Maintaining a home
Are you on the best energy plan?
4 December 2023
Whether you live in a humble studio apartment or a sprawling estate, certain things apply to all types of dwellings – like using and paying for utilities. But how do you know if you’re getting bang for your buck on your energy plan? Read on to learn more.
How much am I paying for my energy?
Regardless of your billing frequency, the first thing you’ll likely spot when opening a bill is the amount due or owing. Since bills tend to be seasonal, when reviewing your power bill, compare it to the same period the year before – not the previous quarter – and be sure to check how much a kWh cost this year compared to last year.
Decoding your energy bill: key terms explained
The ins and outs of an energy plan can be confusing. Here are some key terms on your power bill you may be unfamiliar with:
- Your account number is a unique number assigned to you by the utility company to keep track of your account.
- The supply or service address is where your meter is located and the address that will be billed.
- For electricity, your National Meter Identifier (NMI) is unique to your property.
- Your electricity usage is tracked by kilowatt (kWh).
- Your average daily load is your average daily consumption of electricity measured in kWhs.
- Peak usage refers to the maximum power requirement for your system/home. This can be at one given time or reflect the average usage or load over a given period of time.
Once you understand your usage, you’ll be able to see where you could save by reviewing costs. If there’s a better deal on the market, it could be worth switching providers.
How to save energy
If you’re uncertain of how you can lower your bills, don’t fret! There are many ways you can save on power, including:
- Compare energy prices with other retailers to make sure you’re on the best plan.
- Regulate the temperature of your home if you use air conditioning – don’t just leave it on all day and night if you don’t need to!
- Turn lights, devices and appliances off when they’re not in use.
- Use energy efficient LED light bulbs.
- Install solar panels for renewable energy generation.
Exiting your current plan
If you’ve found a better deal with another energy provider, check if you’re current plan is a fixed-term contract – like 24 months – or whether you’re free to leave at your discretion. Many companies now have ‘no lock-in’ contracts, and it’s common for people to switch energy providers as new deals come onto the market. The company you want to change plans to will also often manage the changeover process, so little effort should be needed on your part.
Regulated and deregulated energy markets
Where you live in Australia may determine whether switching energy providers will save you money or not. For example, electricity prices in the ACT and Western Australia are determined by the State Government annually as part of the State Budget process.
Remember to insure
Like energy plans, insurance should meet your needs. After all, we know that every one of our home insurance customers is different. With Suncorp Home and Contents Insurance, you can choose from three levels of cover – Classic, Classic Extras, and Classic Advantages. Each provide a great range of options and limits which can help make it easier for you to choose a suitable cover.
- Seven ways to make your home more eco-friendly
- Home security tips
- A guide to unoccupied home insurance
Insurance is issued by AAI Limited ABN 48 005 297 807 trading as Suncorp Insurance. Read the relevant Product Disclosure Statement. The Target Market Determination is also available. This advice has been prepared without taking into account your particular objectives, financial situations or needs, so you should consider whether it is appropriate for you before acting on it. The information is intended to be of a general nature only. Subject to any rights you may have under any law, we do not accept any legal responsibility for any loss or damage, including loss of business or profits or any other indirect loss, incurred as a result of reliance upon it – please make your own enquiries.