Media Release

Zapped! 2 million Aussies have felt energy bill shock

        • Finder launches new energy comparison service
        • South Australians most likely to open an unexpectedly high bill
        • What to do if you receive a big bill

19 December, 2019, Sydney, Australia – Electricity bills are one of the biggest financial strains on households giving an unwanted jolt this Christmas, according to Finder, Australia's most visited comparison site.

New research shows one third (32%) of Australians admit – or over two million households – they've been left shocked by a hefty electricity bill in the past 18 months.

Bill shock is an issue for 38% of customers in South Australia, compared to just 28% in Queensland.

Graham Cooke, energy expert at Finder, said household finances can be wiped out by electricity bills.

"Households dread getting one of these bills at this time of year – electricity bills are responsible for sending many Aussies into a payment panic," he said.

"For those living paycheck to paycheck, this large expense can derail households financially for months.

Finder has launched a new energy comparison service, comparing over 30 brands for electricity and over 20 brands for gas.

"Our research shows energy bills are a cause of stress for many Australian households and we also know many Aussies are becoming increasingly eco-conscious. Our new energy comparison service has been designed with this in mind – combining estimated prices based on usage with prominent green ratings and green power options," he said.

The cost of keeping an average home powered in 2017-2018 was $1,384 - or $27 a week - according to the Australian Energy Market Commission.

"Consumers can feel quite desperate when faced with an electricity bill and yet many feel powerless to change how much their provider charges ," said Cooke.

Cooke said there's a handful of strategies households can implement to bring bills down.

"Investigate whether you can pay your energy bill in monthly instalments rather than in one quarterly lump sum," he said.

"Obviously you need to look at your electricity usage and consciously cut back on any wastage.

"Finally shop around for a better deal. If a provider is offering a cheaper plan, it can really add up over time," Cooke said.

The Finder energy comparison service guides Australian households through the process of finding the right energy plan and ensuring they are not paying too much.

Have you experienced an unexpectedly high energy bill in the past 18 months?

State/TerritoryYes
South Australia38%
Victoria34%
Australian Capital Territory34%
Western Australia34%
New South Wales33%
Tasmania29%
Queensland28%

What to do if you receive a big electricity bill

  • Review your bill. You should do this every month regardless, but compare this bill to the previous month's. Double check details are correct such as your address and meter number
  • Did your discounts end? If you've been on the same plan for a while, discounts or special offers may have expired.
  • Check your concession details. It's possible that your concession or rebate details haven't been applied. Contact customer support, ask them to be added to your account and resend an updated bill.
  • Shop around. If you've been with the same brand or on the same plan for a few years, there's likely a better deal out there. Jump online and compare plans.

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For further information

Disclaimer

The information in this release is accurate as of the date published, but rates, fees and other product features may have changed. Please see updated product information on finder.com.au's review pages for the current correct values.

About us

Every month 2.2 million unique visitors turn to Finder to save money and time, and to make important life choices. We compare virtually everything from credit cards, phone plans, health insurance, travel deals and much more.

Our free service is 100% independently-owned by two Australians: Fred Schebesta and Frank Restuccia. Since launching in 2006, Finder has helped Aussies find what they need from 1,800+ brands across 100+ categories.

We continue to expand and launch around the globe, and now operate in the United States and the United Kingdom. For further information visit www.finder.com.au.

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