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    • what rights of access do you have on your agreement with the landlord?   i suspect you shouldn't have to pay a thing.
    • then there is your proof to them why would you pay for BB twice!!   for my notes: GENERAL NOTES ON CHARGEBACK & Continuous Payment Authority & BACS   .....  We have been telling people to put a letter into their bank instructing them  not to make any payments under any circumstances to these companies  . http://whatconsumer.co.uk/visa-debit-chargeback/- it works! usually this should be done using the number on your debit card  .  banks MUST follow written intructions from their customers ! . CANCELLING YOUR DEBIT CARD DOES NOT STOP CPA'S  .  This fsa guide has now been updated:  . http://www.fsa.gov.uk/static/pubs/consumer_info/know_your_rights_guide.pdf http://www.fca.org.uk/news/continuous-payment-authorities-your-right-to-cancel https://www.fca.org.uk/consumers/unauthorised-payments-account  .  Here's the text:  .  Cancelling a regular  card payment:  .  When you give your credit or debit card details to a company and authorise them to take regular payments from your account,   such as for a gym membership or magazine subscription,  it is known as a ‘recurring transaction’ or ‘continuous payment authority’.  . These are often confused with direct debits, but do not offer the same guarantee if the amount or date of the payment changes.  .  In most cases, regular payments can be cancelled by telling the company taking the payments.   .  However,   you have the right to cancel them directly with your bank or card issuer by telling it that you have stopped permission for the payments.   Your bank or card issuer must then stop them – it has no right to insist that you agree this first with the company taking the payments.  .  Be aware, though, that you will still be responsible for paying any money that you owe. and that CANCELLING YOUR CARD WILL NOT STOP THE CPA  .  ..  .  New june 2013  .  Regulator orders Banks and mutuals to review complaints about not cancelling recurring payments from November 2009.  .  Consumers who have set up a regular payment from their account will now be able to successfully cancel that arrangement   by contacting their card provider, the Financial Conduct Authority said.  .  The FCA has been examining how easy it is for customers to cancel Continuous Payment Authorities (CPAs)   due either to payday lendersicon or for other regular payments such as subscriptions or gymicon memberships.  .  CPAs, which are also commonly called recurring transactions or recurring payments,   are relatively easy to set up but can be hard to cancel, causing problems for consumers trying to manage their finances,the FCA said.  .  Now, following the FCA review of how the largest high street banks and mutuals process requests to cancel CPAs, they have agreed that they will ensure that when   a customer asks for a recurring payment to end, that will be sufficient to cancel the arrangement. They have also confirmed that should a payment go through by   mistake following cancellation by a customer the customer will be refunded immediately.  .  In addition to securing this commitment, the largest banks and mutuals have agreed to review every individual complaint they have received about the non-  cancellation of a CPA and to pay redress where payments have continued to be made despite the customer cancelling the arrangement. This applies to all complaints   since November 2009 when the Financial Services Authority, the FCA’s predecessor, began regulating banking conduct.  .  Clive Adamson, the FCA’s director of supervision, said: “It’s important that consumers are confident that banks are meeting their everyday banking needs. Today   customers can be confident that when they ask for a Continuous Payment Authority to be cancelled – it will be cancelled - and that it can be done easily.   . “We recognise that historically this is an area where some customers have struggled but the banks and mutuals have responded positively to our work on this issue.   From now on we expect them to be getting this right. In addition, they have committed to review past complaints.” .  .  Also mentioned your displeasure that as whomever took your money had obviously attempted this many times   probably activating your banks own anti fraud software - nobody had the decency to inform my you this was going on.? .  .In the FSA's own words:  .  ..  What should I do about a payment from my account that I didn’t authorise?  .  Your bank must refund an unauthorised transaction.   Money can only be taken from your account if you have authorised the transaction   or if your bank can prove you were at fault –  . see below.  Contact your bank immediately if you notice an unauthorised payment from your account. .  If you are sure you did not authorise the payment, you can claim a refund.  .  However, your bank does not have to refund you if you do not tell it about the payment until 13 months  or more after the date it left your account.  .  Your bank must refund an unauthorised transaction  .  ------------------  .  Your bank may only refuse a refund for an unauthorised transaction if:  .  ? it can prove you authorised the transaction  – though your bank cannot simply say that use of your password,   card and PIN proves you authorised a payment; or .  ? it can prove you are at fault because you acted fraudulently,   or because you deliberately,   or with gross negligence, failed to protect the details of your card, PIN or password in a way that allowed the transaction  .  -----------------------  .  How quickly must my bank refund me for an unauthorised transaction?  .  The bank must make the refund immediately unless it has evidence that one of the above reasons applies.   Your bank may ask you to answer some questions and fill out a form confirming what has happened,   but it cannot delay your refund while it waits for you to return the form.  If the bank has evidence that one of the above reasons for refusing a refund applies,   it may investigate before making a refund   but must look into it as quickly as possible.   If your bank rejects your claim for a refund it should explain why.  If the transaction was on a credit card, the refund may not happen immediately.   But the card issuer cannot charge interest or ask for repayment of the amount unless it can prove you are liable to pay        
    • Only asking because I want to get my facts right before I approach the bank! Yes, BT is coming out of the same account.
    • not if they want to make the OP the named claimant no!! let them take the other party to court themselves!! the op can be a witness then..   one bitten...read this thread..      
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appoline

