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Average Electricity Bill in Australia: Cost of Electricity and Gas by State

Average electricity costs

Knowing how your energy usage and costs compares to other Australian households can help you manage your electricity and gas to lower your energy bills. Discover how your households average electricity and gas costs compare to the rest of the country, as well as ways to be below average, by reading more below.

What do I pay on my energy bill? Electricity cost breakdown

Energy bills are divided into two costs: your daily supply charge, and your usage rates. If you live in a deregulated part of the country, your energy provider is the one to set these charges.

 Daily supply charge: A daily amount, in c/day, that is the cost to supply energy to your home. This is a fixed amount that doesn’t change, regardless of how much energy you use. This cost may be called a fixed charge, daily supply charge, or service charge. Daily supply charges range from 80c/day to over 120c/day.

 Usage rates: This is the amount you pay for the actual energy you use. For electricity this is shown as c/kWh, while for natural gas it is shown as either c/mJ or c/Unit (depending on where you live).

Usage rates and daily supply charges can be fixed or variable. If your energy plan is on a fixed rate, your usage rates and supply charges won’t change during the benefit period (usually 12 months). However, if your energy plan is variable rate, your energy provider is free to change your usage rates and supply charges when they want, with written notice to you.

Average electricity bill in Australia

The average cost of electricity in Australia varies drastically from state to state. While residents of New South Wales enjoy some of the lowest electricity costs in the country, those living in the Australian Capital Territory, and South Australia have some of the highest electricity costs. Despite the recent trend of increasing electricity costs across the country, new reports from the AEMC show that in the next few years, electricity prices should be reducing within the National Electricity Market as the government attempts to tackle inflating energy costs.

Average electricity bill by state

Below, you can find a breakdown of the average annual electricity bill for Australians state-by-state. These numbers are based on three-year trends reported by the AEMC in their Annual Electricity Price Trend Report for 2019.

Average annual electricity bill in Australia
State Average Electricity Bill (2018/2019)
South-East Queensland $1,425 / year
New South Wales $1,294 / year
Australia Capital Territory $1,937 / year
Tasmania $1,906 / year
Victoria $1,135 / year
South Australia $1,854 / year
Western Australia $1,600 / year

Source: AEMC Annual Electricity Price Trend Report 2019

Average electricity cost per kWh

Knowing the average cost of electricity in Australia per kWh can be a help when comparing and switching electricity providers. Average electricity usage rates are highest in South Australia, while lowest in South-East Queensland.

Average cost of electricity per kWh by state
State Average electricity usage rates per kWh
South-East Queensland 22.19c / kWh
New South Wales 25.463 / kWh
Victoria 23.558c / kWh
South Australia 35.74c / kWh

Source: Calculated average usage rates between leading electricity retailers within the NEM: AGL, Origin, EnergyAustralia, Red Energy, Alinta Energy, and Click Energy

Average daily supply charge

Your daily supply charge is how much your energy provider charges you to supply energy to your property. This is a fixed daily amount, in c/day, that is not affected by how much energy you use and applies to both electricity and gas supply. If you live in the National Electricity Market (Victoria, New South Wales, South East Queensland, and South Australia), your energy provider is free to set their own daily supply charge.

Average daily supply rate (electricity) by state
State Average daily supply rate
New South Wales 83c/day
South Australia 90.5c/day
Queensland 99.28c/day
Victoria 105.07c/day

Supply charges based on average rates for the six biggest energy providers in Australia: Origin Energy, AGL, EnergyAustralia, Click Energy, Red Energy, and Alinta Energy. Rates vary depending on location.

Average gas bill in Australia

Average gas bills in Australia vary widely, depending on a number of factors. What you use gas for (hot water, pool heating, total-home heating, and cooking for example), the size of your home, and how many people live there can all drive up your households average gas bills. As shown below, Western Australians enjoy some of the lowest gas costs per quarter, while those in Victoria and the ACT have some of the highest gas bills.

Average quarterly gas bill by state
State Average quarterly gas costs
Western Australia $152 / quarter
Queensland $204 / quarter
New South Wales $226 / quarter
South Australia $237 / quarter
Victoria $299 / quarter
ACT $303 / quarter

Source: Canstar Blue Average Gas Bill by State

Energy usage breakdown: Where is my energy going?

According to the SA Gov website, the average Australian home used almost 40% of their household’s energy consumption for heating and cooling. This includes both gas and electric heating, as well as air conditioning. In total, the average Australian household’s energy breakdown includes:

  • Heating and cooling: 40%
  • Water heating: 23%
  • Other appliances (laundry, entertainment): 14%
  • Fridges and freezers: 8%
  • Lighting: 7%
  • Cooking: 5%
  • Standby power: 3%

Ways to reduce your energy bills

Now that you are able to compare your average electricity and gas bill compared to other residential households in Australia, you might be wondering how you can reduce your energy consumption and save money off your next energy bills. Thankfully there are a lot of ways to reduce your energy bills, from small changes you can make today, to bigger, total-home renovations that will save you more in the long run.

 Unplug: Appliances such as hair dryers, fully-charged phones or computers, appliances with continuous displays, and home entertainment systems can still drain energy from your home even when you’re not using them. These “energy vampires” might only use a small amount of electricity at one time but multiple devices and appliances, over the course of a year, can cost you lots. Unplug devices and appliances you’re not using, and start saving more immediately

 Adjust the temperature: Keep your thermostat at 25 or 26 degrees in the summer, and 18 to 20 in the winter, to keep your energy bills low. Every additional degree of heating or cooling can add an additional 10% of your running costs to your electricity or gas bill.

 Use cold water: Changing your laundry habits to use more cold water, and less hot water, can reduce your average energy bill. Most day-to-day laundry doesn’t need hot water to get washed and clean, and if you hang-dry your clothes, rather than use an electric dryer, you’ll save even more.

 Insulate: Making sure your home is properly insulated to keep the cool air inside during the summer, and outside during the winter, can reduce your energy usage. Add draft stoppers to any door and window edges, as well as insulated curtains, or even hire a technician to come and add insulation to your home.

 Go energy efficient: Switching your appliances and light bulbs to energy efficient options can help reduce your average electricity bill drastically. Look for “eco” or “star-rated” appliances, and LED bulbs, to keep your home energy efficient.

 Switch: Shopping around for a new energy provider is a great way to reduce your electricity and gas bills. Selectra can help you find the best energy provider, no matter what you’re looking for, so you can switch providers today and save money tomorrow.

There are tons of things you can do, from small, every-day changes to drastic total-home improvements, which can help you reduce your energy consumption, and bills, and become below average (at least where electricity and gas costs are concerned).

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