The interesting thing about Australian utility rates.

I hadn’t realised this in the early years of my stay here, but have you ever wondered why utility rates vary so much across different geographical areas?

The answer is very simple, and comes down to one simple fact:

Infrastructure is built and owned by different private companies who decide on their own rates. These wholesale rates are then passed on to retail companies like AGL, who then mark it up and supply it to household consumers like us.

One very interesting point: the choice of retail supplier does not actually matter, since the actual electricity or gas supplier remains the same.

For example:

Citipower supplied the power in my old apartment building, which meant the quality of service gotten on the actual power remained the same regardless of provider. You do not pay more to get a stable service, neither does a cheaper retail provider get your electricity cut all the time.

The big difference for the consumer as you can see, comes down to the rate provided.

Another good feature that I like in a utility provider, is the early bird payment rebate. You pay your bill early, and you get a discount. It does make a difference in the monthly bills, and could take 10% off the total.

I’m with Lumo now, and their rates have been very competitive so far. The only snag was that three-fold meter read I had to sort out, but everything is rolling along now. Much thanks to Benson and Jason for their recommendation on Lumo last time, it’s definitely saved us a ton.

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