Utilities, no central heating- epic bill- A bit weird!

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Hope someone can help me with this, the situation is a bit unusual I think as I have not found anything else similar on the forums.

 

I live in rented accomodation, a basement flat and the landlords (a couple) live upstairs in the main house. I have a standard assured shorthold tenancy agreement.

 

While my flat is self contained in a physical sense (ie, my own entrance etc and I do not share anything other than the garden with upstairs, and then we have seperate entrances to the garden) the utilities are all on one bill for the whole house, including my flat.

 

When I first moved in (over a year ago) it was agreed that they would look into splitting the supply for the electric, but until then we would simply split the bills- water (set rate) and electric, three ways, between the three of us that live in the building.

Not sure that it's relevant, but upstairs have gas aswell as the electric, but I don't.

 

Anyway, shortly after I moved in, the landlords got quotes to split the electric into two seperate billable supplies, don't ask me the ins and out of it all but it came to about £15,000! They could not afford to do this, which I understand, and we agreed to continue to pay the electric on an even three way split. (The bills are in the landlords name, I get a copy for my records and then pay my third to them.)

 

The first couple of bills (quarterly) all were fine, a little more expensive than I have been used to when alone (£150 each of us, then £170 each for the two quarterly bills that covered the warmer months) but ok.

 

Now, there is no central heating in the property, as the gas boiler having never worked in about ten years apparently, and they say that they have always gotten on fine in the winter with a gas fire and a couple of little heaters.

They agreed that by the winter, they would install some kind of heating for my flat, as there was no form of heating in there at all when I moved in.

Sure enough, come winter, they got two floor- affixed electric radiators that plug into the wall, and sorted me out for warmth for the winter.

 

Then came our bill for the quarter over xmas... £900 for the quarter!! So £300 each on our even split.

At first none of us could believe it, even though the bills are based on meter readings, we disputed it and the electric people came out to check it, and it indeed appeared to be correct.

 

It would seem that the two electric heaters in my part of the property were the cause of this, as nothing else had changed in either my or their parts of the building other than the heaters.

 

None of us were happy with this, but we did indeed all pay our parts. I cannot afford to maintain bills of that kind throughout the winter, and they both say that their part (£600 for the two of them) was way higher than they have ever paid either, implying that my use of the radiators has pushed the usage up in their part too.

 

Now while we agreed that the agreement stood, and that they cannot ask me to pay more of that bill even though they felt I caused the price hike, I was indeed pretty narked paying just my third, as I did not have a choice of what heating went into my flat and don't see why I should have to choose to either be cold due to their provision or to have bills that I can't pay.

 

We are now in a situation where none of us are prepared to go through that again this winter, I cannot afford to do it and also as I say, don't feel that I should have to when I don't get any say in the lack of central heating or what method is used to heat my part.

