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Post on June 13th, 2015

Compare energy providers and start saving today

Sometimes, saving money really is that easy. When you contact ElectricityWizard at 1300 359 779 or fill out the form below for more information, we’ll help you compare energy providers so that you can access a better deal on your next quarterly electricity bill in minutes.

How does it work exactly? ElectricityWizard offers our energy comparison service free of charge. We will help you to compare apples to apples to locate a better energy provider in your area to lock in potentially lower rates in a matter of minutes.

Just call us directly for more information, and one of our friendly customer service representatives will be happy to provide you with expert guidance to compare retailers near you. ElectricityWizard has already helped more than 165,000 residential and business customers take advantage of the comparison of cheaper energy rates, and we want to do the same for you!

How to compare electricity providers

Shopping around to compare energy providers is easy when you use a free, no-obligation energy comparison quote available from ElectricityWizard. But you can also undertake this process yourself. It takes some time, sure, but the key is knowing what to look for in an electricity plan, and working out what matters to you.

When you start looking to compare energy companies, the key is to think of it like a long-term relationship. You want to get the most out of this relationship with your electricity company, so make sure you know what’s important to you in a company. You might want to think about the following:

  • There are some companies who source their energy from more environmentally-friendly power sources, so if you care about your environmental footprint, look at companies who get their power from green energy sources.
  • Some customers feel more comfortable speaking with a customer service representative in their local area, who understands their local issues. If this is you, consider looking for a company that’s locally-owned and operated.
  • The energy market is slowly changing, and newer providers are regularly coming onto the market. While the age of a company doesn’t necessarily mean anything, some of the newer companies offer a more streamlined, customer-focused business model, and are thinking differently about the way an energy supplier works—so choosing a newer energy provider might provide you with a more modern, customer-focused service offering.

So take a good look at the different electricity providers available in your area. Do some research and have a bit of a read about each one. We recommend seeing what consumer reviews say about these companies—while some might be off the mark (you can’t please everyone, after all), customer reviews can give you an idea of how people who are like you think, so you can develop a picture of how these companies will work for you.

But having a look to compare energy providers is just the start—now the real fun begins. Now it’s time to compare what each energy provider can do for you.

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Expert tips to find the best energy provider near you

When comparing energy providers to find the electricity plan that’s best for you, it pays (literally) to understand what the energy provider is charging you for.

Know your charges

Here’s a breakdown of what to look at when comparing energy providers and plans.

To start with, determine the type of electricity tariff your home is on. There are a few basic tariffs you’ll come across:

  • Single rate tariff – A single rate tariff is one set rate for your electricity usage, no matter what time or how much of it you use. These types of tariffs can tend to be lower than other tariffs, and can a good way to save a bit of money, especially if you use the most of your energy during peak time.
  • Time of use tariff – A time of use tariff is exactly what it says it is—you get charged at different usage rates depending on the time when you use your electricity. This is usually divided into peak and off-peak times, which are usually throughout the day and overnight, respectively.
  • Controlled load tariffs – Controlled load tariffs apply only to single appliances that have their own electricity meter, so things like pool pumps, electric hot water systems, and underfloor heating (if you live in a colder area). While the tariff only applies to one appliance, you can have more than one appliance running that’s on its own controlled load tariff.
  • Feed-in tariffs – This is only for houses with solar panels. If your panels generate energy but you aren’t using all of it, this remainder gets supplied back to the electricity grid so other people can use it, and you get paid a small credit for each kilowatt hour that you supply.

You should be able to find your current tariff on your latest electricity bill, usually on the back side of the bill. While it looks like a lot of numbers and percentages, this is where you can find information on other fees that your provider is charging you.

Here’s where you’ll also find what your supplier is charging for your “service to property charge” or “supply charge”. This is a common fee, so no need to worry; think of it as being similar to a line rental for your power lines, that your electricity supplier pays to their energy distributor.

This fee typically stays the same price every bill—unless your provider changes their pricing structure. It’s useful to keep this fee in mind when comparing electricity plans, because if you see a plan with a much lower supply charge, this is probably getting offset by a higher electricity usage fee.

So now you know what you’re getting charged for, it’s time to start contacting energy providers to start comparing their services, and their plans. But it helps to know what to look for when comparing electricity plans to find the cheapest power, and a plan that suits you.

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Understanding what’s on offer

If you’re looking for the best energy provider in your local area there are a few key questions to ask to make sure you’re going to find a plan that’s right for you. We recommend you ask the following questions and take the following tips (including some from the Australian Energy Regulator, so you know you’re onto a good thing) into consideration to make a wise decision:

  • What are your Peak Rate/Off Peak Rate/Supply Charges? Determine at what time you use the most electricity, and find a supplier that provides the best rate during this time. Here you should look at your energy usage habits. Making easy changes to your habits, like running your high-load appliances (washing machine, dryer, dishwasher) at night time can save you money, and help you reduce your energy footprint at the same time.
  • How much can you increase my rates each year in this contract? The majority of electricity companies will keep your rates in line with the CPI, or tell you that there’s NO CAP. Avoid any supplier that doesn’t offer you a price cap, as this can be a sign they intend to increase their rates in the near future.
  • What will you charge me if I move house? Work out if you’re going to get hit with any fees when moving house—it’s already a stressful experience enough on its own, and extra costs only add to this.
  • Do you offer any discounts? Suppliers often give discounts for things as simple as paying your bill on time, opting in to email notification, and setting up direct debit billing. But be sure to check the terms and conditions for any discount you receive—you don’t want to find any surprise fees later down the track. So ask the question, and see if you can make some savings.
  • Will you give me a discount off the total bill or just the usage rates? This one is important to know, as there’s quite a difference in price with a discount off your rates, as opposed to a discount off your total bill. You don’t want to think you’re getting a discount on one thing, then get stung with a higher bill than you expected later.
  • But make sure to check first with your current retailer to ask for a special discount before signing a new energy contract. In States like yours with full retail competition, your current energy provider may be more than willing to offer you a special deal to keep your business.
  • Can you match or beat another company’s offer? Much like other goods and services electronics or motor vehicles, your electricity supplier might be willing to match, or even beat, rates set by their competitors. So look around, find a rate that works for you, then ask the energy provider if they’ll match it. This allows you to get a better rate and save money, with an energy provider that suits you.
  • Keep in mind that it will take several months to complete the switching process. Although it only takes a few minutes to find the best energy provider in your area, it will take several months to finalize the switch to a new energy contract. You will be billed by your new energy retailer on the date of your next electricity meter reading.
  • Remember to check your first energy bill after making the switch. To make sure that you have received all of the discounts and bonuses that you have been promised in your new energy contract, take the time to review your first bill carefully from a new electricity retailer.

While this all sounds like a lot to remember, keeping this information in mind is important. These tips and questions won’t just help you a better rate, but—importantly—they’ll also let you see how your prospective energy provider handles customer service. Knowing their personality will help you decide if they’re the one you want a relationship with for the long-term.

But if this does all sound like a lot, then don’t worry—you’re not alone in this.

For help in finding a better energy provider in your area, you can trust ElectricityWizard to get the job done. We will compare apples to apples, taking into account credits, green options, terms and conditions, energy rates, and much more, to help you find a better deal to meet your needs.

If you’re ready to potentially save a bundle on your electricity, call us to help you compare energy providers and make the switch today!

How to compare electricity providers

ElectricityWizard allows you to quickly and conveniently compare electricity providers and plans in your area. One of our trained specialists can help you find the available rates and options in your service region so that you can choose a better plan to meets your needs and potentially save a bundle.

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