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What’s the best electricity price in Australia?
Like many Australians, you may be wondering how you can be sure you’re not paying too much on your electricity bills. Here's HOOD.
If you’re anything like many other Australians, you may be wondering what’s going on with electricity prices and how you can be sure you’re not paying more than you need to on your electricity bills.
Well, stop wondering!
In this blog, we take a look at some of the single rate offers available in July 2020 and give you an idea of the range of offers in each state so that you know what is a good rate and how do you go about getting yourself on one.
What’s a good price to pay for electricity in Australia?
This is one of our most frequently asked questions – and for good reason! After conducting a survey of residential electricity usage rates for single rate plans available in July 2020, we discovered a lot of variation across the board. Our survey looked at single rate plans, as they’re the simplest to understand and compare and are usually a good choice if you’re home a lot on weekdays or week evenings or use your appliances more during the week than weekends. In some situations, a different plan such as time of use or controlled load may be a better choice.
We included both market offers and standing or default offers and the results are shown in the table below. In many cases, the highest rates were with standing or default offers. If you’re on one of these plans you could potentially save a lot by switching to a market offer. Some market offers were also quite high so it’s worth your while to shop around.
Approximate range of electricity rates for single-rate residential plans
As of October 2020*
|Usage Rate c/kWh
(incl. discounts and GST)
|South East QLD||15.5||27.4|
Note: Rates are for offers available in July 2020 and have been rounded to one decimal place. Includes both conditional and unconditional discounts but excludes plans requiring a membership. Also excludes government concessions – concession card holders may be eligible for further discounts. Energy offers change frequently.
If you live in Victoria or NSW, around 19-23 c/kWh is a good price to pay for electricity in most areas. In these states, prices vary across regions so, depending on where you live, you might expect to pay a little higher. For example, we found the lowest prices in the outer northern and eastern suburbs and eastern parts of Victoria were about 3.5 cents/kWh higher than the lowest prices in Melbourne’s city and inner suburbs.Note: Rates are for offers available in October 2020 and have been rounded to one decimal place. Includes both conditional and unconditional discounts but excludes plans requiring a membership. Energy offers change frequently.
In Canberra there’s only a handful of retailers to choose from and little price variation. Expect to pay around 20 c/kWh for your electricity in the ACT.
In South Australia, where prices are among the highest in the country, there’s also the most variation. Some retailers are charging as high as 40 cents/kWh while a few are currently offering rates under 30 cents/kWh. If you live in South Australia and you’re paying in the low 30’s or less, then you’re getting a good deal.
In South East Queensland, around 20 c/kWh is a good price to pay although a couple of newer retailers are offering very low rates under 16 c/kWh.
Prices are heavily regulated in Tasmania and regional Queensland resulting in less competition and therefore less price variation. Each state has a small choice of retailers, some offering small discounts for direct debit or paying your bill on time. In Tasmania expect to pay around 26 cents/kWh and regional Queensland around 21-23 cents/kWh.
In Western Australia and the Northern Territory prices are set by state governments. You can expect to pay a little less than 29 cents/kWh in Western Australia and a little over 26 cents/kWh in the Northern Territory.
How much are you paying for electricity?
It goes without saying that the amount you pay on your electricity bill depends on how much electricity your household uses. Air conditioners, large appliances and even swimming pools might be one reason you’re paying a higher electricity bill than your neighbour – but there may be another culprit.
While it’s possible to request an energy fact sheet from your retailer (or find one on their website), the easiest way to find out the price you’re paying for electricity is to take a look at your bill. Look for the section that details usage and supply charges.
It’s important to note that in addition to usage charges, electricity bills also include daily supply charges, which are fixed charges just for being connected to the service. Even though we found these can vary by up to 30 cents per day, daily supply charges usually have the lesser impact on your overall bill.
How can I find better electricity rates?
The amount you could potentially save depends on where you live. For example, consider the range of rates available in SA. If you’re on the most expensive plan, you could be paying a whopping 14 cents/kWh more than someone on a cheaper plan. That adds up to hundreds of dollars per year – money you could save by finding a better rate.
Renters and first homebuyers, we haven’t forgotten you. If you’re about to make the move out of home and into your own place, then you’ll want to get off to a good start with your electricity bill.
If you’re moving house or short on notice, our friendly team at HOOD can help with a chat over Messenger or one quick phone call.