EDF instead. I probably sent a couple of messages during this period, making sure that my registration had been cancelled. They confirmed that it had, and told me again about their problems with IT systems, and the influx of new customers.
Again, despite this, I received a direct debit confirmation a few weeks ago, for £76. This really agitated me, so I e-mailed to their customer service department. I was also frustrated as First Utility's messing around was interfering with my switchover to EDF Energy. This received a quicker response, within a day for some reason. They aplogised again for the e-mails. IT systems. New customers. Argh.
And lo and behold, last week they actually took money from me. I was furious. Just in time for Christmas too! I cancelled the direct debit with my bank, and I plan to block First Utility from taking any more money. I sent another, more angry e-mail this time, but I'm still waiting for a reply nearly 5 days later.
If you're on the fence, don't bother. They are a shambles of a company, and the only reason they can offer such amazing deals is because of the complete lack of customer service. Beware!
Jonathan C. Rhys found this review useful
You're supposed to have 12 days to cancel. After reading the appauling experience of customers on here we decided after 3/4 days to cancel our switch which we did via their website with all the relevant confirmations. They still emailed us as if it was going ahead and my wife replied confirming we have canceled the process.
I was shocked to see that over a month later they still took a payment of £102. I am currently waiting on the helpline for an answer to how quickly I will get this money back and why they STOLE it in the first place. It is not even the day we selected for the direct debits to leave! IT's the end of the month and we are now in financial trouble due to this noddy outfit.
(EDIT) Waited for over an hour to be told they could only speak to my wife despite the account not actually existing and requesting nothing other than the money to be refunding to the account it came from on an account they shouldn't have set up. I fail to see any data protection issue there, they admitted it shouldn't have come out! Luckily my bank (FIRST DIRECT - much better first based company) were able to stop the payment and cancel the direct debit.
We had received an email 2 weeks ago apologizing for previous automatic emails and confirming our account had been canceled (before it was created). The company obviously has defective systems in place and is totally unable to deal with an influx of new customers - they admitted their IT systems take a while to update. I would expect the experience of a customer for this company will be problem after problem, and hours of waiting on the phone to get problems solved.
EDIT 2 - Further mayhem from this crazy inefficient outfit. They emailed my wife (after telling me to contact the bank as they could refund the money) saying that they would refund the money via BACS. We now have to hope they get our reply asking them not to, otherwise we'll have to have more contact with them to get their money back to them.
Jonathan C. Rhys found this review useful
initial switch went well problems started after 6 month review tried to increase dd by 46% customer services didnt want to know wouldnt return phone calls ,e mails ,i had to stop dd to make them contact me all staff agreed new dd stupid but unable to stop increase after stand off reverted to original monthly dd then they didnt take dd was threatened with baliffs ect ended uo in last year paying 10 months dd plus final bill of £28 have now left never again you have been warned!
I got a new smart meter from First Utility in June. Three weeks later it was no longer sending my meter readings. Five months later First Utility have still not sorted my electricity bills. After numerous emails and calls you get very little help back in return. They have now double charged me for my electric and gas for the last 6 months in one bill this week. They have at last admitted its their systems at fault for my issues with the smart meter but have not fixed my bill or online account after this latest admission. With the smart meter not working I can no longer submit my meter readings manually so they can no longer charge me. I wouldn't recommend First Utility to anyone. They seem totally incapable of resolving customer issues or sorting out billing issues. There are much better energy firms available. They are very quick to take extra money off you by direct debit but never give it back even when over £400 in credit. AVOID AT ALL COSTS!!!
THE worst experience, I've lost count of how many times I've tried to contact customer service to no avail. I'm at my witts end. Hideous bunch of cowboys.
I read the disappointing reviews of First Utility after I had made the switch and was very worried I had made a mistake, but one positive review I saw hit the nail on the head - most satisfied customers don't bother to leave reviews. The communication was good and the switch over was completed a day early. The Direct Debit was correctly set up and taken on the day stated. My tariff is very good and will leave me paying only £30 more a year than my previous fixed rate with BG whose offer at the end of the fixed period increased by £170 a year on their "best" rate. I signed up via the Top CashBack web site and got £50 cashback for the switch. Two of my friends also switched at the same time and had a similar positive experience - must get them to post a review too. Well worth the move and I'm looking forward to my fixed rate to Apr 15. Well done first:utility!
