Energy suppliers using standing offers are facing mounting criticism across Australia. Loyal customers are being punished for not switching to different suppliers, missing out on discounts altogether.
Since 2015, wholesale electricity prices rose across the National Electricity Market (NEM) by 130 per cent. The price paid for electricity traded more than doubled, from about $8 billion to $18 billion. These increases are visible all over the country, with Aussie household bills increasing by up to 20 per cent in 2017 alone. 
Despite these findings, the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) has released a new report with shocking figures. In Victoria, an alarming 94% of customers are still sitting on a market offer, followed closely by South Australia on 89%, New South Wales at 83%, Queensland on 81% and the Australian Capital Territory on 68%.  If you live in Victoria, you’re probably one of the unlucky majority missing out on the opportunity to take $465 off your energy bill because you haven’t shopped around for a better deal.  Similar trends are happening all around Australia:
However, an ACCC report has discovered that more customers across Australia are becoming switched on, leaving standing offers behind for better deals across New South Wales, South Australia and South East Queensland. 
That’s why energy market regulators are calling for all Aussie energy customers to review their bills annually by comparing through a trusted comparator. This is because energy providers can change rates without informing their customers. Australian energy company, Electricity and Gas, has been sweeping the market—helping everyday Aussies save their hard-earned dollars by finding a better deal on energy.
Confusing pricing, sparse market competition and higher wholesale costs have caused electricity bills to surge by a staggering 60% over the last 10 years. Cheap introductory offers can also be used to lure people in before they find themselves hit with a big rate hike. The result? Loyal Australians trusting that their provider won’t rip them off get stuck with the worst rates.
Aussie households paid up to 29% more for their electricity than they did at same time in 2016, with Victorians shelling out the largest increase (up to $457 extra on their annual bills) followed by customers in New South Wales and South Australia.
Both sides of federal politics have promised to take action on energy bills in the lead-up to this year’s election. In October, Angus Taylor, the federal Energy Minister, outlined new measures to set a default offer price that would save millions of customers on standing offers up to $832 a year. That followed Opposition leader Bill Shorten’s announcement in August of plans for simpler bills with “capped” prices under a Labor government.
In Australia, heating and cooling is by far the greatest use of residential energy. Hot water and appliances each account for 21 per cent of average household usage. Cooking, refrigeration and lighting make up 6 per cent.
The “Your Home” guide, recently released by the Australian federal government for environmentally sustainable homes, states that 40 per cent of the average Australian household energy bill is spent on heating and cooling.
To save money during the warmer months, the guide recommends setting the air-conditioning to 24 degrees Celsius or higher. Each degree below uses about 10 per cent more energy. Using air-conditioning only when the temperature is above 30 degrees Celsius could save you up to $340 a year.
Electricity and Gas is encouraging all Aussies to ask for a better deal. The comparison service allows you access to no-markup policies from energy providers across Australia, making it easy to find the best deals in your area. With prices on the rise, they think Aussies deserve the chance to uncover potential savings. Click here to discover what Electricity and Gas could be saving you.
Here’s How You Do It:
Step 2: After answering a few questions, you will have the opportunity to compare quotes in your area and could be eligible for significant savings.
 Grattan Institute Report: https://grattan.edu.au/report/mostly-working/
 AEMC – National Household Electrcity Prices report: https://www.datocms-assets.com/6959/1545264238-2018-price-trends-combined-information-sheets.PDF
 AEMC – FINAL REPORT, 2018 Retail Energy Competition Review: https://www.datocms-assets.com/5684/1528864055-2018-retail-energy-competition-reviewfinal15junepublished.pdf
This article is opinion only and should not be taken as medical or financial advice. Check with a financial professional before making any decisions.