Many Aussies will have noticed their energy bills go up recently, with electricity prices skyrocketing by as much as 25 per cent in some states.
The federal government has given eligible households up to $500 in energy bill relief, through its Energy Bill Relief Fund. This is generally available for people on Centrelink payments, including low-income households, seniors and families.
But there are also a number of energy rebates and concessions, including rebates for installing solar power, available from the various states and territories.
Here’s a state-by-state breakdown.
New South Wales
The New South Wales government offers a range of energy rebates for low-income households, families and seniors.
For example, eligible concession cardholders can apply for a $285-per-year NSW Low Income Household Rebate.
Families receiving the Family Tax Benefit can apply for a $180-per-year NSW Family Energy Rebate.
Independent retirees with a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card can apply for a $200-per-year Seniors Energy Rebate.
Eligible households, including those who already receive an existing NSW energy rebate, will automatically receive the $500 bill relief from the Energy Bill Relief Fund.
NSW currently allows households receiving the NSW Low Income Household Rebate to swap it for a free 3 kilowatt solar system.
The government estimates this could cut a household’s energy bills by up to $600 a year - which exceeds the $285 annual rebate. You will have to forgo the rebate for 10 years after your solar system is installed.
Victoria has an annual electricity concession, which takes 17.5 per cent off electricity usage and service costs. It is available to those with a Pensioner Concession Card, Health Care Card and Veterans’ Affairs Gold Card.
Eligible households can also receive a $250 energy rebate from the Energy Bill Relief Fund.
The government previously offered a $250 Power Saving Bonus for all households who compared energy offers, however, this has now closed.
Victoria offers rebates of up to $1,400 to go towards installing a solar power system. This is offered for existing homes, homes under construction and rental properties.
Victorians can also apply for an interest-free loan of up to $8,800 to help reduce their upfront costs.
There’s also a hot water rebate of up to $1,000 for eligible heat pumps and hot water systems.
In Queensland, eligible pensioners, seniors and other residents can claim a $372.20-per-year Queensland Electricity Rebate.
This year, the government is also giving residents additional cost-of-living rebates. Households will automatically receive these.
Vulnerable households can get a $700 rebate, which will appear as a $175 credit on your bill each quarter. All other Queensland households can get a $550 rebate on their electricity bills.
Unfortunately, there are no state-based solar rebates available in Queensland.
Eligible households on low or fixed incomes can apply for an energy bill concession of up to $263.15 per year.
The SA Concessions Energy Discount Offer gives you extra discounts if your retailer is Origin Energy. It includes a guaranteed 17 per cent off electricity usage and supply charges.
Eligible households can also get up to $500 from the Energy Relief Fund.
In Adelaide, the Sustainability Incentives Scheme provides solar rebates of up to $5,000 for concession card holders, landlords and tenants.
The rebate amount depends on the solar system. For example, for a 1.5 to 10 kilowatt solar system you can get a 20 per cent rebate up to $1,000.
Western Australia offers the Energy Concession Extension Scheme (ECES), which includes a yearly payment of $326.33. It is available to eligible households, including Pensioner Concession Card, Health Care Card, Seniors Health Card and Veterans’ Affairs Gold Card holders.
Recipients may also be able to get a Dependent Child Rebate of $343.14 for one child and $89.91 for each additional child. There is also an Air Conditioning Rebate of $68.34 per month for people living in eligible towns.
Households eligible for the ECES can get up to $500 in additional bill relief from the Energy Bill Relief Fund, while all other households can get up to $400 in bill relief.
There are no state-based solar rebates available in Western Australia.
Tasmania offers an annual electricity concession, which gives a daily discount of 172.434 cents per day to eligible customers.
This includes Services Australia or DVA Pensioner Concession Card, Services Australia Health Care Card and ImmiCard (Bridging Visa E) cardholders.
There’s also a heating allowance of $56 per year available to eligible pensioners.
Eligible households in Tasmania can get $250 in bill relief rebates per year over two years as part of the Energy Bill Relief Fund.
There are no state-based solar rebates available in Tasmania.
Members of the Northern Territory Concession Scheme can claim a concession of up to $1,200 per annum for electricity.
The scheme is open to eligible households, including those receiving the age pension, disability support pension, carer payment, parenting payment (single) and veterans’ affairs benefits.
Eligible households can also get $350 in bill relief from the Energy Relief Bill Fund.
The Northern Territory gives eligible homeowners a grant of up to $5,000 to buy and install solar PV systems with an eligible battery and inverter, or an eligible battery and inverter only if you already have solar panels installed.
Australian Capital Territory
The ACT government offers the Utilities Concession Scheme, which gives eligible households a rebate of up to $750 a year.
Residents may be eligible if they have a Pensioner Concession Card, Low Income Health Care Card, Health Care Card, ACT Service Access Card, and Veteran Gold Card.
Eligible households can get $175 in bill relief as part of the Energy Bill Relief Fund.
Residents’ bills should also be lower due to the ACT’s large-scale feed-in tariff scheme, which is expected to lower the average household bill by $152 per year.
The ACT’s Home Energy Support Program provides a rebate of 50 per cent of the cost of installing rooftop solar, up to $2,500.
It also provides a rebate of 50 per cent of the cost of installing reverse cycle heating and cooling, hot water heat pumps, electric stove tops and ovens, and ceiling insulation, up to $2,500.
It is open to those with a Pensioner Concession Card, Department of Veterans’ Affairs Gold Card or Australian Government Health Care Card.