Changed my energy supply account from british gas to First Utility but BG offered me a good deal to stay with them so cancelled, within the cooling off period, my agreement, then the nightmare began!
First Utilities IT system the took over and inundated me with e mails informing me of changeover dates setting up DD with my bank and in short ignoring my many e mail requests to them to stop this process and honour my cancellation.
I received two e mails from first utility confirming my cancellation and explaining their IT system was problematic but that the system would now recognise my cancellation and all would be put right. What a joke the system continued to try to set up DD at my bank, I have to check my account each day to cancel any DD they try to set up, only First Utility can cancel this DD as I had initially agree to set up a DD on their behalf but assumed they would cancel this once I had cancelled our agreement, wrong!
Even though first utility had informed me that they had raised an objection with british gas, this is the only way the changeover process can be stopped, their system continued to move forward to take over my supply of energy. The only way I could stop them was to telephone their office, had to wait one hour before I could be connected to their registration department who at last stopped the supply changeover, this process started around 20 th October, today 21st November I am still being informed by e mail they are still trying to sett up DD at my bank.
This companies method of operating is a shambles, keep well away from them
Jonathan C. Rhys found this review useful
Read the disappointing reviews of First Utility after I had made the switch and thought I had made a mistake. The switch over took longer than expected but I blame this on my previous supplier British Gas. I now give my monthly meter readings when prompted by e-mail and receive my bill around 2 weeks later and a date it will be taken from my account. I have an excellent tariff and my bills are a lot lower than they were with British Gas. Well worth the move and I am sure that some of the criticism of this Company is unfounded.
Possibly the worst company I have ever dealt with and there has been lots.
If you never have an issue on your account and go through the website then all is fine, but as soon as you have an issue you will spend much more with this company than any other through wasted time and phone costs. I set up direct debit 5 months ago but every month it doesn't go through, they don't notice and I have to chase them and they say it is all sorted and will go through next month. This involves waiting on the phone for 30 minutes every time before speaking to someone who never has a clue. In the end with my DD never going through they started sending me threatening pay-up letters. Raised an official ticket through customer support for HQ to deal with it - never heard back. Sent an email as they keep asking everyone to do on their phone line. Never heard back. So I paid online. Said it went through, but it didn't.. So two days later another 30 minutes wait to pay someone over the phone, who said there was no record of my online payment.
I WISH I had stuck with BG. It would have saved me a lot of money once you factor the time in. I never thought I'd say that, but in hind sight at least when you get through to a customer service person they sort things out.
AVOID AT ALL COSTS.
Despite numerous emails and continuing to take direct debits, still no bill since 12-Oct-13 and no meter reading requests, this company despite continued promises to sort their customer services out things just get worse and no reply to emails, telephone support can take hours to get through total lack of customer service Unfortunately this rating site insists on giving one star other wise it would not get even that
These guys are the worst utility company I have ever had to deal with! They may be cheaper at the moment but it has cost me more in time than I ever would have saved in the tariff! All the people on here recommending them have to ask themselves have they ever had to deal with them for any remotely out of the ordinary.
My tale starts when I started renting a property where they (First Utility) were already the supplier. Being a tenant i dont really want to start changing things especially as they have a smart meter installed.
Anyway i moved in and told them and the first bill they raised actually billed me from the date the old tenants moved out, not when i moved in. I phoned them and they couldnt seem to get their heads around what i was telling them. maybe because they are outsourcing a lot of their customer service to Sitel. Eventually they worked it out and created another account from the actual date i moved in. I thought then that was it, but they never ever dealt with the first account so for the last 4 months i get demands for an account that wasnt mine, then I ring them which always takes 40 mins to get through then a further 30 mins to speak to the "onboarding" team. They then say they have fixed it and then the cycle starts again.
I am now being threatened with charges for a debt collection in the same week were they have sent me a cheque for £30 because they got it wrong. I have spent at least 15 hours over 10 phone calls at my expense speaking to these clueless souls trying to sort it.
