Cape Town prepaid electricity woes

K3NS31

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I wonder how NERSA would respond to this - I mean surely buying prepaid for electricity should be ringfenced for electricity else the effective rate would be in excess of the prescribed rate.
It does seem rather dodgy.
 

isie

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Under 3 months worth of rates. probably 2.5 - they could've just sent an SMS or email reminder. Would've gotten their money sooner.
Knowing them they would charge you 300 bucks for the SMS :X3:
 

lsheed_cn

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I apparently get electricity from neither. I've tried contacting the provider my prepaid goes through but they haven't responded to me.
Doubt it, legally the only (monopoly) entities in South Africa allowed to sell electricity onward are Eskom, and Municipalities.

So whatever rates they have set will apply.

If you tell us your location (suburb), we can tell you what the rates are.
 

Moto Guzzi

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Just called them - it was this. The rates bills go to my wife's email so I wasn't aware.
Apparently, when the amount owed on rates reaches an arbitrary number, they add a portion of it to your prepaid bill.
They don't inform you and it doesn't show on the rates statement.
According to the woman at the call centre, there's no way to check that an amount has been added, or what the amount is. Even she had to add the statement amount to the "prepaid" amount to give me my total owed.
What a useless, stupid, annoying system.

Anyway, thanks for the help all, and hopefully this info will help someone else in future.
Surely undocumented "paper trail" of any transactions can not be administratively correct. This looks to me like something that MUST be fixed because it can lead to serious difficulty unraffeling problems should other problems arise and it will over time. Take this to your counciller for furtherattenttion, they probably paid millions for this administration with your taxpayers money.
 

DrJohnZoidberg

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Doubt it, legally the only (monopoly) entities in South Africa allowed to sell electricity onward are Eskom, and Municipalities.

So whatever rates they have set will apply.

If you tell us your location (suburb), we can tell you what the rates are.
Got a response from the prepaid supplier:

Your tariff at [My Complex Name Here] is determined by the body corporate of the complex. It is currently on R2.5227 excluding VAT, and went up on 1 April, by Eskom’s 13.8% tariff hike.
This just seems wrong for them to be charging so much. Going to contact them about why the price is so damn high.
 

isie

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Got a response from the prepaid supplier:



This just seems wrong for them to be charging so much. Going to contact them about why the price is so damn high.
Unfortunately for a complex that sounds about right - the complex has one meter at the council so automatically everyone is on the highest rate - not fair to all users especially if you a low user - but its the only way.
Its a mission to get on to the municipality reseller agreement , I tried it twice at 2 complexes i lived at - and speaking to the managing agent the other day (same guy both complexes) they still haven't gotten anywhere. :(
 
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lsheed_cn

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Got a response from the prepaid supplier:



This just seems wrong for them to be charging so much. Going to contact them about why the price is so damn high.
Doesn't sound wrong, it sounds illegal, as they're presumably charging you the highest rate for the block totals electricity. The municipality is not supposed to bill like that.

Need more details - where do you live (suburb)?


@richjdavies - sounds like something you should look at
 

DrJohnZoidberg

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Doesn't sound wrong, it sounds illegal, as they're presumably charging you the highest rate for the block totals electricity. The municipality is not supposed to bill like that.

Need more details - where do you live (suburb)?


@richjdavies - sounds like something you should look at
I've contacted the body corporate, will see what they say.

This is in Table View.
 

lsheed_cn

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I've contacted the body corporate, will see what they say.

This is in Table View.

Ah, the Boerewors Belt.
(My brother now lives that side, I shouldn't complain ha!)

You should be under CoCT then. Check with them if you are indeed a customer. Your monthly BC reports should actually state that though.

If not, contact. 0860 103 089. / electricty@capetown.gov.za (suggest call, they don't like replying to email).

If you are indeed under Eskom, then the below will not apply.


CoCT Electricity rates are listed here -

Your tariff at [My Complex Name Here] is determined by the body corporate of the complex. It is currently on R2.5227 excluding VAT, and went up on 1 April, by Eskom’s 13.8% tariff hike.
This sounds blatantly illegal to be honest, as resellers are NOT allowed to add extra fee's. This has gone to court a number of times, and been upheld.
See the thread here - https://mybroadband.co.za/forum/threads/judgment-electricity-service-charges-resellers-mark-ups-are-illegal.764418/

Assuming you are a CoCT customer, you should either be under domestic or home user (depending on the value of your unit)

Domestic: ( if your dwelling rates valuation is < 1million randela's)
Block 1:
 0 - 600 kWh per calendar month (199.13 c/kWh plus VAT) = 229.00 c/kWh.o Block 2:
 Above 600 kWh per calendar month (242.14 c/kWh plus VAT) = 278.46 c/kWh.

Home: ( if your dwelling rates valuation is > 1million randela's)

Also subject to an additional supply fee (R142.02 plus VAT) = R163.32 per month in addition to the below;
Block 1:
 0 – 600 kWh per calendar month (175.46 c/kWh plus VAT) = 201.78 c/kWho Block 2:
 Above 600 kWh per calendar month (242.14 c/kWh plus VAT) = 278.46 c/kWh.