 

It has gotten to the silly point where they are saying 'well, you use more as you're at home in the day, and we only have a heater on for three hours a day'

-Yes, at the time I was working from home, but for the vast majority of the time only had the heaters on the very lowest levels anyway, which is the same as what I would have done had I been out all day anyway- And I don't feel that it is unreasonable for me to be in my property that I pay for when I want to be and expect to be able to keep it at an ambient temperature when I am!

While I am saying 'yes but I don't have a tv or any multimedia except from my computer, whereas you have three tv's and watch tv in seperate rooms each night, plus you have two fish tanks with heaters, filters etc, loads of games systems, music, security cameras and monitors etc...'

 

Of course, the simple fact is, that we will never know for certain how much electric each of us uses, hence why splitting it in the first place was a good idea until the quote came in.

 

Also I understand that the landlord is legally obliged to provide me with some maner of adequately heating my flat, but there is no proviso stipulated on that about it being at a realistic cost, so I feel that my hands are tied a little... It seems that as far as landlord/ tenant law says, they could provide me some kind of heater that required me to feed it diamonds, and though it would be economically unfeasible for me to do so, they have fulfilled their part of the law by giving me something and it's my problem if I can't afford to run it!

 

So basically, with this long and winding post, I am hoping for any help really-

From suggestions as to what could be installed for me to adequately heat the flat and won't bankrupt us, (I mean, I have looked into getting a freestanding gas bottle run upright gas fire, but working out the cost of the bottles would seem to have me paying out the same as I was with the electric...)

To where I stand on my entitlement (if any) to be able to say 'no, if I choose to be in my house 24/7 thats my business and I should be able to heat it for a reasonable and managable cost' or to insist that they install central heating, or what?

 

We are all meeting up in a couple of days to discuss what we are going to do about it for this coming winter, while we still have plenty of time to work something out, but I don't really have any ideas, and am not sure that they do either...

I can feel that it might just turn into a mutual moan as mentioned above, along the lines of 'well you're in more' and 'well its not my fault i've got electric heating' and just end up as a row.

 

So I am keen to have some suggestions of ways to go forward, or failing that, really just some info on where I stand in terms of having heat without extortionate bills etc?

 

Just to explain in case anyone asks the obvious question of 'what did the prior tenant do for heat before you moved in?' There was no prior tenant, the flat that I live in was never rented out before, the landlords had it full of their junk for years.

 

Any help apreciated.

Many thanks.

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to be honest with you I would probably look for somewhere else to live .... if you can actually seperate out the usage then there will always be the row about who uses how much

 

And those plug in heaters EAT electricity - whether it's on the high setting or the low setting it makes no difference

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The only suggestion I can think to make, is an oil fuelled heater. My dad has an office in our converted garage, which doesn't have any central heating either. The oil heater doesn't heat up particularly quickly but releases a small amount of heat constantly throughout the day.

I'm not sure how much cheaper this option is, but definitely cheaper than electric.

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Thanks both. Moving from here is not an option as I havepets which the landlords are fine about, my rent is cheap due to a few maintenance issues such as no carpet and the poor cosmetic appearance of the the flat, and I am in central London.

By the oil filled heaters, do you mean like economy 7/ storage heaters? They were the only thing I could think of.

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You could have economy 7 storage heaters, but iirc they do have a large installation cost.

Oil heaters are different and run specifically from heating oil that you pour in the side of the heater and it uses it as fuel, i've looked and the approximate cost of one of these is £60 - £100.

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Any heater which burns fossil fuel (paticularly stand-alone gas heaters, and to a lesser extent oil heaters) will give off high levels of moisture which may give you condensation problems.

 

Oil filled radiators are probably marginally cheaper than electric heaters.

 

As has been mentioned, storage heaters would be a reasonable option but the initial cost is high (I replaced 2 storage radiators in a 2 room flat and it cost just under £1,000). There would also be extra costs for cabling and a new dual meter if it is a brand new installation.

 

I know the initial cost would be high, but your LL's best option all round would be to install central heating. It could well be that the LL might be able to benefit from a grant for such an installation - always worth looking in to.


Kentish Lass

Information given is based on my knowledge and experience and is not to be considered as legal advice

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