Monday, March 17, 2008

What happened there then?

The last few weeks have been a complete blur. Today was the day I was supposed to be getting back to normal, but it just feels like I have an ever increasing 'to do' list. I am slowly working through it though.
I had a couple of bureaucratic phone calls today which just made me mad. One to pay a bill (which isn't due to be paid til 29th March) which the company had written to me twice about and they had phoned my husband to remind him I had to pay it also. When I phoned them, they asked loads of security questions to make sure it was me!!!!!!!!!! That got me going for starters.
Then I phoned SSE Power Distribution. We have asked them to increase the power supply to our house so we can have a decent electric shower. So they sent us a bill for the cost of the works, it is full of jargon and they have never been to the house to actually see what is needed. They won't even talk to us until this bill is paid and there are a lot of clauses about how they can charge us extra if they see fit. So I thought I'd better phone to get a couple of things clarified before sending off the cheque, after all they have given the full name and direct number of a contact for just these questions. Good job I did. Turns out the work they have quoted for is not the work I had asked for! Both electricians I have asked for advice think the cables between the outside and my meter are too small and old looking. I would have thought that if the supply to the house is increased then the cabling must be made to comply with building regs also. Well, apparently not. Barbara Colquhoun (my contact at SSE) who has never set foot inside my house, says my cables are fine - there is nothing wrong with them, they have managed just fine up until now. And if that doesn't answer my questions and I'm still confused then I should go and speak to my electrician! How's that for customer service? Should I send the bill from my electrician to Barbara at SSE who just can't be arsed to her own job properly? No, I suspect not.
I can feel a letter of complaint coming on.
Too often companies rely on our complacency to rip us off and give bad service, well I think I feel the need to stop being a party to that little game.
The other company who have excelled at this recently are Direct Line who gave us a renewal quote for our home contents and buildings insurance for £900!!!!!!!!!!!!
When we phoned to tell them Tesco had quoted us £178 they said 'actually we underwrite Tesco so we can match that quote'. Thanks but no thanks!

Grrrr, it makes me so mad!