Shopping around for a new energy deal

Find out how you can get a better deal and keep more money in your pocket rather than it going to your energy retailer's bottom line
 
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01.Save money on your energy bill

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Are you paying too much for your energy? If you haven't reviewed your energy plan recently, chances are you're paying too much.

With winter coming, check out our guide on how to keep your home warm and cosy and find out about the big energy guzzlers around your home.

This article takes a looks at:

For more information about Saving energy, see Power and energy.

Can you change your electricity retailer?

If you live in:

  • NSW – Yes
  • QLD – Yes
  • VIC - Yes
  • SA – Yes
  • ACT – Yes
  • TAS – no  (Aurora Energy is your retailer)
  • NT – no (Power and Water Corporation is your retailer)
  • WA – this depends on where you live. If your distributor is not Western Power (i.e. you do not live in the SWIS area), you are free to choose your retailer. However, the Office of Energy WA reports that there may be no alternative to Horizon Power at this point. 

What kind of plan are you on now?

Before you look at the other options available, you need to check what you are currently paying and if there are any fees associated with changing your plan or retailer. If you don’t have any past bills at hand or the information isn’t on these, call your current retailer to find out the answers. 

While you are looking at your old bills, take a note of how many kWh you use each quarter. This will be helpful for you to compare offers. If possible, dig up your bills for the past year as you may use more during winter or summer.

How are you currently charged under your current plan?

You will need to know how you are currently charged to see if there is a better deal available. This will be either:

  • a single flat rate at all times 
  • different prices, based on the time of use; or
  • a lower price at night for heating hot water for example with a single flat rate for everything else. (This is an off-peak rate that is linked to a specific appliance that only works at off peak times and may be referred to as a ‘controlled load’ tariff on your bill.)

You will be charged in one of these ways regardless of what type of meter you have (a smart ‘time-of-use’ meter or an old type ‘accumulation’ meter).

Tips: 
  • If you have an old electric storage hot water system, it is worthwhile considering all your alternative hot water system options now before it goes. Water heating can account for a quarter of typical household energy use. You may find a system that saves energy and money and is kinder to the environment.
  • If you have a pool pump or under-floor heating, investigate whether you can get it linked to a ‘controlled load’ tariff and the level of potential savings.  
  • If you are on a time-of-use plan, when purchasing your next dishwasher or washing machine consider buying one with a delayed start option.

 
 

 

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