Finance

Bitter pill for Welcome Energy customers: rates at Eneco much higher

And as expected, those rates are a lot higher than what they paid before.

Spitting bile about high rates

For gas, customers will pay 1.80 euros per cubic meter. A normal rate of EUR 0.493 per kilowatt hour applies to electricity and EUR 0.419 for the off-peak rate. Fixed delivery costs of 5.99 euros per month also apply for both gas and electricity.

The rates are not only higher than what customers paid at Welkom Energie, they are also considerably higher than prices at a competitor. One of the affected customers shares the prices she will pay at Vattenfall: 0.824 euros for a cubic meter of gas and 0.243 euros per kilowatt hour of electricity.

The higher rates and the associated increase in the monthly amount are, to say the least, not well received by the 90,000 customers concerned. On Twitter, among other things, they spew their bile about it:

One of the duped customers explains in a twitter thread that Eneco also uses a cheaper rate, in their model contract. This is an energy contract for an indefinite period, with variable rates that can be adjusted on 1 January and 1 July.

All energy suppliers must offer such a model contract to make it easy for customers to compare the rates. However, the rates are not listed on Eneco’s site and the duped customer indicated that he had to push the customer service nicely to get them to the surface.

The information in his tweet appears to be largely correct; only the price for gas is 0.842 euros per cubic meter and not 0.824, says Eneco spokesperson Edwin van de Haar. “However, if customers choose to switch to this contract, it will not be at the current rates. Given the exceptional market conditions, these will be adjusted in the coming days.”

Energy purchased separately at higher prices

According to Van de Haar, the Welkom Energie customers have a legal notice period of 30 days before they can switch suppliers. They would therefore not be able to switch to this rate until 1 December.

“This option is not included (in the offer for Welkom Energie customers, ed.) because we had to purchase separately for the former Welkom Energie customers, at significantly higher prices. So that is not possible at these rates,” adds the Eneco spokesperson for this.

The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets confirms that the maximum notice period for Eneco is 30 days. “A company may also choose to make it a shorter period. Eneco is not obliged to offer the model contract to these customers,” says spokesperson Tjitte Mastenbroek.

However, all energy suppliers are obliged to put the rates of a model contract on their website. In that respect, Eneco (but also Vattenfall, for example) remains in default.

Switch already

It is also remarkable that some customers say that they have already switched. One of them says that he can contact Vattenfall on 18 November because a blockade on her contract was removed on 2 November. Anonymously, she shares the screenshot below:

The twitterer who shared the rates from the model contract also wants to remain anonymous. He does say that, if he wanted to, he can already switch to that contract. Includes lower rates.

The answer from Eneco’s spokesperson to this is short: “I don’t know anything about that. See consuwijzer.nl for the rules.”

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