As i write this i am holding on the phone listening to a rip off of Coldplay - Clocks (their hold music) for what must be the millionth time.
I know all the energy companies are currently ripping us off and these guys seem to be "the good guys" but beware!!!!
Utterly Clueless and incompetent
Jonathan C. Rhys found this review useful
This is an update to the review I left previously: I was finally contacted by one of First Utility's consumer affairs executives, who was most apologetic for the whole sorry mess, and sorted out my account. She also waived the penalty for early cancellation and credited my account with £30 as a goodwill gesture. The shame about this episode is that it could all have been avoided, had it been easier to contact them directly - especially by phone. Looking at the other complaints on this site, that seems to be the root cause of all the problems. Until this charade, I had been happy enough with them. I believe their site is offline this evening - just hope it's to upgrade it so that direct debit details can be entered by the user, as other companies do. Had that facility been available, I wouldn't have even had the need to attempt to phone them.
I first came to know of First Utility after moving home. Nobody seemed to know who was providing my utilities but apparently they had been informed of the change of customer at that address. 2 months after moving in, I received a letter from them stating that my bill was outstanding and unpaid. What bill!?!?!? No introductory letter upon taking occupating, to welcome me to their services and notify me that they were my provider, oh noooo! So I contacted them, they stated that they are a paperless company and therefore I should log into my account to pay my bill on a monthly basis. What account?!?!?!? Problem no 2. Well apparently, I have an account with them online but they not only failed to notify me of how they operate and that I have an account but also what my login details are!
So, I dutifully login monthly, enter my meter readings and pay my bill for 4 months. First of all, none of the bills actually state that the meter was read, it is always 'estimated' which is not, because I read it and submitted the readings myself. Then in December 2012, I login to give my meter readings for November and was suprised to find that I actually don't have an account with them, apparently they do not supply services to my property!! What!?
Upon contacting them, they have no idea what has happened but will sort it out. 4 months go by, I am unable to submit meter readings or pay any bills because 1. I don't have any bills and 2. I don't have an account they can credit! They credited me with the amount I had already paid them previously.
Then in April, I am told it is all sorted. What they did was open another account for me and then bill me for the same period to December, but hey wait a minute, the bill is higher than it was previously. How can that be? Did I travel back in time and use more electricity??
It actually then turned out I had 2 accounts open for my property. The original one and the new one. The new one was not in my name! Eventually they close the new one and re-open the old one what the.....!?
I switched in May, I had had enough of these idiots. The could not organise a jolly in brewery (to put it nicely ;-) ).
My bill for being with them for 9 months? - £1500!!! The highest bills I probably have ever had.
STAY AWAY AT ALL COSTS. GO WITH A REAL COMPANY THAT HAS A PROPER CUSTOMER SERVICES, ANYTHING IS BETTER THAN THESE COWBOYS.
I switched from British Gas which I was satisfied with apart from BG's price and BG's call centre.
My First:Utility bills were much lower than BG, meaning that my initial standing order (direct debit) was too high. I was very pleased to find that FirstDirect's web site let me change my account payments. Their website was very fast and easy to use. I have not tried to phone the company.
Joined in Jan for a Smart meter - was reason I joined
Kept fobbing me off when asked when meter was being installed saying it would happen soon.
Then changed my tariff and said I never was on a smart meter tariff and i was not entitled to a meter.
So have paid for a service i never received. I would have choose a completely different tariff and supplier if i had of know this from the start.
Cant wait to leave - worst supplier out there
Oh and if you ever need to phone them - be prepared to wait and wait and wait on hold - Poor service
We bought a new build and FU were forced upon us as the developer chose them....stupidly. After months we finally got an account,( our neighbour is still wating after 3yrs) and they have taken erratic amounts monthly based on our brand new smart meter. The bills are much higher than other suppliers quotes so we tried to leave and they had us bound by a contract that the builder took out, but 3 years on we really need to get rid of FU due to high pricing and bad service. On trying to switch they have produced an £1100 bill after we have paid every month and they now claim the meter never worked...what and you never thought to tell us, and why was it irractic amounts which were dressed up to look like it was an actual reading? I am bracing myself for a long struggle to sort this out because you just know its not going to be easy, I wish we had switched on moving in and swallowed a leaving fee because we would probably have saved time and money. If you are thinking of using them then expect the worst and you will not be disappointed.
