All electricity and gas customers in NSW can choose their retailer with licensed energy retailers offering to supply customers on a range of different market contracts. You can choose any licensed retailer you want, and any offer. This can involve signing a market contract with a new retailer or your existing retailer.
Under these market contracts, terms and conditions including pricing and other fees are subject to agreement between customers and retailers. Therefore, customers should shop around by comparing offers from retailers, and ensure they have the most appropriate and cost effective service for their needs.
The NSW Government operates NSW Energy Switch, which is a free online website to make it easier for customers to find the best prices. The Australian Government’s Australian Energy Regulator (AER) also operates a free electricity and gas on-line price comparison service Energy made Easy, which enables consumers to compare offers from different energy retailers to find the one that best meets their needs.
Customers who do not choose a plan are automatically moved onto their retailer’s default standing offer. The standing offer prices for electricity cannot exceed the default market offer prices that are set by the AER. Gas prices are not regulated.
IPART is required to monitor and report annually on the performance and competitiveness of the under section 234A of the National Energy Retail Law (NSW). See information about our latest review.
While each retailer's bills are set out differently, the first page of an energy bill usually shows a summary of your account, including the amount you paid for the previous billing period, the total new charges for the current billing period, any amount owing from the previous billing period and the date payment is due. The period the bill covers (usually expressed in days) may be on the first or second page of the bill.
The second page of the bill usually provides itemised information on the amount of electricity (expressed in KWh) or gas (expressed in MJ) you used during the billing period, the price you have been charged per kWh or MJ, and the price you have been charged per day for being connected (the 'service availability charge' or 'supply charge').
If you have a time-of-use meter for electricity and are being charged time-of-use tariffs, the itemised information will show the different prices you have been charged per kWh or MJ you used during peak, shoulder and off-peak periods. If you have an electric off peak hot water system, it will also show the price you have been charged per KWh for this 'controlled load' and may show a second 'service availability charge' or 'supply charge'.