Your energy bills are about to be simpler and cheaper – here’s what’s changing

Posted: 5 April 2022 11:32 am
News
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Energy bills will soon tell you if you can get a better offer from your power company, as well as how to switch.

It's time to celebrate. The Australian Energy Regulator (AER) will amend the Better Bills Guideline by 2023 to make sure Aussie bill payers understand their energy bills better.

The proposed changes include 3 key elements:

  • From next year, your energy provider will have to state on your energy bill if you can get a better offer from them. This will be under the heading "Could you save on another plan?"
  • Your energy bills will have clear information on how you can switch, whether conditions apply and a reference to the AER's comparison website.
  • There will also be a summary of your plan so you know what you've signed up to, what benefits and discounts have been agreed to and when these might expire.

This will come as a relief to at least 21% of Australians who rank energy as 1 of their top 3 most stressful bills, according to Finder's Consumer Sentiment Tracker.

Here's a look at the initial design of the energy bill that you could see in your home from next year.

AER Energy bill details

Photo courtesy of the AER

Which states will adopt the new energy bills?

The rule change that the AER proposed will come into effect on 31 March 2023 in New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, the ACT and Tasmania.

Victoria is already ahead of the curve as of 2021. Energy providers in the state are obliged to tell customers at least thrice a year if they could save money by switching to a better offer.

We're absolutely stoked for these changes to take effect, but what gave the AER the push to take action?

AER chair Clare Savage said that the new requirements were a key part of the regulator's push to support consumers, especially those experiencing vulnerability.

"Over time, energy bills have become more complex and detailed," Savage said.

"Our purpose as a regulator is to make energy consumers better off now and in the future, and this new industry requirement for simpler energy bills goes to the heart of this."

How to save money on your energy bills in the meantime

So, there's still some time to go until the new changes come into place. However, there are a couple of actions you can take to bring down your energy bills.

Depending on which state you live in, you potentially save an average $126 a year by switch plans or providers, according to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).

Here's a breakdown of savings from across the country:

  • Brisbane: up to $126 a year
  • Canberra: up to $46 a year
  • Sydney: up to $88 a year
  • Melbourne: up to $181 a year
  • Adelaide: up to $118 a year

You can quickly compare energy plans via Energy Finder™ – our in-house database – to see if you're on the best deal available to you.

Alternatively, we also suggest calling your energy provider to find out if you're on the most competitive plan available through them. If not, ask them to switch you to a better plan.

There's more to be done than just switching and saving. Here are 6 easy ways to save on your energy bills that you might not already be doing.

Lower your household bills

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