Cheryl Price found this review useful
Price seemed good to start with but then the proposed increase made them uncompetitive for me.
Since leaving, I have received a series of confusing bills, credits and payment demands, which I have ended up tracking on a spreadsheet to try and work out what the heck is is going on. They then took a DD from me after I had left and whilst they actually owed me money on my account. They eventually sent me a cheque, then I recently got a payment demand from them which I have tried to query by calling them. Calling them is a complete waste of time and money. I suggest they don't have hold music but have Stephen Fry reading the 'Lord of the Rings' trilogy as that is how long you will wait (in fact they might have to add 'the Hobbit') . Oh, hang on, why don't they employ more people in the call centre or is that too radical a thought.
Never again for me, you try them if you are feeling brave.
When I moved into my property in December 2012 I looked around for the cheapest tarrifs. First utility came up on price comparison websites so I chose to stay with this company. I am now getting statements for an overdue payment for when I didn't live in the property, when I spoke to FU I was advised to ignore any statements for the dates from july-November 2012 which I have done. When I recieved statements showing how much my balance was it turns out they were still billing me for these months. I have had to send in copys of my tenancy agreement and also covering letters and was told somebody would get in touch but still nothing has been resolved. This has been gogoing on for months now and it is a complete joke. When I phoned them to see if they habe received my cheque I was told this they didn't accept cheques by 1 advisor bit was advised by somebody else that I could pay by this method. I have also had problems submitting meter readings to FU and when I have managed to do this they "havent" recieced them. Can't wait to pay off my bill and move to a respectable company. I now have my gas supplied by n-power and I have to say the staff there are so helpful and understanding I can't wait to have my electric supplied by them.AVOID FU phoned FU today 22/10/13 and have been on the phone for over 2 hours trying to sort out their diabolical mistakes. after been passed from pillar to post and been told that they don't have an account for me I have to ask
1, if there is no account and I don't exist on their system, why the hell am I receiving bills?
2, why can 1 person find me then other people can't. I mean for god sake the only thing u didn't ask me for was blood.
3, why get me angry then try arugeing with me down the phone. when all I wanted to do is sort out this ridiculous account. DON'T TAKE IT OUT ON ME IF YOUR HAVING A BAD DAY!!!
4, why do I need to be transferred to a change of tenancy department when I moved in to my property nearly 12 months ago when all this was done in December 2012??
this service is the worst I have received by any means. this company needs shutting down if all they do is rip people off. sick of FU completely now. I would recommend people to stay away from this company unless u enjoy getting POOR customer service and incorrect bills.
wouldn't it be good if this company was on DON'T GET DONE GET DOM!!! wander how they would try and cover that up.
I joined 1st utility,as was attracted to 'outstanding service for disabled customers' What a load of rubbish. I have never been so badly treated in all my life! I was told that all my complaints had been addressed & that my account was clear,as I got fed up with them & left. Now, many months later, I am sent a letter from a debt collection agency & nobody in senior management will speak to me or make any contact.
BEWARE DON'T JOIN THIS COMPANY.
Unless you enjoy rude/useless customer service & rip-off prices & conditions.
I like many others switched to First Utility after seeing the many advertisements for them being the best priced and geared for the customer unlike the 'Big Six'.
But after having been with them for 7 months I can tell you honestly that non of that was true. We went through moneysupermarket to compare tariffs, ended up with First Utility as they were 'cheapest' but I can tell you they have charged as almost 15% more than British gas and when we try to query these bills we get stone walled at every turn, getting hold of their customer services by phone is nearly impossible and even if you do manage to get through more often than not within a minute or 3 you'll get disconnected. Then there's the level of indifference they show when dealing with customers.
We've now left them and I would advise anyone against them, the misquote on prices and are a nightmare to deal with.
Customer, no problems, supplied by another Company 1st week in June. Awaiting final bill (approx £10) but now owed approx £240 as continued to take Direct debit from my bank.
