What is Direct Debit?

Simple, convenient and safe, Direct Debit is an automated payment method that is preferred by over half of all UK bill payers. Everything you need to know about Direct Debit is explained here. You’ll not just discover how easy it is to set one up – you’ll be able to assess all the benefits that come along with it.

Simply, a Direct Debit is an instruction from you to your bank or building society. It authorises the organisation you want to pay to collect varying amounts from your account – but only if you’ve been given advanced notice of the amounts and dates of collection.

Once you have agreed those, the money is deducted automatically. If the organisation you are paying wants to change an amount or date of collection, they have to tell you about it first.

In a nutshell, Direct Debit is the simplest and most convenient way for you to pay regular and occasional bills.

The benefits of Direct Debit

It spreads the costs

Paying your StowAg bill by Direct Debit allows you to spread costs over a period that you have agreed us.

It's guaranteed

Direct Debit payments come with a guarantee, so you're automatically protected by three important safeguards:
• An immediate money back guarantee from your bank in the event of an error in the payment of your Direct Debit
• Advance notice if the date or amount changes
• The right to cancel at any time.

Read The Direct Debit Guarantee in full.

It gives you peace of mind

Direct Debit is one of the safest and most reassuring ways of paying your bill:
• Payments are made automatically, so bills are never forgotten, lost in the post or delayed by postal problems and there's no risk of late payment charges
• StowAg have had to pass a careful vetting process, and are closely monitored by the banking industry
• The Direct Debit Guarantee protects you and your money. It's offered by all banks and building societies that take part in the scheme.

It saves you time

Modern life is hectic – but Direct Debit helps. It takes away much of the hassle associated with paying bills and puts an end to queuing at the bank and filling out cheques. You’ll find it easier to stay on top of your bills, and you’ll know exactly how much money is going out each month. For businesses paying by Direct Debit also means reduced workload and paperwork for your finance department.

How to set up a Direct Debit

Changing to Direct Debit only takes four simple steps.

Step 1 - Contact StowAg accounts on 01451 833 187.
Get in touch and ask to set up a Direct Debit. We’ll arrange for you to complete a Direct Debit Instruction. This can be done by post, over the phone or online.

Step 2 - Complete the Direct Debit Instruction
You'll need to provide:
• Your name and address
• Name and address of your bank or building society
• Your bank or building society account number
• The branch sort code of your bank or building society
• The name(s) on the account.

We will update our payment records and forward the instruction onto your bank or building society. We will then collect the agreed amounts on the agreed dates.

Step 3 - Check the advance notice details
StowAg will give you advance notice of collection dates and amounts, whether you set up a Direct Debit by telephone, internet or using a paper form. Check these details are correct and contact them straight away if you want to query anything.

Step 4 - Relax
Apart from making sure you've enough money in your account when payment is due, there's nothing more you have to do. Just keep an eye on your bank statement to check that the Direct Debits are being made as agreed.

How to cancel a Direct Debit


You can cancel a Direct Debit at any time and the process is very straightforward.

Simply contact your bank or building society. If this is by phone or internet, written confirmation may be required. We also recommend you notify us, you could do this by sending a copy of the letter you send to your bank.

Your bank or building society will generally require at least a day's notice before the Direct Debit is due to be paid. Try not to leave it until the last minute or you run the risk of a payment being made. It is best to check how long your bank needs to do this.

Remember that cancelling the Direct Debit simply stops payments from going to StowAg. If you carry on receiving the goods or service then you will have to organise an alternative payment method.

The information you should provide in order to cancel a Direct Debit is:
• The name of the organisation you are paying
• Your bank or building society account number
• The name(s) on the account
• The branch sort code (see your cheque book)
• Your customer reference with the organisation (if known).

The more information you can give, the easier it will be for the bank or building society to action, so if you know the amount and payment date include this information too.

Money shouldn't be collected from your account after you have cancelled and under the Scheme rules, an organisation would have to obtain your authority to reinstate a cancelled Instruction.

Once you have cancelled a Direct Debit take care to check subsequent bank statements to ensure that your instruction has been followed. That way any error will be identified immediately and steps can be taken quickly to secure a refund.

If you would like to know anything more about Direct Debits please click here.