Three Tips for Finding a Better Energy Deal, Amid Further Price HikesAug 08, 2023
By Sophie Ryan, iSelect Spokesperson
(This is a sponsored post by iSelect )
We’ve unfortunately become all too familiar with price hikes of late. Whether it’s your interest rate, your rent, or your weekly grocery shop, no doubt you’re feeling some kind of financial pinch.
So, if you were recently notified by your electricity provider of a rate increase, it might not have come as much of a surprise. Perhaps you even deleted the email or threw out the letter, shrugging it off as just another cost-of-living increase… but did you check to see how much your rate could be going up?
Well depending on your energy provider, plan and where you live, major retailers have either already increased average rates for residential customers on variable electricity market contracts or will soon. Here’s the real clincher… it could, on average, add as much as $565 annually to a household bill! While variable contracts may provide lower rates (depending on your contract), it does mean the rate you are charged as part of the plan can change from time to time!
An increase of this size is the last thing many of us need right now, that’s for sure. If you’re doing it tough, here are three tips for finding a better energy deal.
1. Default or Market?
The Default Market Offer (or the Victorian Default Offer) is the maximum price a retailer can charge a customer on a standing offer for electricity if they live in New South Wales, South East Queensland, Victoria or South Australia. Are you on a default or market offer? Don’t know? It’s time to find out as the default offer may not necessarily be the best value option for your household.
Take the time to compare both the default and available market offers. Why? Because energy prices may be higher across the board, but we’re still seeing price differences between plans and providers. Even if it’s a small difference, it could really add up over time.
2. Consider Solar
If you don’t already have solar, consider installing panels on your rooftop to convert energy from the sun into electricity. It could save you money! Depending on where you live, there’s also a range of government rebates and incentives on offer to set up a system.
When it comes to solar plans and providers, you may have heard of a ‘feed-in tariff’. This is a payment (which comes as a reduction to your electricity bill) for selling excess electricity generated by your solar power system back to the grid.
Some providers may offer higher feed-in tariffs than others, but it’s important to choose a plan that suits your circumstances. It can be confusing, but with the help of a comparison service, such as iSelect*, it doesn’t have to be!
3. Don't Set and Forget
Burying your head in the sand over power prices is not a good idea! Customers who stay with the same provider could end up paying a ‘loyalty tax’ because some energy retailers may increase rates for existing customers above the rates available to new customers.
iSelect General Manager – Utilities & Credit Cards, Julia Paszka, said now could be the perfect time to compare your current energy plan and provider against a range of others.
“Energy can be confusing, but iSelect can help you understand recent and upcoming changes in energy prices and try to find you a deal that better suits your needs and budget from our range of plans and providers,” Julia said.
“Grabbing a copy of your latest bill and taking the time to compare your current energy deal could pay off, especially when recent research highlighted the significant savings that could be made by switching.”
i-Link Research, commissioned by iSelect, found that of the Aussies surveyed who switched energy providers and/or plans in the last two years, more than half (58 per cent) estimate to be saving more than $100 a year, while more than a third (34 per cent) estimate to be saving over $200 a year.
That’s some serious cash that could well and truly be better spent elsewhere!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sophie Ryan is an experienced journalist and spokesperson for comparison service, iSelect. She’s passionate about helping Australians to save time, effort and money. She holds a Bachelor of Journalism from the University of the Sunshine Coast and provides advice on how Aussies can save on their household bills.