Letter 3rd June of almost double Direct debit due to cold weather, rang and reminded not a customer. Infomation ignored and full DD taken
Many emails as phone calls and on-line chat never answered even after on hold over hour each time.
Each reply stated billing team informed and final bill will be a few days and credit then arranged. Never a final bill or credit appeared.
Another DD taken in July which adds even more to refund to me. I left the DD in place as thought easier to re-credit money back to my account.
After several more emails and all replies of final bill produced next week, I cancelled the DD as did not trust them. Not surprisingly my Bank reported
they had tried to remove another monthly £130 in August. So at least my concerns where confirmed and could not trust them.
Elect supply ended 1st June 2013
Gas supply ended 5th June 2013
Last email promised Final bill to be produced and credit of approx £240 to be sent by cheque last week. Yet again this promise was broken with still no refund.
Also on 28th August my bank informed me of attempt to take another £130 direct debit even though not a customer. I had cancelled this DD due to DD being removed on July 28th which should not have been authorised. I felt I could not trust First Utility and therefore cancelled the DD mid August. The attempt on the 28th August confirmed my reasons to block any further DD.
I have repeatedly been told the final bill, probably less than £10 will be days away, but has now dragged on for over 3 months. I expect the cheque for credit ( approx £240 ) forthwith. I have been very understanding of problems but shortly will have to escalate problem as almost everyone of the fair practice codes and reviews have been broken and empty promises made.
I will not accept any further statements of billing section being informed, they have been informed at least SEVEN times now.
Please just send full credit that you owe.
If you value your sanity and spare evenings (now spent writing emails to first utility and about first utility) do not venture down the path of using them.
i used them for 12 months, never got a response when calling, couldn’t login online since they didn’t send a password etc, and finally when i moved home in May of this year- i still could not get shot of them. Mislaid final meter reading, sent wrong final bill (with wrong meter reading) and finally sent through a letter informing me of dept agency referral if i didn’t pay up. The day before a chap called Charles had promised us a final - and correct bill. Please use the opportunity while you have chance and avoid them. All of the people on this site are commenting negatively about First utility for a reason!
I moved over to first utility as price comparison sites suggested a cheap alternative to providing my electric and gas so I moved over.
What a mistake, they don't answer their phones, put me on the wrong tariff as I have a dual rate electric meter, messed my account up tried porting me over then debited a whole £700 in one go without advance warning in my overdraft!
The bills were much higher than previously I had received. I would never ever use this again and advise others to not use them too.
Since day one i have had issues. First unable to submit meter readings. Then to find my gas was not switched. Failed to inform me. Customer service is a joke. They think an automated email constitutes "contact" in their responding time policy. Now i have left them they send me an estimate bill despite giving them the readings. I have since had an email stating it will be corrected and in the email provided me with the correct readings. But still no bill. But threatening letters. These cowboys should get it right. I have all emails and letters and preparing legal action unless they reply. I refuse to ring them out of principal. I have constantly chased them and called them. I will just keep emailing complaints where I have a record! Stay away from them. They maybe ok for the lucky ones.. But i get the.feeling they are few and far between..... First utility.. Your initials some it up... And your slogan "There is a better way"..... You got that right... Change supplier. My next connection will not be with you.
Dear Mr Field,
You suggested if I needed further help that I should contact yourself. Well
I did by e-mail which, guess what, this has been ignored.
In spite of this I have been asked to pursue my enquiry this site appears the
only way to get a response from your organisation.
Two business sites would be interested in your services. Your sales department
have clearly decided to ignore your instructions.
I am at a loss as to why when a call to myself lasting all of ten minutes
would give me all the information I require.
Shall we try again?
