Energy rebates and concessions in Australia
Energy rebates and concessions can help you save on your electricity and gas bills. Find out which ones you’re eligible for based on where you live.
Many households are entitled to reduced electricity and gas bills through federal or state government rebate and concession programs.
While these vary state-to-state, you might be eligible if you're a concession or seniors card holder, if you need to use energy-intensive medical equipment, or you're a low-income household that receives family tax benefits.
If you don't qualify for an energy rebate or concessions, there are still ways to save by taking advantage of energy discounts.
Head to your state for a full list of energy rebates and concessions available
How do energy rebates in Australia work?
An energy rebate is support from the government towards your electricity or gas bills. This is usually done via a flat payment, where your usage is not taken into consideration, although in some situations, you might get a percentage off your bills.
In Australia, energy rebates come from both the federal and state governments, so you might be eligible for multiple support packages.
An energy rebate can be applied in 2 ways:
- Every Australian household gets a rebate
- Those who are more vulnerable receive a discount on their bills
If the support is more targeted, usually those on pensions, senior health cards, low income households or those on family tax benefit A or B, will receive the rebate.
To be eligible for a rebate, you might need to have a valid pension or concession card.
The types of rebates available to you depend on the state you live in and whether or not you meet eligibility requirements.
Residents of New South Wales
If you live in New South Wales, you may be eligible for the following rebates or concessions:
- Family Energy Rebate. Discounts for those who receive the Family Tax Benefit.
- Low Income Household Rebate. Concessions for pensioners, seniors, veterans and families who are having trouble paying their bills.
- Life Support Rebate. Discounts for those using energy-intensive life support equipment.
- Medical Energy Rebate. Rebates for people who are medically unable to regulate their body temperature.
- NSW Gas Rebate. Rebates for eligible pensioners, veterans and low-income natural gas and LPG customers.
- Energy Accounts Payment Assistance (EAPA). Eligible customers can receive payment assistance of up to $400 per application for electricity and gas bills twice a year.
- Seniors Energy Rebate. This rebate is for independent self-funded retirees to help cover the cost of their electricity.
Residents of Victoria
Victorian residents may be eligible for the following rebates or concessions:
- Annual Electricity Concession. Electricity discounts for concession cardholders
- Life Support Concession. Rebates for those with energy-intensive life support equipment
- Medical Cooling Concession. Discounts for people who are medically unable to regulate their body temperature.
- Service to Property Charge Concession. Discounts for low energy use.
- Excess Electricity Concession. Concessions for high energy use.
- Controlled Load Electricity Concession. Discounts for separately-metered hot water or slab heating.
- Electricity Transfer Fee Waiver. Waiver of the electricity transfer fee when moving.
- Winter Gas Concession. Gas discounts for concession cardholders.
- Excess Gas Concession. Concessions for high gas use.
- Non-Mains Energy Concession. Rebate for on-supplied homes using LPG or natural gas for heating or cooking.
Residents of Queensland
The following rebates and concessions are available to Queensland residents.
- Queensland electricity and gas rebates. Concessions for pensioners, seniors and veterans.
- Medical Cooling and Heating Concession Scheme. Rebates for people who are medically unable to regulate their body temperature.
- Home Energy Emergency Assistance Scheme. One-off concession for those experiencing financial difficulty.
- Concessions for owners of multi-unit buildings or residential communities. Concessions for owners of units or residential communities with pensioners, seniors and veterans.
- Cost of living rebate. A one-off payment to help with rising cost of living.
Residents of South Australia
South Australian residents may be eligible for the following rebates or concessions:
- Energy Bill Concession. Electricity discounts for eligible concession cardholders.
- Medical Heating and Cooling Concession. Rebates for people who are medically unable to regulate their body temperature.
- Cost of Living Concession. Reduces the cost of basic utilities including water, gas, medical bills and electricity for those with an eligible pension or concession card.
