Understanding your electricity bill
Electricity bills in a body corporate scheme can sometimes seem complicated. If you’re struggling to make sense of all the details on your bill, it can help to have a more in-depth look at all the aspects of your bill.
The Queensland Government has published the below information through their “Energy Made Easy” service.
Here’s what your electricity bill covers, and the useful information you can gain from having a closer look.
Your account summary
Like the name suggests, this section is an at-a-glance summary of your electricity charges, including:
- How much you currently owe
- The amount you’ve recently paid
- Any overdue amounts
- Any adjustments, rebates or discounts
You will often be offered a pay on time discount here, so make sure you always take advantage of it.
Your account details
This contains all the details of your account, such as your account number. You’ll need to quote this when you contact your electricity provider for any enquiries.
Your government energy concessions
Any government energy concessions you are receiving will be displayed as a credit here.
The tariff or plan name
It’s surprising how many people don’t know this, but this section shows you what plan you are under.
Customer’s accounts are charged at different rates, depending on what plan they’re on. Take a moment to compare different tariffs, and make sure the one you’re on is the most efficient for your usage.
Where to call for help
Here you can quickly and easily find the important numbers you need. It’s handy to have all the details of how best to get in contact provided in one place.
Most people spend a fair amount of time searching for the correct contact details of their provider if they encounter a problem, as many don’t pay attention to the details of their bill. Save yourself some time next time you need advice or assistance, and just look at your bill.
Your usage statistics
This section makes it clear how much electricity you’re using. Depending on what provider you’re with, the bill might show your usage compared to other households in your area, or your usage over time.
Take note of any differences in your average daily use or your usage over time. You might be able to attribute such differences to the installation of a new electrical appliance, or a change in habits (such as many of us have experienced while working at home). Think about what might be causing your usage to rise, and explore ways to reign in your usage.
Connection information and meter reading
This section contains information about your electricity connection and when your meter will be read. You’ll also be able to see whether your meter was actually read, or whether usage has been estimated because the meter could not be read for some reason.
Taking note of the date of your meter reading can help you budget for payment of your bill. You will usually receive the bill a few days after the meter reading. If your meter could not be read, contact your provider to find out why, and how you can fix this problem.
You’ll see a breakdown of how much electricity you used at what tariffs (such as peak or off-peak). If you see controlled load on your bill, it signifies a different rate being charged for one of your appliances. Contact your provider to find out more.
This section can help you see where you’re using the most electricity, and thus allow you to identify opportunities to reduce usage.
Rates and charges
Here you’ll find the individual rates (or tariffs) you are charged for the electricity you use. Usage at different times of the day, such as peak or off-peak, is charged at different rates. You’ll also be able to see the dollar amount for each tariff for your usage over the billing period.
Have a look at your service to property (supply) charge. You can compare this easily between providers to help you get the best deal.
There will be a number of different ways you can pay your bill, and this section outlines them.
Some payment options come with additional fees. Try and avoid these options if possible, and make sure you understand the specific conditions for each payment option.
Understanding your electricity bill is half the battle – the other half is how you act on the information you uncover. Your electricity bill is a great resource to help you save money, so take a few moments to identify ways to reduce usage. It might also be a good time to see who might be able to provide you with a better deal.
Click here to access the Qld Government pdf version of the above information.
For more information visit the Energy Made Easy website.
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