D F Smith
I have been with FU for a while now and fell into arrears earlier in the year. I looked at customer reviews before contacting them to get an idea of what to expect - I was expecting a real fight and for the company to be totally unreasonable but that couldn't be further away from my experience,
I hadn't realised arrears had buit up unitl a very very large amount was taken from my account unexpectedly. I called the company (expecting a fight!) and they were lovely and sorted a full refund straight away. Fair enough, I had to wait a while in a queue to before getting through to someone but this is typical and the response once I got through couldn't have been more positive,
Unfortunately my bank then errouneously stopped my direct debit with FU and I still had those arrears to pay off. I got through to them again after they wrote and text about the cancelled DD and again, they were absolutely lovely. Understanding, helpful and polite. With no hesitation or resistance they sorted out an immediate and very manageable re-payment scheme and set up my DD again immediately.
They are also cheaper than anyone else I can find. M&S asked me to change and they had to admit that they couldn't match what FU charge me.
I love them and wouldn't dream of changing,
Oh - they put their last price increase off until April 2013 too to allow customers to get past the heavy winter fuel usage period - nice!
i cancelled my services at the start of the year and 6 months later i was and i am still chsing for my full payment, even better, i raised a complaint to the Consumer affairs team and was advised to raise an another complaint for that complaint not being dealt with, Eh!!!!!!!! customer service managers wont speak to me, as they were busy supporting the floor,"support" on another day they are on holiday, then they promise promise promise and lie lie lie about everything, what a bloody joke company they are...im still waiting for my full, they have only paid 2 parts of it, sick to death with first utility.....
Left FU three months ago, they still have not sent me a correct final bill and insist on sending incorrect monthly bills with bizarre readings. Spent over 10 hours on the phone and countless emails that just get ignored. I honestly wish I was never tempted by their cheap tariff. Call queues are ridiculous, the longest time I have spent in a queue is 70 mins to which I was still cut off. It also seems that their reps requeue you instead of taking the call, I worked in a call centre years ago and know the tricks. The average wait time is about 40 mins. Clearly untrained customer service reps who seem to tell you something different every time you call. Steer well clear, it has a 1.2 score for a reason.
Further to last review, I have received an email from FU, the most unprofessional email I have ever received:
Dear Mr. Wa*ker
Thank you for your email.
I have checked the final bill dated 30th July 2013. This is billing you for usage until the 7th of May when the account was closed with first utility.
Please do come back to me if you do not agree with this.
As always we're here to help
We have a wealth of information available online, please visit our help and advice pages to learn more and to manage your account.
If you can't find what you are looking for, you can always contact us here.
First Utility : Customer Service
WOW, that Mr W bit is exactly what you are thinking it says. The most unprofessional company ever!!!!!
I signed up to them 3months ago for a fixed price 2014 deal. Since then I have not received any bills yet. I have contacted them on numerous occasions by email/phone and all the time I got told: "we'll sort it out" and they never did. I have provided them with the meter readings on time and on 4 occasions I have provided reading even knows they didn't ask for it. Because I got fed up with them I have done the maths for them and calculated how many units I've used and then multiplied them against their unit price and added standing charge and still no bills issued yet. They advice to switch to fixed direct debit so that way I get away from a massive bill it's just a joke. When I asked when I can expect to get a bill I got told SOON. When I asked when is SOON, in 1mth time ,3mth time or in year time she wasn't able to tell me. POOR POOR POOR I wish I never signed up to them.
I joined First-Utility back in 2011 and then came to move house with a credit balance on my account last November (2012). At first I was promised a credit would be applied to the new account. Then I was told this is impossible so a cheque would be posted. Then I was asked to prove I hadn't cashed the cheque! Then I was told a credit would be raised to the next bill! 8 months later I'm still waiting. Give them a miss. Absolutely terrible.
I left the UK last year, and informed First Utility of this. I sent a final meter reading shortly afterwards, and also provided my new contact details so the final bill could be sent and the account settled. However, I have still not received a correct final bill from First Utility.
My monthly bills were on average £65 and never exceeded £100, but First Utility attempted to debit £1700 as a final payment even though I was up to date on my bills, had never missed a direct debit and had always paid in full and on time.
The situation has become so bad that I have had to close my UK bank account, even though I intended to keep it open as I travel to the UK frequently. I also have major concerns about how this may have impacted my credit rating.
The last straw was yesterday when I received a letter from First Utility to my new Irish address stating that they would send baliffs to to install a pay-as-you-go meter, and to extract payment for the erroneous bill. As I presume they did not intend to send baliffs to my new residence outside of the UK, I had to contact my previous landlord to advise him and the current tenant of the situation, who would have had to deal with this despite having nothing to do with the account.