- Residential Park Resident Concession. Concession for people living in residential or caravan parks who have an eligible concession card or receive an eligible Centrelink payment.
Residents of Tasmania
If you live in Tasmania, you may be eligible for the following rebates or concessions:
- Annual Electricity Concession. Electricity discounts for eligible concession cardholders.
- Heating Allowance. Discounts for eligible pensioners to help with heating costs.
- Life Support Concession. Rebates for those with energy-intensive life support equipment.
- Medical Cooling Concession. Rebates for people who are medically unable to regulate their body temperature.
Residents of Western Australia
If you live in Western Australia, you may be eligible for the following rebates or concessions:
- Energy Assistance Payment. A scheme designed to help vulnerable people handle their bills.
- Energy Concession Extension Scheme (ECES). Electricity discounts for eligible WA residents.
- Air Conditioning Rebate. This concession helps offset some of the costs associated with running an air conditioner.
- Dependent child rebate. A concession to help those with dependent children by reducing the amount owing on their electricity bills. It scales with the number of children.
Residents of Northern Territory
Northern Territory residents may be eligible for the following rebates or concessions:
- NT Concession Scheme. Electricity and water concession for eligible pension and concession cardholders.
- Energy Bill Relief Fund. Electricity bill relief for eligible households through the Energy Bill Relief Fund.
- Renewable power incentives. Households that install a small-scale renewable energy system may be able to receive a benefit towards the purchase cost.
Residents of the ACT
If you live in the Australian Capital Territory, you may be eligible for the following rebates or concessions:
- The Utilities Concession. Electricity, natural gas, water and sewerage discounts for eligible pension and concession cardholders.
- Energy Bill Relief Fund. Automatic financial relief to eligible households through the Energy Bill Relief Fund.
- Life Support Rebate. This rebate is designed to help people with life-threatening conditions cover the running costs of life assistance equipment or those that require constant heating or cooling to prevent their condition from getting worse.
Rebates for low income families
An energy rebate is a percentage or flat value refund on your energy bill. Rebates come with various eligibility requirements. Exactly which rebates are available will depend on where you live.
For example, to qualify for Victoria's Utility Relief Grant Scheme, you'll need:
- A Pensioner Concession Card, Health Care Card, Veterans' Affairs Gold Card or be able to show you're part of a low income household.
- Proof that you have no way of paying your utility bill without assistance.
- To meet one of these conditions:
- Someone in the household has experienced family violence.
- You have had a recent decrease in income.
- You have had high unexpected costs for essential items.
- The cost of shelter is more than 30% of your household income.
If you qualify, you'll receive the amount you owe when you apply, up to a maximum of $650 for each utility type in a two-year period.
- Did you know? A CPRC report shows up to 41% of residents are missing out on their energy concessions. Those in the ACT are missing out the most, with 41% of households not receiving their rebates. This is followed by 38% of South Australian consumers, 35% of NSW consumers and 29% of Queensland consumers.
What energy discounts are available to me?
In addition to rebates that are given from the government, energy providers themselves also offer discounts that can help you save on your bills.
Here's the most common discount types offered:
- Sign-up discount. When you sign up with some providers, they may offer you a discount that is applied as credit on your first bill or via instalments over a few months.
- Guaranteed discount. You'll find these on plans where you can get discounts on your usage and/or supply charges. They're usually part of a 'benefit period' and in most cases last 12 months.
- Conditional discounts. These are given if you meet certain conditions such as if you pay your bill on time or if you pay via direct debit.
- Bundling offers. If an energy company also offers services like mobile phone plans or home internet, having both with the same company can give you a discount.
- Refer a friend. If you know someone looking to change providers, giving them your details can also reward you with benefits like a discount on an upcoming bill or extra rewards points if the company is partnered with a rewards program such as Flybuys.
- Keep in mind. While everyone loves to feel like they are saving, you should never sign up to a plan purely on the discount that the provider is offering. On paper they may look great but your bills could get expensive if the usage and supply charges are higher than other plans available.
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