Electricity Concessions: Adelaide

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Post on June 12th, 2015

Save on your power bills with electricity concessions in SA

As well as looking around to compare electricity distributors and prices, there is also another way that residents of South Australia can save money on their electricity bills. The South Australian Government has a number of electricity concessions available to consumers that need them, each with differing criteria. We’ve made a list of the concessions available to South Australians, so you can see whether or not you qualify to save money through any of these avenues.

If you’re wondering what exactly an electricity concession is, it’s a saving that gets applied to your energy bill, that sees you get a percentage or monetary reduction to your bill, or a rebate, based on a certain set of circumstances. These concessions are offered on behalf of the State Government by electricity distributors, and are designed to give assistance or help to those consumers that need it. As you can see from the list below, these concessions follow rigorous guidelines, so there’s a chance you might not be eligible for one.

Electricity concessions available in SA

Here are some of the most common electricity concessions available in South Australia, and the requirements you must meet in order to receive these concessions.

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Energy bill concession

Residents of South Australia who are on low or fixed incomes are eligible to receive a concession of up to $217.90 per year to supplement household electricity and gas payments, including LPG bottled gas.

A resident may be eligible if they have one of the following:

  • Pensioner Concession Card
  • DVA Gold Card; for either War Widow/er, Total or Permanently Incapacitated (TPI) rate, Extreme Disablement Adjustment (EDA), or Disability Pension
  • Centrelink Health Care Card, including a low income health care card
  • Commonwealth Seniors Health Care Card
  • Currently receive an eligible Centrelink allowance

Eligible residents can apply online
or print out an application form and post it to the “Reply Paid” address indicated. No postage is necessary.

If a resident is eligible for an energy concession, the concession amount will be deducted from their electricity account or may be sent by cheque.

If a resident changes energy retailers, they must contact the Concessions Hotline at 1800 307 758 or e-mail directly at concessions@dfc.sa.gov.au to update their new account number and new energy retailer details. This will ensure that all eligible residents continue to receive their concessions in a timely manner.

Verified asylum seekers are also able to receive this rebate through their Status Resolution Support Service (SRSS), if they meet similar eligibility criteria.

Medical Heating and Cooling Concession

The Medical Heating and Cooling Concession is available for South Australian consumers on a fixed or low income who have a clinically verified medical condition that requires them to use frequent heating or cooling in their home, in order to stop their condition from getting any worse. This is available for those suffering from chronic illnesses like multiple sclerosis, autonomic system dysfunction, severe inflammatory skin conditions, or significant burns, and aren’t able to sufficiently self-regulate their personal heating or cooling.

The current rebate for this scheme sits at $217.90 each year for eligible applicants, including GST. To be eligible, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • be a resident of South Australia
  • have, or be the parent or legal guardian of someone with a qualifying medical condition
  • have certification from a qualified medical specialist saying that they suffer from one of these medical conditions
  • live at their primary place of residence, which has an air conditioning or heating unit
  • be seen as being financially responsible for paying the electricity bill
  • hold one of the following concession cards:
    • a current Pensioner Concession Card
    • DVA Gold Card; for either War Widow/er, TPI, or EDA rate
    • Low Income Health Care Card
    • or a Commonwealth Seniors Health Care Card
  • or currently receive an eligible Centrelink allowance.

Cost of living concession

While not solely for electricity bills, the SA Government’s cost of living concession helps residents on low or fixed incomes by providing them with extra income with which to pay their utility bills. This covers electricity (hence why we mention it), but also includes gas, water, or medical bills.

A resident may be eligible if they have one of the following:

  • Pensioner Concession Card
  • DVA Gold Card; for either War Widow/er, TPI, or EDA
  • Centrelink Health Care Card, including a low income health care card
  • Commonwealth Seniors Health Care Card
  • Currently receive an eligible Centrelink allowance.

This concession is currently set per household, and provides $202.70 for homeowner-occupiers, $101.40 for homeowner-occupiers who are self-funded retirees with a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card, and $101.40 for tenants.

It is important to note that applications for the 2017-18 financial year concession are now closed, but are likely to open up again towards the end of the year for the 2018-19 financial year.

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Not eligible for an electricity rebate?

If you aren’t eligible for one of the electricity concessions mentioned above, then you can consider yourself lucky. However, this doesn’t mean you’re stuck with paying high electricity prices. There are still ways that you can combat rising utility costs, and save energy at the same time. Better yet, they’re absolutely free.

So if you’re after practical, immediate ways that you can reduce your energy use and save money on your electricity bill, we recommend you take the following nine steps. You might be surprised at how easy it is to change your energy use habits!

  1. Remember to switch off any lights in your home when you don’t need them. Sure, it’s obvious, but remembering to do this every time you leave a room can have a long-term, sustainable impact on reducing your power bill.
  2. Turn off non-essential appliances at the wall—things like computers, TVs, dryers, washing machines, microwaves, kettles, and even phone chargers—when they’re not in use. If they’re still switched on, they’re still draining your electricity, so turning them off—or unplugging altogether—is a great way to save money.
  3. Shorten your shower time. Keeping your showers to four minutes or less doesn’t just save water, but uses less energy required for heating.
  4. Dry your clothes outside instead of in the dryer. Doing four loads of laundry outside can reduce your electricity bill by almost $150, so why not make the most of our beautiful Australian weather>?
  5. Do the same with cooling your home—do it naturally. Close any windows, blinds, and curtains during summer to keep out the sun’s heat, and open them up again when the sun starts to set to let in the cooler evening air. You’ll save quite a bit of money, as opposed to using your air conditioner.
  6. You can even choose to use a fan instead of the air conditioner. A fan works out to be 80% cheaper to use, and can help you save up to $200 a year on your power bill.
  7. If it gets so hot that you do need to resort to air con, set it to between 23°C and 26°C. Doing this will save roughly $80 on your power bill—and after all, your house doesn’t need to be an ice box! For every degree that you increase it you’ll save roughly 10% on the cost of electricity it uses.
  8. The average four-person Australian household can comfortably survive on one fridge, so if you’ve got two fridges, think about whether you actually need them both. Older fridges use anywhere from two to three times more electricity than newer, energy-efficient models, so running on only one fridge has the potential to save you up to an estimated $200 a year on your bill.
  9. Running high-powered appliances like your dishwasher or your washing machine during off-peak times (usually at night) means you’ll be charged less for your use. So find out what hours your retailer considers to be off-peak, and do your washing or wash your dishes then.

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Committing to changing your electricity habits and using these energy-saving tips can have the effect of saving you hundreds of dollars on your electricity bill, every year. It all adds up!

But to see real, big-time savings, there’s one more thing you can do: do a comparison of electricity retailers, shop around for a new electricity plan, and make the switch to a company that will do you a better, cheaper deal on your electricity.

That’s what we’re here for.

Get a better deal on your electricity bills

At Electricity Wizard, we do all the hard work for you. When you call us, we’ll compare your rates and plans against our preferred suppliers available in your area and help you select a great plan for you to help cut down costs and meet any other criteria you may have. Best of all, our service is completely free, so what do you have to lose?

Try us today! Call Electricity Wizard now on 1300 359 779 or fill out your details below to have one of our comparison specialists help you get a better deal on your energy bills starting today!

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