I joined First Utility possibly over a year ago .. I joined by taking the duel service and what I ended up with was only electric .. I complained many times and tried to phone them ....well after waiting an eternity I asked for a ring back ..that was possibly over 7 months and still waiting ...I have also emailed a few times and only had 1/2 responses saying they would do something about it ..that was Nov/Dec
As before I said I was not sure of the date as to when I joined. I have now left them and joined edf ... I also feel that even if I have left before my years contact I have not broken it and should not be penalised as I am suppose to be on duel fuel ....
From the looks of my last account I am £400 in credit .. I wonder how long it is before I get my money back into my account ...
Just be wary of these things before joining as their communications is TERRIBLE which is a great pity as it could have been something worth while staying for ..
Therefore I can only give them a 2 star
I have yet to receive my credit from this company (around £580) Am not impressed at all .. Still not answered my email from 1/8/2013 regarding my refund and again could not get though to them on the phone..
Although I have noticed they have now closed my account and took out more money for services not used..
I have been forced into contacting the energy complains as this complaint has been going on for long enough
Also changed star rating to 1
I jad intial problems with First Utility not answering my emails. After my 3rd complaint email, i eventually got a response. My main complaint had been the date for taking the money from my account. After some discussion and phone calls back FROM First Utility, this was sorted out. Still not the exact date I want but close enough.
Since then, my bills have been spot on. My readings are always exactly what i say and im in credit but not by loads. They sent me one email saying they were going to increase my payment for 1 month but also gave me the option of opting out which I did as I knew how much energy I had used and I would be okay.
Only reason not getting 5 stars is due to the initial problem
.I was informed on my February 13 statement that I was due a dual fuel discount payment within 28 days by cheque. This amount having not been received by May I spoke by phone to a David on the 9th May who apologised and said he had arranged for an urgent BACS payment to be with me within 7 days. Again nothing was received and on the 20th May I again called First Utillity and spoke to Shona who again apologised , told me that the payment had been cleared by a supervisor called Indy. She said she would email accounts department and call me back the next day . No contact was received the next day and hence I called back today 22nd May and spoke to a Mark. This gentleman was most unhelpful and basically told me that Shona would get back to me when she had received an answer from accounts dept. , he would not give any idea when this would be. This situation is most unacceptable, the money in question ( some £140 + ) is due to me and I believe that I have been most patient in this matter, furthermore my account as it stands is in excess of £400 in credit , since I made a payment to cater for future bad weather. Since the above I have sent an email highlighting the problem along with 4 "on line" chats all without success. Currently another representative is again investigating...lots of promises witout any action!!!
I consider that I am a good customer who is being treated in a shabby manner by this company
Kapton Keyron found this review useful
1 . Is this answer from the complaint department?
2. You wrote in this answer from the 16th May "I apologise that we have estimated your usage to calculate your bills. Unfortunately, these estimated readings aren't shown, only the amount used is stated on the bills." YOU HAVE NOT UNDERSTOOD MY COMPLAINT AGAIN.
I AM NOT COMPLAINING ABOUT THE FACT THE READINGS ARE ESTIMATED. I AM COMPLAINING ABOUT THE FACT THE ESTIMATED READINGS ARE NOT WRITTEN ON MY BILLS. I AM COMPLAINING ABOUT THIS FOR A YEAR NOW, SINCE MY FIRST BILL WITH YOU BUT NO STAFF SEAMS TO GET IT, EVEN SOME OF YOU TELL ME IT IS WRITTEN.
I am not asking for my bill to be exact I am asking to know how you have calculated the usage for each month. The usage being the reading from this month (estimated or not - minus the reading for last month. I repeat my question for the 10th time: Why are the readings not written on the bill.
I have been told 3 times that the readings where written. If the reading is showing could you please print it and highlight in a bright colour the readings and send it back to me. Even if the usage is estimated it should be based on Estimated readings and I should be allowed to know what are the reading you have estimated to make up my bill. I am asking those questions since my First Bill with First Utility one
year ago and don't get a suitable answer.
