Electricity usage and supply charges explained
There are two main types of electricity charges on your bill: usage and supply. These charges will be stated on your bill each period so you have a clear understanding of how much energy you are using and how much it costs.
Electricity Usage Charge
This is the bill for the amount of electricity your household actually consumes, and is sometimes called a variable charge or consumption charge. It is charged in cents per kilowatt hour (c/kWh). If you have a plan that breaks usage down into peak and off-peak times, you may have multiple sections of usage on your bill.
You can expect to see the following on your bill: type of charge, previous meter reading, current meter reading, and usage in kWh. If there is an ‘A’ next to the current reading then the number represents an actual reading. Either a meter reader visited your home or the reading was transmitted via smart meter. If there is an ‘E’ next to the current reading then your charges are based on an estimated reading. This happens if a meter reader isn’t able to visit your household or access the meter. Estimations are based on previous electricity usage in the household.
Electricity Supply Charge
Each household is charged for receiving access to electricity, regardless of how much is used. This is known as the supply charge or service charge. Think of this as an administrative fee charged by your electricity supplier to cover general maintenance to the infrastructure, including poles and wires. It appears on your bill charged in cents per day or as the total charge for the billing period. The amount of electricity you use in a billing period will have no effect on the supply charge.
Occasionally you may see other fees on your bill besides the standard charges. These may include:
- A payment processing fee (usually when paying by credit card)
- An early termination fee
- An establishment fee for new customers
- Late payment fee
If you have any questions about the fees and charges that appear on your account, you can speak to a consultant at ElectricityandGas.com.au to better understand them.