Solar Hot Water Collectors – Reduce Electricity Bills

I am sure that we would all like to have piping hot water in our home throughout the summer months without having to use our central heating boilers. This can now be done using Solar Hot Water Collectors that use the radiation from the sun to heat water. Solar panels that use photovoltaic cells are already well established. Solar panels that heat the water in your home come in two different types, evacuated tubes and flat plate collectors.
Both are fitted to the roof of your home and collect energy from the sun to heat water which is stored in your hot water cylinder.

Lets look at the factors to consider when deciding to install a Solar Water Heater system in your home.

• Is your home suitable?

• Do you have a sunny place to put your Solar Collectors?

• Do you have space on your roof?

• Do you have space for a larger water cylinder?

• Is your current boiler compatible with Solar Water heating?

• Do you need planning permission?

• How much will it cost?

• Savings – up to a third on your electricity bill.

Firstly most homes are suitable for installation of a solar hot water system, unless your boiler is a combination boiler and you do not have a water cylinder. The age of your boiler does not matter, I installed a system despite having a boiler that was more than 30 years old. (I have since updated to a modern condensing boiler). It is important that you have good exposure to the sun at the location of your home(not obstructed by tall buildings of trees). If you have a pitched roof and your home faces South, then one collector panel on the South facing slope will be sufficient. If your home faces East/West then you will need a collector on each slope.

As part of the solar water heater system a larger water cylinder is installed, and you will need to ensure that this will fit in the space allocated for your hot water cylinder. In the UK at least Planning permission is not required for the system. The cost if you use one of the Solar installer companies will be thousands of dollars, in the UK from £3,000 to £5,000. Prices have come down a bit as I paid over £6,000 almost four years ago. You do not have to pay these prices today!

The great advantage of the system is that you will save a thirds on your electricity bill, and you will have hot water all day long when the sun shines. When it is dull you can use your immersion heater in your cylinder as a backup to heat the water. I can honestly say that it was one of the best investments I have made in my home.

Today you can build your own system at home for less than $100.

How to Scupper a Debt Collector

One of the most desperately difficult things to deal with for most people is a Debt Collector and most people do not know where to turn to for help. It just isn’t something that we are taught to handle when we are growing up, mainly because nobody plans to be in that situation.

Debt Collectors will lie to you and use any form of underhand tactics that they can to bully you into paying. Dubbed “Merchants of Misery” in the news papers, Debt Collection is one of the UK’s fastest growing industries, with agencies pursuing over 20 million cases a year. Many have been know to resort to underhand and violet tactics to achieve their ends.

“More than eight million Britons are in serious debt – a quarter of whom are struggling to make their repayments. Major lenders are taking legal action against people’s assets, according to evidence from the Credit Management Research Centre at the University of Leeds, which warns that people’s homes are also at risk.” according to the Independent on Sunday.

The Financial Services Authority (FSA) warned of a “growing number of consumers experiencing debt-repayment problems” and the number of repossessions and bankruptcies have risen massively in recent months, thus fuelling the growth in Debt Collection Agencies.

There are many reasons why someone may be unable to pay a debt, especially in the turbulent economic times we are in. It could be that they have been a very good credit risk for many years, but suddenly suffered a catastrophic change in circumstances. Unfortunately the Debt Collectors are not paid to care about why they are chasing and harassing you.

Some of the reasons for falling behind with payments include:

* Being laid off from work

* Injury that results in reduction in income

* Illness

* Failing to provide a forwarding address

* Mistaken identity

The biggest problem most people face is that they do not know their rights and the limitations of the debt collector. It is important to know when a debt collector is lying and what they can and cannot do.

Threats a Debt Collector may make:

1. We will visit your home.

Under Common Law you have the right to refuse access to your property to anyone that does not possess a warrant or court order.

You must write to the Debt Collector and specifically inform them that they are not permitted to visit your property without an appointment and that you have no intension of making an appointment with them. Further state that if they seek to visit your property despite your refusal to make an appointment they will be committing a ‘Tort of Trespass’. Also that you will deem the visit as an act of harassment as defined by the Protection From Harassment Act 1997.

2. We will report you to the Credit Reference Agencies.

Debt Collectors cannot report you to the credit reference agencies, only a Bank with whom you have a valid Credit Agreement may lodge a report against you.

Threats of any kind that cause you distress are harassment, nobody has any right to make threats against you with the aim of extorting money from you.