Tariff Q&A's here -

If you are under Eskom, rates are here -

An electricity tariff for residential bulk supplies to sectional title developments* only, applicable to non-local authority supplies only with the following charges:
Ÿ ac/kWhenergychargesappliedtoallenergyconsumed,and
Ÿ aR/kVAnetworkcapacitychargebasedontheNMDorifmeasuredthemaximumdemandofthesupply;
* Sectional title developments also have a choice of other applicable tariffs such as Homepower Standard, Miniflex and Nightsave Urban Small.

(R2.02,07/ KWhr, which is still different to your charge.)




@richjdavies - comments?
 

DrJohnZoidberg

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I'm in contact with one of the trustees and body corporate now, they say they have nothing to do with setting the rates and it's all on the provider (PowerMeasurement in this case). Have contacted the provider again for clarification and have forwarded the body corporate the Nersa guidelines. Will see where this rabbit hole goes :D
 

StrontiumDog

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Regarding the 'additional supply fee (R142.02 plus VAT) = R163.32', is this charged via one's rates statement or only on the invoice when one buys electricity? I don't see it this anywhere on my statement / invoice?

705029

705021
 

K3NS31

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Regarding the 'additional supply fee (R142.02 plus VAT) = R163.32', is this charged via one's rates statement or only on the invoice when one buys electricity? I don't see it this anywhere on my statement / invoice?
Was on my rates statement.
 

isie

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I'm in contact with one of the trustees and body corporate now, they say they have nothing to do with setting the rates and it's all on the provider (PowerMeasurement in this case). Have contacted the provider again for clarification and have forwarded the body corporate the Nersa guidelines. Will see where this rabbit hole goes :D
Logically the money goes back into the complex so the BC must have set it - or at least approved it.
The complex cant run at a loss nor a profit so can only charge whatever they are paying.
 

lsheed_cn

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I'm in contact with one of the trustees and body corporate now, they say they have nothing to do with setting the rates and it's all on the provider (PowerMeasurement in this case). Have contacted the provider again for clarification and have forwarded the body corporate the Nersa guidelines. Will see where this rabbit hole goes :D
This is your next step - (click link below and do the things noted)

#44


Also contact the body corporate again, and let them know that reseller markups have been illegal for a while now, and you are entitled to refunds for all the overpaid funds (all the tenants). Good luck!

Suggest contact the trustee's again and have them call a meeting to discuss with all the tenants too.
 
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DrJohnZoidberg

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Logically the money goes back into the complex so the BC must have set it - or at least approved it.
The complex cant run at a loss nor a profit so can only charge whatever they are paying.
Yep. Have got a bit further today, the power reseller responded with the contract the body corp signed back in 2013 (then at at fixed rate of R1.76 per KWh) and it has since just been climbing with subsequent Eskom tariff hikes.

The reseller also proposed we "revisit" the tariff structure to offer a better deal. I have stopped there and passed on this info to the body corp along with the Nersa guidelines stating no reseller should be charging more than the local tariff. I will hopefully hear something tomorrow to see what the body corporate will decide to do.
 

richjdavies

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There are plenty of cowboys in this line of business! So I'm not surprised:
A. Your being charged what seems like an unapproved tariff
B. They will move quickly to resolve it as they know they are in the wrong and don't want to lose this cash cow.
Some others have said "the BC makes the money", but that's not always the case, often the BC signs over metering to a company who then makes a handy margin! Sometimes they even buy the meters for them :?

Step 1: Determine who WOULD be your supplier.
The Northern parts of CPT are very strange when it comes to Eskom or CoCT. One side of a street can be Eskom, the other COCT. Here's the map
Find your complex and whatever it says there is what tariff book you should be paying.

Step 2: Use the tariff book links (as @lsheed_cn has given - or just Google "[Municipality] electricity tariff" to decide what tariff you should be on.
Either Domestic, Home or Lifeline for CoCT
HomePower or Homelight for Eskom

Step 3: formally request back dated since you moved in for the over charge...

Step 4:?
Step 5: Profit ;)
(For all the ex-slashdotters out there)

Ps DM me if you want me to run some.numbers or propose a better and legal metering solution
 
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lsheed_cn

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There are plenty of cowboys in this line of business! So I'm not surprised:
[cut]
Step 4:?
Step 5: Profit ;)
(For all the ex-slashdotters out there)

Ps DM me if you want me to run some.numbers or propose a better and legal metering solution
[cut]
The reseller also proposed we "revisit" the tariff structure to offer a better deal. I have stopped there and passed on this info to the body corp along with the Nersa guidelines stating no reseller should be charging more than the local tariff. I will hopefully hear something tomorrow to see what the body corporate will decide to do.
@richjdavies - You finally made it to the thread! lots of me mentioning @richjdavies in here :)

@DrJohnZoidberg I can recommend talking with Rich..

You can send the virtual bottle of Bell's over to thank me later once you get your not insubstantial refunds, or at least actual electricity costs vs rapey ones ;)
 
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