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Direct debit could save £200 a year

The average household can save £208 a year by paying all their household bills by direct debit, claims Bacs.

The body, which operates the banking industry’s direct debit system, says 85 per cent of people prefer to pay by direct debit.

Its research is part of a campaign to raise awareness of direct debit. Bacs has created a cartoon family to show how direct debit is used by different generations, including financially savvy dad Terry, gran Rose and aunt Kim, who is a single mother living on benefits.

Managing director Michael Chambers says: “Our money saving calculation of £208 is a great way to emphasise the discounts available on many household bills. Direct debit saves time, helps spread the cost and, most important, is protected by the direct debit guarantee.”

However, the drive by a number of utility companies to penalise customers who do not pay by direct debit led to Ofcom launching an investigation last month.

Labour MP David Hamilton tabled an early day motion against companies levying penalty charges on customers who pay by cheque, which was signed by 117 cross-party MPs.

Hamilton says: “These charges hit the most vulnerable members of society who do not have access to a bank account.”

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