Learn everything you need to know about how your account balance works, with info on charges, Direct Debits, and much more.
At OVO, we want everything to be as easy and accessible for our members as possible. And that includes understanding how your account balance works. Think of your energy account balance like a pot of money. Every month:
You put a set payment in
We take out the amount you owe (and send you the bill)
Some months, we might take less than the set payments you put in, because you didn’t use as much energy. This would result in you having a positive balance. Other months, we might take more from the pot, because you used more energy. This could lead to you having a negative balance.
We aim to get your balance to a healthy level by the end of winter (31 March), or the end of your contract if you're on a fixed plan.
Your account balance is made up of 4 main charges:
The cost of the amount of energy you’ve used, plus VAT – this is measured in pence per kilowatt hour (kWh)
The standing charges – this is a daily fixed amount that covers the cost of your connection to the grid, as well as general maintenance
The cost of any add-ons
Any extra charges
You can view your balance:
by logging into your account on our website or app
in your latest statement
Of course, it’s generally darker and colder in winter, and lighter and warmer in summer. So it stands to reason that your bills are usually higher in winter, when you want to keep your home cosy and comfortable.
Your Direct Debit payment goes out monthly on the date you choose.
Did you know you can manage your bills online via your online account, or by using the OVO app? This way you can quickly:
View and download bills
Send meter readings (although if you have a smart meter, this isn’t usually necessary)
Change your Direct Debit amount and payment day
We calculate and deduct your energy and standing charges from your account balance whenever you or your smart meter (if you have one) sends us a meter reading. These charges add up to the same amount as if we had calculated them on the same day every month – but it means you have the benefit of seeing exactly what you’re using each day and what your account balance is, without having to wait until the end of the month.
We still only take payment once a month from your bank account through your Direct Debit.
It’s easy to see recent charges to your balance. On the home screen, just select today’s balance to see your charges and payments timeline.
You can get a refund when:
Moving home – go to My OVO account and let us know your final meter readings, and your new address. If your account is in credit, we’ll refund it to you within 14 working days of your final statement.
Switching supplier – once your new energy supplier has sent us your final meter readings, we’ll send your final statement. You’ll get the refund straight into your account within 14 working days from the final statement.
Staying with OVO – you can ask for a refund if your balance is in credit with at least one month's Direct Debit payment amount.
To make things even easier to understand, here’s an example:
The Smith family pay £80 per month as a Direct Debit. Their account balance per month shows:
£70 of electricity and gas each month
A standing charge of 20p per day = £6 a month
VAT at 5% = £3.80
So the total per month is £79.80.
Making their yearly total £957.60
This means that by the end of their 12-month billing cycle, their account is on track to have a positive balance of £2.40.
Does that sound like a hefty bill to you? Or are you paying a lot more? Discover more about average UK energy bills, and why your bills might be too high. Then learn our top 14 ways to cut your electricity bills!
Your account balance works much the same as online banking. As you use gas and electricity, the balance will change. If you have a smart meter, you’ll see your gas and electricity use change regularly as you use it – and your balance will change accordingly.
And if you’ve a traditional meter, you’ll only be able to see your daily standing charges until you submit a reading. Once that’s happened, you’ll be able to see your gas and electricity use – and your balance will then change accordingly.
Don’t worry – this happens to thousands of people across the nation at some point. The best thing to do is let us know as soon as possible, so we can work out a payment plan. Read all about the help available if you’re having trouble with bills, in our guide.
We understand that learning about your account balance can sometimes be a little tricky – so if you need a hand, don’t hesitate to get in touch. There’s more help available in the OVO Forum. And if you don't find the answers you need, feel free to ask a question, and one of our forum users will be happy to help!
Can’t find an answer? Try asking our helpful OVO community.
If you have a gas leak, power cut , or Pay As You Go emergency, get emergency help.