9 Things To Keep In Mind When You Compare Gas And Electricity Plans and Providers

Gas And Electricity

Are you looking to manage your household energy expense better? With fluctuating energy prices, finding the right gas and electricity plan prepares your household to budget better and helps you understand your energy consumption patterns. However, with a plethora of available options available, having to compare gas and electricity providers can get difficult, especially if you don’t know what to look for. While every energy provider will aim to help you find a practical solution, having a clear idea of what you are looking for will make the process more transparent and hassle-free. In this article, we discuss the nine things to keep in mind when you compare gas and electricity providers. 

  1. The tariff structure: Familiarity with tariff structures offered by energy providers ensures you opt for a plan that suits your needs. The common tariff plans in Australia for electricity are single rate, time of use and controlled load. At the same time, the tariff plans for gas include usage charges, supply charges or a combination of both. You can select which tariff plan is the most appropriate based on your household’s energy consumption patterns. 
  2. Eligibility for discounts and incentives: Energy providers offer various types of attractive discounts and incentives whenever a new household decides to upgrade or switch to save more. Check for sign-up bonuses, pay-on-time discounts, or even direct debit discounts. Additionally, confirm the base rates and clearly understand the terms mentioned in the contract before deciding to go forward with an energy retailer. 
  3. Contract terms and length: Carefully review the contract terms before you make a decision. Even if the offers seem like a steal, hidden costs could be involved. These can make the experience bitter and raise costs much higher than the original price. Read through the fine print and clearly understand the terms and conditions. Some providers may offer contract flexibility, whereas others might have a specific set of rules and regulations. Short-term contracts usually cost higher. Long-term contracts, meanwhile, shield a household against price volatility. Also, check if your household can get energy rebates on electricity and gas bills. 
  4. Green energy options: Renewable and green energy options usually have a higher initial investment but a more beneficial return on investment rates. Some providers may help your household make the switch to green energy. This will make your household more sustainable and support the growth of renewable energy initiatives in Australia. 
  5. Available billing and payment options: A crucial aspect of managing your budget better is to have a flexible payment option. Some providers will offer direct debit facilities or bi-monthly, monthly, and quarterly billing. This allows you to make a choice based on which cycle aligns best with your financial preferences.
  6. Provider reputation: Conduct thorough research before contacting an energy provider to discuss your plans. Also, read through customer reviews and testimonials when comparing gas and electricity plan providers in Australia. Understand their process of finally reaching a conclusion and the extent to which they can accommodate your requirements or requests. 
  7. Customer service and support: Reliable customer service ensures the provider or support staff is easily reachable, whether it’s an emergency or a user requires assistance with billing or account-related issues.
  8. Peak and off-peak pricing: Competitive peak and off-peak pricing rates ensure you can enjoy convenience and comfort without having to worry about your upcoming bills. This also helps in realigning your household’s energy consumption habits.
  9. Exit fees and flexibility: Before you sign up, check if any exit fee is involved with the plan and if the provider offers the flexibility to switch without imposing any penalties. You do not want to continue being covered under a contract that no longer serves the purpose. 

Whether planning to make an energy switch or simply browsing to compare gas and electricity plans, always put your requirements first. Offers, rebates and discounts are a great way to save on initial fees and investments. However, be cautious of the fine print before committing. 

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