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Canberra’s Best Electricity Providers

By Emily Morris 7 March 2018 10

Energy in Australia is a hot topic these days. Everyone wants to be sure they are getting the best deal available but it’s not always a straightforward matter. More and more people are finding the array of options and providers overwhelming and confusing.

A little bit of homework on your part can make the process of choosing an energy provider a lot less painful. We are here to help. We’ve done some research for you and have come up with some points to consider when comparing your options. Let’s get right into it.

What Makes a Reliable and Honest Electricity Provider?

  • Pricing. Let’s be honest, price is probably the first thing to consider when choosing an energy plan. You might like to use an online comparison website to help you work through costing. The other option is to call each provider, ask them all the same questions, and compare them yourself.
  • Reputation. Look for a provider that has been in the market for a while. New providers can come into the market with all sorts of incentives, but you want to make sure they are going to be around long-term. If they suddenly disappear, you’ll be faced with switching providers. This can be costly, not to mention time consuming.
  • Plans. Does the provider have a plan that is suited specifically to your needs? Every household has different energy requirements and you don’t want to end up paying for services you don’t use.
  • Customer Service. When something goes wrong or you have questions about your service you should be able to easily contact your provider, be met with a courteous response and get the relevant information you need. When these conditions fail to be met it is very easy to become dissatisfied and frustrated with your service.
  • Transparency. Nobody likes to read the fine print but it’s recommended that you do this when choosing an energy provider. Ask for an Energy Price Fact Sheet. It should include tariff rates, all fees, all discounts and rebates, length of contract, cooling off period, where to access full terms and conditions, green power options, and options for solar customers. There are a number of Government websites that can help: try the Australian Energy Regulator’s My Energy Service and actsmart.

The Top 3 Electricity Providers in Canberra

We’ve done some research on energy providers in the Canberra area and came up with three great options to consider.

1. ActewAGL

ActewAGL is a local energy provider with a history of over 100 years of community involvement. You can be sure they won’t be going anywhere soon.

Combining traditional customer service with state-of-the-art products, ActewAGL offers the best of both worlds. Great plans, very competitive pricing and flexible payment options are just the start of all the benefits you get when you choose ActewAGL.

Feel confident that you’re getting a great product, and at the same time, you’re part of a local company. ActewAGL employs over 800 people and takes pride in their community involvement, including sponsorship, fundraising and philanthropy. ActewAGL guarantees, “When it comes to being your local energy retailer, we’ll always be there for you.”

2. Origin Energy

Origin Energy is the largest energy provider in Australia.

They offer a range of benefits, including an extensive range of energy plans, online account management, flexible payment options, no lock-in contracts or exit fees, simple sign up and next business day connection. That’s a lot of great reasons to consider Origin when you’re looking for an energy provider.

3. Energy Australia

With over 1.7 million customers, Energy Australia is a large and reliable energy provider in Australia.

As well as winning awards for customer service and offering easy online account management, including quick sign up, Energy Australia is able to offer a 100% carbon neutral plan.

Other great benefits include online live chat, an innovative incentive plan and competitive discounts.

Your Experience with Electricity Providers in Canberra

What kind of experience have you had with electricity providers in Canberra? Share your story in the comments section below.

 

What’s Your opinion?


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Canberra’s Best Electricity Providers
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greenbamboo 10:12 am 31 Aug 16

your best bet would be ACTEWAGL

dungfungus 9:28 am 08 Mar 16

rommeldog56 said :

dungfungus said :

Is it correct to say that as the supply of ACTEW’s renewables becomes a bigger portion of supply to ACT residents the price will increase commensurately?
That being the case can “conscientious objectors” choose to get power from another supplier who will have cheaper, mainly coal generated electricity?

No – ACTEWAGL advised me that customers will have no choice but to pay the higher “green” electricity charges. Its not “optional”.

If the alternate electricity providers do not adopt the same “Green” pricing structure, it will be very interesting to see how many customers electricity customers ACTEWAGL lose. If I were running a commercial business where cost of inputs was important, I would certainly go to the cheapest most suitable electricity provider. As will many pensioners, self funded retirees, the disabled, aged, etc.

ACTEWAGL pays a “dividend” or a return/fee to the ACT Government. So, is it any wonder that the ACT Gov’t has chosen mot to provide better incentives to homeowners and developers to install their own solar power (to the level of self sufficiency) and has followed the “green” energy solution through ACTEWAGL !!!

Now, I wonder how much all our electricity bill really will increase……..

If the increases in water supply charges is an benchmark then we will be buying more blankets.
It is time for the government to sell ACTEW – they had a chance a number of years ago but declined.
There is no way it can continue to exist in a genuine competitive market especially with the amount of debt it is carrying. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-12-20/review-recommends-actew-water-energy-services-be-split/5170062

rommeldog56 7:49 am 08 Mar 16

dungfungus said :

Is it correct to say that as the supply of ACTEW’s renewables becomes a bigger portion of supply to ACT residents the price will increase commensurately?
That being the case can “conscientious objectors” choose to get power from another supplier who will have cheaper, mainly coal generated electricity?

