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2019 Price changes

Will there be changes to residential and business electricity prices?
Yes, the State Government has recently announced price changes to regulated residential and business retail tariffs, including some price decreases as well as increases. For the full rundown, you can view the pricing tables at synergy.net.au/pricechanges
When will these price changes come into effect?
The changes to Synergy’s tariffs will take effect on 1 July 2019. All new tariff rates are published at synergy.net.au/pricechanges
Would roof-top solar reduce my bill?

You could see savings with your electricity bill if you have solar panels installed, but how much you could save will depend on how you use electricity. If you’re still running a lot of heavy appliances at night, your solar power won’t help to power those appliances and you won’t be getting the most out of your solar panels.

There’s plenty of small changes you can make to the way you use energy to get the most out of your solar panels. For example:

  • Do your laundry during the day when your solar panels are receiving maximum sunlight, especially between 10am and 2pm.
  • Keep energy usage to a minimum at night if possible.
  • Use a slow-cooker to cook dinner during the day.
  • Charge your phone, laptops and other devices during the day.
Why are these prices changing?

It’s a fair question. Electricity retail tariffs are determined by the State Government, which reviews changes in the costs of providing electricity and sets the tariffs each year. We’ll continue to put downward pressure on prices by ensuring energy supply costs are efficient.

In relation to fees, Synergy has been able to reduce some, while keeping others flat. In areas where fees have gone up, some of these fees are directly incurred by Synergy. In these cases, we will only pass on the cost to provide the relevant service to you. For example, the paper bill fee has been reduced because we were able to secure a cheaper price to provide that service. We’ll continue to pass on savings in fees to customers wherever we can.

We’re always working to help our customers, whatever circumstances they are in, and any pricing changes are carefully considered. If times get really tough, we offer customers additional support through our ‘Keeping Connected’ program. Whatever the reason, you can get help with your bill by visiting synergy.net.au/needhelp at any time. 

 
How do we compare to other states in Australia?

The vast distance and separation from the rest of Australia’s energy network means WA’s grids are isolated from the National Electricity Market, which controls most of Australia’s energy output and pricing. We have very different market structures, but we also have flexibility to innovate and trial energy solutions. 

These market differences make comparing prices difficult. However, in 2018/19 an average consumption level customer (approximately 5,000 units per year) in WA would have the second lowest annual bill in Australia, when WA’s residential tariff is compared to default or benchmark tariffs in other states and territories.

Will my concession or rebate be increased?

The State Government has announced there will be an increase to the WA Government Energy Assistance payment from $300.00 to $305.25, which is an increase of 1.75%. All other concession rebates have also been increased by 1.75% to reflect the increase in the A1 tariff. To find out if you are eligible for a concession or rebate, visit synergy.net.au/concessions

How do retail tariff changes impact on solar energy generated by my home?
The best use of your solar investment is to use the electricity you generate from your solar panels in your own home. For example, running your washing machine and pool pump during the daytime while your panels are generating. As retail tariffs increase, so too does the saving as a result of your solar investment.

The residential Renewable Energy Buyback Scheme (REBS) rate is currently 7.135 cents per kWh, the Feed-in-Tariff (FIT) payments remain unchanged in 2019/20.
 
How can Synergy help me manage my bill?

We get it. Life is full of unexpected moments, some of which can create more stress than others. When your bills start piling up due to changes in circumstances, income or illness, we want you to get in touch with us to help with your energy payments.

Synergy has plenty of advice and ways to help you manage your energy bill, from giving you extra time to pay, to helping you create a payment plan. We also work closely with a large number of organisations and consumer representatives, from social services and the Energy and Water Ombudsman, through to financial and legal service providers.

If you’re struggling to pay your bill, please get in touch with us so we can help here synergy.net.au/needhelp 

 
What is the ‘Keeping Connected’ Program and how do I access this?

If you are struggling with financial hardship, you may qualify for our Keeping Connected’ program and have access to one of our financial Case Managers. For eligible customers, they will work with you to tailor assistance to your needs, and can give you guidance on managing your bill, provide incentives to help you maintain agreed payment plans, and offer advice on how you can reduce your electricity usage.  If you have a life-threatening illness or are experiencing long-term unemployment, you may be able to participate in the ‘Power on Payment’ program.

Case Managers can also provide you with help to apply for the Western Australian Government’s Hardship Utility Grant Scheme

For more information on payment planning, concession cards, rebates and how we can support you, visit synergy.net.au/needhelp 

 

Is there a change to the paper bill fee?

There has been a slight reduction in the paper bill fee. Synergy incurs a delivery cost each time a bill is sent to a customer, and we try to keep these costs as low as possible, which is passed on to customers.

Currently, 46% of people who would otherwise pay the paper-based fee are exempt. All other customers can choose to avoid this feed by switching to paperless billing.

You are exempt from this fee if you are;

  • An eligible concession card holder
  • A residential customer aged 65 years and over
  • Currently identified as being in hardship
Why is there an Urgent Reconnection Fee?
Urgent reconnections will continue to be provided FREE OF CHARGE to customers requesting an urgent reconnection in life-support equipment situations. For customers who rely on life-support equipment at their property, and can provide medical confirmation of such use, no fee will apply.

The fee will apply, however, if a customer requests an urgent reconnection due to life-support equipment, but does not provide the required supporting documentation within 3 months. A fee of $213.76 will then be charged to those customers. 

More details about life support equipment and how you can register as a life support customer can be found here. Knowing about your medical equipment means we can advise the network operator, Western Power, so they can prioritise restoring the power your life-support equipment depends on.

To see if you’re eligible, and find out more about the process, you can read the Customer Charter Brochure here
Why do we now charge an over the counter fee?

There has been no increase to the over-the-counter fee of $2.10. Australia Post charges Synergy this amount each time customers pay their Synergy bills at Australia Post. Impacted customers can choose to avoid this fee by switching to Direct Debit. We can waive this fee for customers who are;

             An eligible concession card holder

             A residential customer aged 65 years and over

             Currently identified as being in hardship


Why do electricity retail tariffs change?
The State Government undertakes annual electricity retail tariff reviews to account for any changes in the components that make up the tariff rates. These include electricity generation, transport, regulatory costs as well as the costs associated with maintaining your account. The State Government makes their decision on electricity retail tariff changes based on this review.
Read more
How is Synergy assisting customers to manage these increases?

Synergy’s website now has a range of My Account energy management tools, giving you more control of your energy than ever before.

You can compare your energy usage with similar homes, access popular energy saving tips, track your energy usage, view your current billing information or billing history and you can access  secure payment options from any device (computer, mobile, tablet), whenever it suits you. To register for My Account visit synergy.net.au/myaccount or for great energy efficiency tips visit synergy.net.au/tips

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If I pay more than one bill over the counter, will I be charged one Over the counter fee, or more?

Customers will be charged $2.10 for each transaction that is paid over the counter at the Australia Post.

For example, if you pay multiple Synergy bills over the counter, you’ll pay the $2.10 Over the counter fee in relation to each bill.

Similarly, if you have one Synergy bill and make multiple visits to Australia Post to pay portions of that bill, you’ll be charged $2.10 per payment towards your that bill.

Why is Synergy changing prices again?
The setting of electricity retail tariffs is determined by the State Government as part of the annual State budget process.
Read more

New Electricity Tariff Prices

The state government recently announced changes to regulated electricity retail tariffs from 1 July 2019.

Learn more

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