What is a Direct Debit?
A Direct Debit is the simplest and most convenient way for you to pay your energy bills. It is an instruction made by you to your bank or building society that authorises us to take an agreed amount and on an agreed date automatically.
The Direct Debit Guarantee ensures that we cannot take a different amount from your account or on a different date without sufficient notice being provided to you.
How do Direct Debit payments work?
A Direct Debit is a way of s-p-r-e-a-d-i-n-g out the cost of your energy by splitting up your yearly energy payment into regular payments.
For example, if you were to use £1200 in energy over a year, we could divide this payment into a fixed payment of £100 a month for 12 months. This way your energy use is covered all year, with no change to the amount you’d pay.
What we need to know to set up a direct debit?
It couldn’t be easier. As part of the sign-up process on our website or on the phone, we will ask you for the following information to set up a Direct Debit Instruction with your bank:
- Your name and address
- Name and address of your bank or building society
- Your bank or building society account number
- The branch sort code of your bank or building society
- The name(s) on the account
How do I set my Direct Debit payment amounts?
Your first monthly Direct Debit is based on the information you give us when you sign up: this will be based on the monthly payment value or annual energy consumption provided by you, or the estimated annual consumption based on the size of property, how many bedrooms etc. After you’ve been on supply for a month or two and have provided a few meter readings, you can choose your monthly Direct Debit payment amounts based on your energy use.
Payment Tracker can help with this. It’s in your online account and mobile app under your current monthly payment amount.
You can change your payment amount on your online account after we’ve had a recent meter reading from you. You can also use the Payment Tracker to make sure you’re paying the right amount to cover your energy use.
What is the Direct Debit Payment Tracker?
It’s a tool in your online account to recommend the monthly payments you need to make to pay for the energy you use. Your recommended payment amount is based on the credit/ debit on your account, plus the meter readings you’ve given us. If you are on track with you’re payments, the Payment Tracker won’t recommend any changes.
I changed my Direct Debit payment by accident, can I change it back?
If you have accidentally changed your payment amount, please call us and we can help you change it back to the amount you previously set.
My account is in review, what does that mean?
It could be that you are in the billing window or we’re double checking a meter reading on your account. If it is a few days before your next Direct Debit payment is due (usually within 10 working days) we can’t make changes to that payment. But you’ll be able to see and change the next month’s recommended payment.
Please check your account again in a couple days’ time and if your account is still in review please contact us.
Why has my Direct Debit payment changed?
We aim to review your account every 6 months. We’ll check to make sure that the energy you’ve been using is covered by your Direct Debit payments. Sometimes we find that we may have underestimated or overestimated the amount of energy you’re actually using each year. If this happens we’ll try to amend your monthly payment so that your ongoing energy use is covered.
Help us to help you: just give us meter readings every month to help make your Direct Debit reassessments more accurate.
If you think there is something wrong with your payment amount, please give us a call on 0800 088 4127
When will my Direct Debit payment be reviewed?
We aim to review your account every 6 months to make sure everything is running smoothly. If you have provided monthly meter readings, we will use these to reassess your Direct Debit payment.
If you would like us to reassess your Direct Debit sooner, please call us with a meter reading. Or alternatively you can manage your payments via your online account, where we will show you our best view of what your monthly payments should be to effectively cover the energy you are using.
Why can’t I reduce my Direct Debit payments further?
If we have not received a recent meter reading from you the Payment Tracker won’t be able to change your monthly payment amount. The Payment Tracker uses the credit / debit on the account combined with how much energy you have been using to suggest the best recommended monthly payment.
If you think your monthly payment should be lower, first enter a meter reading. You’ll then see an up to date recommended payment amount. You can do this by logging into your account
If you’re still having issues, please call us and we’ll help you.
If you’re struggling to pay your energy bills, please contact us immediately and we’ll discuss the options available.
What is the Direct Debit guarantee?
At Sainsbury’s Energy, we’ll notify you (normally within 10 working days unless otherwise agreed with you) in advance of your account being debited, if there are any changes to the amount, date or frequency of your Direct Debit.
The Direct Debit guarantee is offered by all banks and building societies which offer Direct Debits and protects you from any payments taken in error.
You can cancel a Direct Debit with us at any time by simply contacting your bank or building society. Written confirmation may be required. Please also let us know.
For more information on the Direct Debit guarantee please visit: https://www.directdebit.co.uk/Pages/Home.aspx