Direct Energy — protection plan rip off
I signed up for a heating protection plan in 2009 and was paying 20.99 per month. In one service call I was told by a sales representative from Direct Energy that there is a more comprehensive plan (Total home protection plan) that covers air conditioning and plumbing, etc. for additional 9 dollars. The sales person explained that I will be receiving the same benefits and more and there is no need to sign for a new contract. That was in February, so I said go for it..
To my surprise, when I saw my next bill, I was billed for 20.99 and 29.99 together so I called Direct Energy customer service and they acknowledge the problem and told me that they will be crediting the amount to my account and will be reflected in the next bill..
Next bill came with a charge of 20.99, 29.99 and a number of charges with a credit that amount to additional $40 charge. After a long and unpleasant call to Direct Energy, I was told that in order to switch to the new “Total home protection plan” they have to cancel the first plan “heating protection plan” and then add the new plan. Something that is completely new to me especially I called a month ago to inform them of the charge. Also they told me that I missed on the chance to cancel the plan (two months) which is a complete trickery especially I called a month earlier regarding the problem. Some of the things I heard from the executive support (supposedly the highest ranking support) indicates to me the following:
• Direct Energy do not care about customers satisfaction at all
• Direct Energy customer support is very inflexible even if the customer is obviously screwed by them. They would not make any adjustment to the additional charges taken from me.
• The cancellation, change, and renewal policies are very tricky and Direct Energy takes full advantage of these confusing policies.
• Sales people do not give you the complete picture and charges when they sign you up to any upgrade. They basically want to complete the sale and get their commission.
Overall satisfaction with Direct Energy is very poor. I recommend that you be careful if you decide to go with Direct Energy and don’t change your plan in the middle. Of course I recommend that you don’t even go with Direct Energy to start with.