As confirmed by the energy regulator earlier, the electricity price has increased up to a quarter from July in some states of Australia. (Hannam & Kolovos, 2023). This price hike in electricity is a matter of concern especially for low-income households.
Thus, in time of hardship both the Victorian and NSW Government offers you Annual Electricity Concessions & Benefits for Victoria, and Low Income Household Rebates for NSW to make necessary services affordable.
Of course, there are residential solar panels to help you out with increasing energy bills. But this article is going to be all about electricity concessions and its benefits.
In this article, you will not only be learning about annual electricity concessions and benefits but also about the low income household rebates that the State Governments offer to help meet the cost of living.
Annual Electricity Concession for Victorians
The Annual Electricity Concession is available all year round. It is available to eligible cardholders. It basically is a concession on domestic mains electricity usage and the service costs.
Households with extremely high power bills (more than $3,563.00 per year beginning 1 December 2022) must apply for the Excess electricity concession to continue receiving a bill reduction.
But first, let’s find out,
Who qualifies for a concession?
You need to be an electricity account holder with one of the following cards to qualify for the annual electricity concession:
- Health Care Card
- Pensioner Concession Card
- Veterans’ Affairs Gold Card
- Veterans’ Affairs Pensioner Concession Card
*Other conditions may apply.
FYI, the concessions cards are issued by the Commonwealth Government. If you want to apply for a concession card you can visit:
How to apply for the concession?
To obtain the Annual electricity concession, you must send your concession card information to your electricity retailer.
You can call your electricity retailer and provide your concession card information over the phone. You may also be able to apply through the website of your merchant.
Your retailer will verify your card information with Centrelink and apply the discount to your bill.
Furthermore, the concession is available if and only if the following conditions are met:
- The concession cardholder’s name is on the electricity account,
- The supply address is the cardholder’s domestic principal residence, and
- The electricity account is billed on a domestic tariff.
Range of Concessions for Victorians
Apart from the Annual Electricity Concession the Victorian Government offers you a range of concessions to make the cost of essential services affordable.
If you have the appropriate concession card, you might be able to apply for one of the concessions and enjoy the benefits.
- Excess Electricity Concession
- Excess Gas Concession
- Life Support Concession
- Medical Cooling Concession
- Non-mains Energy Concession
- Winter Gas Concession
- Controlled Load Electricity Concession
- Electricity Transfer Fee Waiver
- Service to Property Charge Concession
You must be wondering what is there for the people living in NSW. Worry not! The NSW Government came up with rebates to help low-income households. This NSW Low Income Household Rebate helps eligible concession cardholders pay their electricity bills.
Low Income Household Rebates for NSW
The NSW Government Low Income Household Rebate is $285 (minus GST) per year as of July 1, 2017. This rebate is applied to your electricity account on a daily basis. The amount of the rebate paid on each bill is determined by the number of days in the billing cycle.
This refund must be claimed on the basis of your primary place of residence.
The account holder must have one of the following concession cards to be eligible:
- Centrelink Pensioner Concession Card
- Centrelink Health Care Card
- Department of Veterans’ Affairs Pensioner Concession Card
- Department of Veterans’ Affairs Gold Card (for recipients of War Widow or War Widower, Totally and Permanently Incapacitated rate or Extreme Disablement Adjustment rate pensions)
Eligibility Criteria for the Residents in NSW
First of all, you have to have an electricity account for your home in NSW. The account and electricity bill must be in your name. You will need to hold one of the following:
Health Care Card issued by Services Australia
Department of Veterans’ Affairs Gold Card marked with either ‘War Widow’, ‘War Widower Pension’, ‘Totally and Permanently Incapacitated’ (TPI) or ‘Disability Pension’ (EDA).
Pensioner Concession Card issued by Services Australia or the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA)
How to Apply for the Low Income Household Rebates for NSW?
To apply for the low income household rebates for NSW, you will have to meet the eligibility requirements mentioned above. And then,
- Call your electricity retailer.
- Ask for the rebate to be applied to your account.
- Must provide your concession card details
- Confirm with your retailer that the rebate has been applied.
If you are wondering if there are any more rebates available for the people of NSW? Let me assure you that there is more.
We, Solar Emporium gave you the information on electricity concessions and rebates to help you understand the numerous incentives offered by the state government, as well as the eligibility requirements for receiving these concessions. Now it’s your responsibility to decide whether you are eligible for a concession.
Hannam, J & Kolovos, B. (2023, May 25). Electricity prices to rise by up to a quarter in parts of Australia after energy regulator issues market default decision. The Guardian. https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2023/may/25/power-bills-to-rise-by-up-to-a-quarter-in-parts-of-australia-after-regulator-issues-market-default-decision