Victoria has the most competitive electricity market in Australia. This competition is good for consumers who like to shop around for the next best deal. However, it can be confusing with the dozens of retailers to choose from. How can you find the right deal for you?
Electricity Contracts in VIC
There are two types of electricity contracts are currently available in Victoria, namely standard contracts and market contracts.
Standard Contracts – Also known as Standing Offers with ongoing contract and no exit fees. These also default contracts for households who never switched providers in Melbourne and the rest of Victoria. Retailers set the prices with certain rules set by the Essential Services Commission. Electricity companies offer a standard contract in addition to their market offers.
Market Contracts – These are contracts set by energy retailers which come with varying contract lengths, discounts and benefit periods which can provide the opportunity to cut costs as long as they stick to the conditions.
Electricity Charges in VIC
Electricity offers come in all sorts of prices and charges including two major costs-supply charges and usage charges. Consider these rates when offering energy plans. Large households should pay attention to usage rates, smaller households with modest usage should look for plans with lower fixed daily supply costs.
Supply Charges – These are charges that households incur for being connected to the grid which typically cost around $1 per day in Energy in Victoria, remains the same every day no matter how much energy is being used.
Usage Charges – These are rates for actual electricity usage which depends on different tariffs. Standard peak usage charges in Victoria can cost anywhere from 28 to 44 cents per kWh.
Electricity Plans in VIC
There are a lot of different plans to pick from several retailers, often differentiated by conditional discounts on offer and falls into two categories – Variable rates and Fixed rates. Majority of electricity plans in Victoria come with variable rates. Fixed rate plans are usually offered by AGL, Energy Australia and Origin.
Variable Rate Plans – Electricity plans have variable rate usage and supply. Providers can change the prices for electricity usage and supply at any time with prior notice. These plans have cheaper rates than fixed-rate plans.
Fixed Rate Plans – These plans lock-in supply and usage charges for a set period, usually two years. This added convenience might come at a higher price.
Electricity Discounts in VIC
Most electricity providers in Victoria offer plans with huge discounts of usage charges up to 40% or more in some cases. Discounts are provided in certain conditions. It’s usually applied if you:
- Pay your bills on time
- Pay bills by direct debit
- Receive bills via email
- Online sign – up
Retailers offer a wide range of sign – up incentives, reward programs like gift cards, theme park tickets, holiday packages.
Electricity Tariffs in VIC
Tariffs relate to the pricing structure of an energy plan with different usage charges applied based on energy usage. Tariffs in Victoria falls into two categories:
Single Rate Tariffs
This is referred to as “peak rate tariff” as all electricity usage is effectively charged at peak rates. Same usage charge applies no matter what time you use power.
Time of Use Tariffs
This is also known as flexible pricing. You will be charged with different electricity rates depending on when you use power. Time of use tariffs are only available if your property has a smart meter, the majority of households in Victoria are now installed with smart meters. Flexible pricing is very common and can be helpful in reducing energy costs, especially if you use most power at off-peak times. Demand tariffs are also starting to be made available in Victoria. Rates are split into three categories.
- Peak: These rates apply from the early afternoon until the late evening (e.g. 2pm-8pm). The most expensive rates you will pay, these charges can cost up to and over 50 cents per kWh.
- Off-peak: These rates apply from the late evening until the early morning (e.g. overnight from 10pm-7am) and at weekends. These charges typically cost less than 25 cents per kWh.
- Shoulder: These rates apply at all other times of day (e.g. late morning until early afternoon). Cheaper than peak rates but more expensive than off-peak rates, expect to pay around 26-32 cents per kWh.
Controlled Load Tariffs
This is also known as “dedicated circuit” that allows you to pay for high – usage appliances at a cheaper rate. It’s usually applied to electric hot water heaters but with more than one circuit. Controlled load tariffs are much cheaper than other charges, usually less than 25 cents per kWh. The drawback is that power will only be supplied for a few hours each day.
Electricity Distribution Networks in VIC
Victoria has five electricity distributors and the cost of supplying power to your home depends on which network you happen to live within. The distributors manage the infrastructure (i.e. poles and wires) that transports energy. the retailers pass on distributor costs to customers, the suburb you decide to live in will impact your energy bills. Distributor costs can account for up to 50% of your overall bill. The five electricity distributors in Victoria are:
- Citipower – servicing Melbourne and inner suburbs
- Jemena – servicing northern and South-Western suburbs
- Powercor Australia – servicingWestern suburbs and Western Victoria
- AusNet Services – servicing outer Northern and Eastern suburbs, plus Eastern Victoria
- United Energy Distribution – servicing Southern suburbs and Mornington Peninsula
Complete List of Electricity Providers in VIC
- Alinta Energy
- Amaysim Energy
- Click Energy
- Diamond Energy
- Dodo Power & Gas
- Energy Australia
- Globird Energy
- Lumo Energy
- Momentum Energy
- People Energy
- Q Energy
- Red Energy
- Simply Energy
- Sumo Power
- Tango Energy (formerly Pacific Hydro)
- 1st Energy
Where can you find the cheapest electricity prices in VIC?