3. We will seize your belongings.

No one can seize your belongings other than a licensed Bailiff with a Warrant.

Underhand Tactics:

1. Sending a letter your neighbours to put pressure on you to pay.

This does happen and is completely against the rules laid down by Trading Standards. If this should happen inform your local Trading Standards Officer and The Office of Fair trading.

2. Telephoning repeatedly 7 days a week up to 5 times a day from early in the morning until late in the evening.

This is the most common form of harassment that the debt collector uses to put pressure on you.

Write to the debt collector and state that third parties have no authority in this matter and that you are dealing with the Bank/Company/Council (creditor) directly. Inform them that you regard their persistent telephone calls as distressing and harassment as defined by the Protection from Harassment Act 1997. Inform them that you will report them to the local Trading Standards Officer, The Office of Fair Trading and OFCOM if they do not desist. Remind them that this could result in their license being revoked (which would effectively put them out of business).

3. Sending letters that appear to have come from the court.

This is a common tactic and one that is usually easy to spot. They would be breaking the law if they were to send forms that are identical to official court documents, so you will usually see that they say “Intent to Commence Proceedings” or “Notice of Intent”. Treat these letters much like any other.

The thing to remember is that a Debt Collector has very little in the way of rights to take any physical action against you. However, this is not true of Bailiffs who have increasingly been given wider powers to use force to seize goods or extort money.

There have been a number of cases where Bailiffs have used physical violence to enter a persons home with the intent to extort money and if the innocent member of the public tries to defend them self, or calls the police the victim could be arrested for assault or a breach of the peace.

If you are being harassed by debt collectors, seek professional help. The Citizens Advice Bureau are a really good first point of contact. The best option is to seek help long before the case is passed to a debt collector, so that you have the backup you need to prevent the situation getting out of hand. Act early to get help and the debt collector need never be a problem.

Avoid Bill Collectors – How to Avoid Bill Collectors and Not Get Into Any Trouble

Is It Legal To Avoid Bill Collectors – Inquiring Minds Want to Know? – In this context, to avoid means: to keep away from; keep clear of; shun: to avoid a person and/or company. The reason to avoid bill collectors is to avoid the harassing phone calls, dunning collection letters and other tactics they use to make your life miserable. This session IS NOT about shrugging your obligations; it is about regaining your peace of mind and peace at home. Nothing is worse than being filled with anxiety in your own home no thanks to bill collectors.

The question was asked, “Is it legal to avoid bill collectors?” The answer is, “Yes!” Why wouldn’t it be? Can a person get into trouble for avoiding bill collectors? The answer is NO! They ARE NOT a government entity and they have NO Federal, State or Local powers. There are two things debt collections companies can do. (a) They can put negative glitches on your credit reports, but those are EASILY removed. (b) They can sue you. However, the chances of them suing you are slim. But if they do, you can fight back and make it way too costly for them to proceed.

The objective here is to avoid bill collectors, not avoid paying your bills. You are not bound by law to deal with or interact with any bill collector.

Top 7 Reasons To Avoid Bill Collectors

1. You can’t stand to be harassed by bill collectors

2. They are causing you anxiety

3. They’ve turned your normally peaceful abode into a house filled with worry

4. You’ve decided to solve your debt problem without their help

5. You simply don’t have the money and won’t have it in the foreseeable future

6. Their badgering has caused a rift in marriage

7. They’ve caused you or your spouse sleepless nights

To Avoid Bill Collectors Take Any of These Steps

(a). Send an Official Cease and Desist Letter to the creditor at the very the first contact.

(b). Use an answering machine to screen all of your calls. All most all debt collectors use automated dialing software these days. Once the software detects an answering machine it hangs up.

(c). Change your home phone to a unlisted number and do not give the new number to any business or put it on any type of application; only provide your new number to family and friends

(d). Get a Post Office Box from the United States Post Office and permanently forward all of your mail to your new address. Notify all of your utility companies of your mailing address.

(e). If you don’t need a regular home number, cancel that service and switch to a cellular phone. If you need a regular home number, just turn your ringer off and let them keep calling.

(f). Do not respond to or sign for any registered, signature confirmation or certified mail

(g). Don’t apply for anything that will prompt a credit check

(h). This moment forward, pay all of your bills on time.

As you take these steps, bill collectors will be unable to reach you. The most important thing to remember is this: get your debt problem in check; that way debt collectors will have no reason to attempt to contact you.