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Bill shock: Aussies hit with $800 energy price rises

Some energy providers are charging Aussies more than $800 more than last year.

A composite image of Australian money and numerous energy bills staked on top of one another.
Aussies are set for some serious bill shock this winter. (Source: Getty)

Aussies will soon find themselves having to choose between staying warm or being able to afford their energy bills as the cooler weather hits its peak.

Some energy providers are charging over $800 more than a year ago, according to analysis by Finder.

Aussies living in South Australia would be hit with the worst hikes to their power bills, the research found.

For SA, annual estimates for residential households saw a price jump of between 22 and 63 per cent. That’s more than $800 for some people.

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NSW bill estimates for the year saw an increase of 15 to 36 per cent – a price difference of up to $420 for some customers.

In Victoria, prices were bumped by 22 to 31 per cent. That’s a price difference of up to $396 per year. More price pain will be felt from August 1 when VIC energy providers officially hit existing customers with higher prices.

In QLD, annual price estimates rose by 8 to 41 per cent. That’s up to a whopping $548 in price difference.

Aussies cutting back

More than three quarters (79 per cent) of Australians planned to cut back on electricity usage in winter as energy prices increased nationwide, a Finder survey of 1,090 respondents revealed.

That’s 7.3 million households who would be changing their habits to keep a cap on bills.

Finder energy expert Mariam Gabaji said high electricity prices were about to get even worse.

“Millions of Aussies need a reprieve and are taking matters into their own hands by cutting their usage,” Gabaji said.

“Some retailers are sending out notices informing customers of massive increases to their power rates, which will lead to widespread bill shock without urgent action.”

More than half (56 per cent) of Aussies planned to switch off lights and power points when not in use, while 54 per cent would have to cut down on how much they used their heater or air conditioner.

Gabaji said switching to a cheaper energy plan was the most effective way for households to safeguard themselves.

“Make sure you’re on one of the cheapest plans and switch again in six to 12 months if you find a better deal,” Gabaji said.

“Call your retailer to negotiate a cheaper deal, while simultaneously shopping around to see if you can do even better with another provider.

“State and federal governments have announced billions of dollars in extra relief, so check if you are eligible for any extra assistance.”

Hope to save on energy bills this winter

  • Choose the right heater. It's a myth that the smaller the heater, the less power and money it'll burn. Those giant reverse-cycle air conditioners that you might have installed but don't use for heating? Yep, they're actually the cheapest to run.

  • Compare and switch energy plans, look for rebates and concessions. Consider energy plans the same way you'd think about shopping for a winter coat. You'll look at a few different online or physical stores to see who's offering the best deal within your budget. Energy plans work the same way, though they're just a bit more complicated to understand. But, know this, you're likely to get a better deal if you haven't switched plans in more than 12 months.

  • Hack your home and make some lifestyle changes. Wearing extra layers, investing in an electric blanket and taking shorter showers could save you hundreds on your electricity bill per year. Standby-power use can cost the average household around $100 a year. By switching devices like air conditioners, game consoles and printers off at the wall instead of leaving them on in the background, you could cut down your annual energy bill. It's the small changes that can add up.

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