E.ON worst offender for paying solar FiTs
An exclusive survey from Which? has revealed the worst culprits for making feed-in tariff (FiT) payments and it seems energy provider E.ON is by far the worst.
The survey has revealed that many Which? members have had to wait up to three months to receive the money they are owed from generating their own energy from the installation of solar photovoltaic panels. Whilst energy providers expect home owners to pay for their heating and hot water bills quickly, it would appear that the same cannot be said for home owners waiting for to receive an income generated through the FiT scheme. It’s a case of double standards with energy providers giving little regard to home owners by making them wait weeks and weeks to receive their entitled payments.
According to Which? 36% of their members – that’s in excess of a third – have endured issues and delays when it comes to receiving FiT payments. Of those who had experienced problems, a whopping 82% said it was due to payment delays. The delay was so bad for one in five that it took three months more than they had anticipated it would before they had received the money they were entitled to.
The online survey was conducted during November 2012 and took into account the views of more than 1,700 Which? members who a) had solar panels and b) were eligible to receive FiTs. E.ON and SSE came out the worst, with a significant number of E.ON consumers (72%) saying they had experienced payment problems. Although not as bad as E.ON, 46% of SSE customers experienced similar issues.
Ofgem, the energy regulator, states that unless a contract says otherwise FiT suppliers have to make payments to customers quarterly. Interesting, according to Which? feed-in tariff contracts for both energy suppliers fail to specify a deadline for payments.
Addressing the outcome of the Which? survey E.ON apologised for its poor performance and said they had unfortunately faced unforeseen problems with moving customers over to a new automated payment system. The firm pointed to payment delays being attributed to surges in demand for solar panels during busy periods which occurs when changes to the feed-in tariff rates are put in place.
Since Which? highlighted the issue SSE is now aiming to get payments out to customers within 28 days.