British Gas forced to pay customers £30m for cancelled HomeCare visits

British Gas in £30m of hot water as it’s forced to pay refunds for cancelled HomeCare boiler visits

British Gas Insurance Ltd, which trades under HomeCare, paid out £28.7 million in policy refunds for repeatedly cancelled boiler services.

More than seven million people each pay hundreds of pounds annually for HomeCare policies. 

But for the past year, the firm has been inundated with complaints about delayed engineer visits. HomeCare’s annual reports show it lost 400,000 policyholders last year.

British Gas paid out £28.7m in policy refunds over cancelled boiler services

A spokesman says: ‘It’s been a really hard period and we hope — like everyone else — that the worst is behind us.’

The basic cost of British Gas HomeCare starts at just over £200, with their zero excess policies ranging upwards of £450 per year.

The policies were designed to ensure that British Gas customers had access to quick support in case of an emergency, but some customers were reportedly waiting weeks for their scheduled engineers to complete boiler services and repairs.

British Gas have come under fire recently after reports of their smart meters failing to track a number of households energy usage.

The energy giant admitted that some smart meter customers were left unable to track their energy usage either via either the app or the website for over two months, in what the firm has called a ‘glitch’.

British Gas said that the tech error has meant millions of smart meter users hadn’t been able to monitor their energy since 16 February, but they have also reassured users that they were still receiving the correct meter readings.  

British Gas owner Centrica has since slammed administrators for ‘aggravating’ problems caused by the collapse of energy suppliers, demanding regulator Ofgem to intervene to speed up the ‘onboarding’ process for stranded customers.

It claims administrators had not only slowed the process of handing over customers’ details, but also taken unnecessary direct debit payments, leaving consumers furious.

Giving evidence to MPs last week, Centrica chief Chris O’Shea said: ‘The administrator of the failed company is not incentivised to do anything quickly. 

‘They would not give us any information on credit balances… [Customers] are several months into their journey with British Gas, and they are quite rightly deeply unhappy.’