No – ACTEWAGL advised me that customers will have no choice but to pay the higher “green” electricity charges. Its not “optional”. If the alternate electricity providers do not adopt the same “Green” pricing structure, it will be very interesting to see how many customers electricity customers ACTEWAGL lose. If I were running a commercial business where cost of inputs was important, I would certainly go to the cheapest most suitable electricity provider. As will many pensioners, self funded retirees, the disabled, aged, etc.

ACTEWAGL pays a “dividend” or a return/fee to the ACT Government. So, is it any wonder that the ACT Gov’t has chosen mot to provide better incentives to homeowners and developers to install their own solar power (to the level of self sufficiency) and has followed the “green” energy solution through ACTEWAGL !!!

Now, I wonder how much all our electricity bill really will increase……..

wildturkeycanoe 6:29 am 08 Mar 16

arescarti42 said :

-Depending on your needs, use a radiant heater (e.g. the ones with the glowing bars) rather than the panel heaters. They’re not any more efficient (unlike reverse cycle), but because they direct it directly on you rather than heating up the air/furniture and other things in your house, they use less electricity (e.g. you could be as comfortable sitting in front of a 500w radiant heater as you would be with a 2400w wall heater heating up the whole room).

-Rug up and avoid heating as much as possible.

I second the advice to ditch the electric wall furnace, the most expensive form of heating next to gas wall furnaces. You may well save the entire cost of installing a small split system in your first winter power bill, as wall heaters can really chew up the electrons and not even warm up the house. They also can be fire hazards if flammable clothing is left in front of the outlet or if the dust inside isn’t cleaned out once in a while.
Heavy block-out curtains also help to keep the cold out and the heat in, plus using the windows to vent out heat and bring in the cool night-time air.

arescarti42 10:05 pm 07 Mar 16

ActewAGL is the only distributor of electricity and gas in the ACT – other companies just sell their services. As such connection and usage charges will be pretty much the same, but each will give different discounts for direct debit/bundling etc. Origin was doing a $100 grocery voucher a few months back, which was the best deal when I last moved house.

As for your electric wall heaters, unfortunately the reality is they’re probably going to be very expensive to run. My suggestions are:

-Install reverse cycle air conditioning if you can (25-30% of the cost to run)

-If you’re likely to be using them most at peak times (i.e. 7am-9am and 5pm-8pm) then get a fixed rate electricity plan, rather than a time of use plan

-Depending on your needs, use a radiant heater (e.g. the ones with the glowing bars) rather than the panel heaters. They’re not any more efficient (unlike reverse cycle), but because they direct it directly on you rather than heating up the air/furniture and other things in your house, they use less electricity (e.g. you could be as comfortable sitting in front of a 500w radiant heater as you would be with a 2400w wall heater heating up the whole room).

-Rug up and avoid heating as much as possible.

MrPC 5:55 pm 07 Mar 16

If using electric heating, consider going onto a time of use plan. That may involve getting a new power meter installed. Coal fired power is ridiculously cheap overnight and on weekends, and there is a lot of solar power around that will eventually make power cheap mid morning til early afternoon too.

If you can keep your power usage low on weekday evenings when power is expensive, you feel a lot more free to burn through the power at other times with impunity – like firing up electric heaters on timer switches from 2am til 6am when it’s actually cold.

Southmouth 3:08 pm 07 Mar 16

Your choice is not so much which supplier but more cold or poor.

dungfungus 2:44 pm 07 Mar 16

csdaly said :

I can depend on the amount of electricity you use and type of household. You could try the comparator on the Australian Energy Regulator’s site (http://www.aer.gov.au/consumers/switching-retailers). ACTEW has been and continues to be quite dominant in the ACT market. Market dominance can impact the level of price competition.

Is it correct to say that as the supply of ACTEW’s renewables becomes a bigger portion of supply to ACT residents the price will increase commensurately?
That being the case can “conscientious objectors” choose to get power from another supplier who will have cheaper, mainly coal generated electricity?

wildturkeycanoe 2:43 pm 07 Mar 16

They all make wonderful promises if you sign up on a contract for certain term, pay your bill on time or direct debit regularly. Price wise per kWh they would be pretty much the same so it is probably best to ring around and see who can get you the best package. I don’t know if Actew still do bundle discounts as the water branch is now a separate entity.
Actually, looking just then the only option you have is Energy Australia [terrible reviews], Origin [slightly better but still bad reviews] or Actew. You can’t look up prices without entering details on their website unfortunately so you have to do the legwork yourself.

csdaly 1:30 pm 07 Mar 16

I can depend on the amount of electricity you use and type of household. You could try the comparator on the Australian Energy Regulator’s site (http://www.aer.gov.au/consumers/switching-retailers). ACTEW has been and continues to be quite dominant in the ACT market. Market dominance can impact the level of price competition.

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