Choosing an electricity retail provider for your house (or business) can be complicated and confusing. The retailers offer "plans" that determine what:
In Gloucester you can buy electricity from 27 different licensed providers; companies that retail the electricity that they buy from the generation companies (e.g. power stations/solar farm/wind farm). To give you even more choice, each of these retailers offer a range of plans and variations within these plans. In fact the 27 providers in Gloucester are currently offering 123 different plans.
The electricity is distributed from the "power station" to your house via a "poles and wires" grid system. In Gloucester this is operated by Essential Energy. Essential Energy does not sell electricity but charges your chosen provider to maintain the grid and this cost is dot point 2 above - the service charge.
If there is an electrical problem with:
Generally the system works smoothly. You chose a retailer, a plan and pay the bill. However the amount your retailer can charge you for electricity can vary from year to year.
Choosing a retailer and an appropriate plan for you is very important and affects the amount you will pay. To assist you in choosing a plan, the Government has set up the Australian Energy Regulator (AER). The AER requires that all retailers provide all their customers, with the same information, set out in the same Standard format in what is called a "Residential Electricity Plan" (REP) document.
In the REP retailers must provide the following information:
Using the REPs you can compare one retailer with another and one plan with another, and make an informed choice about which retail plan is best for you. To help you do this the AER has set up "Energy Made Easy". This is an energy price comparison service for households and small businesses in New South Wales, and other states.
You can access this through a free website: https://www.energymadeeasy.gov.au/. This will enable you to compare one retailer with another for your energy usage. Hence you can make a more informed decision about which plan is best for you this year.
As this website is operated by the AER and not by the energy companies, the information is accurate and independent. It aims to help residential and small business customers make more informed decisions about the cost of their electricity.
It's a very difficult area to understand hence the government has made it very effort to make it clearer. If you would like to talk to someone about it, contact Energise Gloucester on 0438 316 644.
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