3. You wrote in this answer: "In order for us to amend this, please email us your readings and we will manually log these. We can then perform the estimated usage reversal where we will credit any amount over paid for based on the estimated usage."
When you ask me to provide you with yet another meter reading it seams to me that you are trying to find ways to lose even more time and not answer the question. But despite the fact you NEVER answer my question, I answer yours.
On 28th April my electricity read: 12763 KWH on 17th May my Electricity reads 12831KWH on 23rd May my Electricity reading is 12860
On 28th April my Gas reading was 1254 (not able to enter online) (I emailed Customer services and <private data removed>) and today it is 1279 (still not possible to enter online after sending you 3 emails about this).
4. Now please could you answer the other questions:
complaint: Case number 00381022 - ref:_00DD0lhTh._500D0MQpC3 Why am I not getting answers?
5. On the 15th May was the anniversary of my move to First Utility and First Utility is not fulfilling the promises they made when I joined, I still have not received a smart meeter. Can you give me a date please?
6. On 21st Feb 2013 <private data removed> from Consumer Affairs had written "As we have provided you with a level of service below that which I would have wanted you to receive, I would also like to offer you a £50 goodwill gesture to compensate you for some of the inconvenience we have caused. This will reach you via BACS payment within 7 to 10 working days" Noting received yet on 23rd May.
7. <private data removed> had also promised that I will receive the Full Duel Fuel Discount on both gas and electric from 15 May 2012 could you please make sure the promises above are fulfilled.
Could you please pass those questions to Complaints department before I contact Ofgem or whoever is in charge. , Account Number - 482670, Postcode - HG1 4TE
In 2012 august to october i had 3months with fu big mistake my bill where way out would notexcept my readings i then started getting other peoples bills i left fu in oct 2012 i throught that was the end of it i should b so lucky may 2013 i am now been bombarded with texts saying i owe fu money i rung fu up they say my
Account is clear i have had 2nasty voice mails on my phone saying fu are coming to cut me off each time i ring fu i am on the phone at least 20mins to b told i dont owe theres never a sorry or they look in to it or even a manager to speak to i have now 18th may started to get other peoples bill again i have sent them 2 emails which they have yet to answer
This company is a nightmare rude unhelpfull they are cowboys
I remember looking at this page and thinking, "Oh no this company looks terrible". However, after looking at other reviews on companies such as Npower, Scottish Power etc. etc. they ALL seem to get really bad reviews! Therefore, I believe that on the whole, the only reviews you will read from customers are ones that are negative... (Who thinks you know what I've had no problems for 12 months so I think I will write a positive review!). Either way I decided to go with First Utility and what happened? My bills went down, I take more notice of my energy bills and haven't had any problems. The reason I haven't given a 5 is because I can't commetn on customer service as i haven't needed to contact them. However, I get regular updates via email and the webpage is very interactive. They told me that one month my bill had to be £10 more because I was using more energy (fair enough it was a particularly cold and wet winter) but they sent me 2 emails warning me and gave me the otption of disputing it etc. Therefore, in summary, you get cheaper bills, a lot of self-management via the web and (for me) no hassle in swapping over. The only thing that is difficult to get used to though is uploading your readings. Even though you get reminders, it's difficult to remember to go and write them down and then go back to your computer to upload them but I guess I just need to get used to that!
First Utility -should not be allowed to trade!
Failure to set up Direct Debit, threatening letters with regard to debt collectors, kept on hold for upto 40 minutes trying to contact Customer Services, severe lack of communication between depts internally, profound lack of Customer Service, inadequate answers given, failure to call back,, demanding texts, letters, emails even when I am awaiting an answer & my account clearly says do not contact customer until answers provided to a query, THEN once all monies paid via debit card prior to my transfer AWAY from FU (due to their failure to set up DDebit) I get an email asking for all monies to be paid!!!???!!! Finally I am now emailed again saying that I owe £2.05!!! Unbelievable
WORST EXPERIENCE OF MY LIFE!!! Very very stressful.
DO NOT RECOMMEND AT ALL!!!!!!!
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