Thursday, September 19, 2013


We are big electricity users - I wont deny it.  We guzzle that stuff like it is going out of fashion.  OK, we are not that bad, but every time I get an electricity bill it takes my breath away.

There was one good thing about living in the rental house and it being smaller than a shoe box - small electricity bills.  I think our first one was under $400.00 for the quarter.  That caused me to nearly run down the street yahooing.

I expect with the new house that our electricity bill will be about $1,000 a quarter. If it comes in under that, it will require a party. If it comes in after that, I think I will die of shock.

This week I have been ringing around trying to get energy prices.  My first call was to Energy Australia to find out my rates. Their computers were down and they couldnt help me.  Next try was to find out what would work for me.   The problem with iselect, you cannot do it over the internet and someone calls you back.   Someone called me back even though I didn't want them to and they offered me Momentum Energy.  I told them I would think about it and they have been hassling me repeatedly for the last two days.

Today  I went back to Energy Australia and asked what rates I was on.   Firstly I was told that I had a 'Standard all hours meter' and I only had one rate which was a peak rate of 27.39c/kw - 31.32c/kw.  I was shocked thinking we had one of the new 'smart meters' that did time billing, where you have a peak, shoulder and off peak rate.

A call to Rawson's electrician told me that we do have that smart meter and they gave me all necessary details and told me to speak to Ausgrid. I rung Ausgrid and my goodness are they helpful and it was worked out that we do have a smart meter, but when new connections are done they are automatically put on the 'standard all hours meter'

I was then put through to an Energy Australia person who said that I could opt to have my meter changed over to 'time of use' billing, but she needed to explain the rates first.  I was all into changing over to the 'time of use billing'until she gave me the rates.

Peak rate is 52.54c/kw  Peak time is from 2pm to 8pm
Shoulder is 21.856c/kw.  Shoulder time is from 8pm to 10pm and then 7am to 2pm and from 7am to 10pm on weekends and public holidays
Off Peak is 13.167c/kw Off Peak time is 10om until 7am

The daily fee you pay is 87.175c compared to the 78.10 cents with the other meter.

With those rates I nearly fell off my chair.  I think I am going to have to turn my kids into slaves and get them riding exercise bikes to make electricity - OK I am joking with that one.

The Energy Australia lady then advised that their rates did not includes discounts - Oooohhh I like the word discount.

With the one rate plan if I agreed to stay with Energy Australia for 2 years I would receive a discount of 12%. If I went with the time of use plan I would get a 15% discount if I agreed to a contract for the same period, basically bringing the rates down to the following

Peak for All Time Billing 24.10 - 27.56c/kw depending on how much I use.

For the Time of Use

Peak 44.659c/kw
Shoulder: 18.289c/kw
Off Peak: 11.19c/kw

Now my next thing is to work out how we use our electricity and when. I think that will determine what plan I am going to go for.

Have you looked at your electricity plans????


  1. I have a smart meter too, which I think works most of the time, except when I have to do a load after school and hang it out at night because my mornings are so hectic. I think I'll pull out a bill and compare my rates to yours!

  2. I am currently looking at installing Solar. I am waiting on Ausgrid to do a 'survey' or 'download' of our usage data which will give a 'baseload' figure of the when and how much electricity we use. Hopefully it will give us a better understanding of exactly when during the day power is being used.

    I would also consider installing a permanent meter reader similar to this

  3. Just checked. My rates are slightly higher - 2 or 3 cents per rates. I'll be on the phone tomorrow to fix that. :) I have a large 4 bed house and my bill is about $500-600 each quarter. But I have panels to offset that cost (by quite a bit) and don't have a pool or ducted AC, just splitty's for summer and gas for winter. I'm a bit of a budgeting nerd so appreciate your post on this!

  4. With energy prices that high in a country with a lot of sun, I would ertainly consider solar or other alternatives

  5. Hi Cathy, how do you get the smart meter installed? i spoke to Endeavor who are the distributers and they said they only do the normal meters. Thanks,