GUIDES & RESOURCES

Compare Electricity Providers in NSW

Looking to trim your electricity bills without giving up life’s little luxuries? It could be time to compare Electricity Providers in NSW. Luckily, we’ve got the info you need to be a comparison pro.
Couple comparing energy plans at home

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Updated 23/10/2023
What changed?
Updated information on rebates and concessions, included information on pricing and DMO
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Written by

Francis Taylor

Updated 23/10/2023

What changed?

Updated information on rebates and concessions, included information on pricing and DMO
Our aim is to help you make better informed decisions. That’s why iSelect’s content is produced in accordance with our fact-checking and editorial guidelines.

Find out more about how we make money.

View our Privacy Policy.

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Who are some of NSW’s Electricity Providers?

The names to know in electricity across NSW (as well as some of the ones we can help you compare) include:

Helpful Tip:

The energy market in New South Wales is deregulated. This means that Electricity Retailers have a little more wiggle room when it comes to setting their own prices and tariffs.1 But why does that matter to you?

It means you’re the one Energy Retailers want to impress! And that’s why you need to be ready to compare their offers. You want to look out for competitive prices along with advantageous price structures known as 'tariffs'. This can include time-of-use plans, where you get charged less when you use energy during 'off-peak' hours, like during the middle of the day or night. If you can find a plan that works with your schedule — where the off-peak hours line up with when you use the most energy — you might just end up saving a decent chunk of change.

What types of Electricity Plans can I get in NSW?

There are two types of electricity contracts in NSW: standard and market.

  • Standing offer contracts: With this type of contract, the price you pay for your electricity is typically set at the Default Market Offer (DMO) as the DMO is the highest amount a retailer can charge customers on a standing offer contract. This is a figure decided by the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) to keep customers safe from unfair prices, while understanding what it costs to get electricity to their home.2
     
  • Market offer contracts: Under a market contract, you might be able to negotiate rates with your retailer3 and they might even offer some exciting extras, like discounts.4 Have a close look over the terms and conditions before you sign up though to get the full story. For instance, some discounts may only be conditional, such as requiring you to pay your bill on time.5

How much does electricity cost in NSW?

Where you live in NSW can affect your electricity prices. This is because the prices have to reflect the costs of getting the electricity to your house. As a result, you’ll find NSW distributors have different network prices which need to be approved by the AER.6 These prices are then reflected in the DMO, along with other considerations to create a fair capping price for everyone.7 FYI: distributors are different from Electricity Retailers. Distributors make sure the electricity can get to your house, while retailers then sell the electricity to you.

In NSW, there are three distributors:

  • Ausgrid, who handles Sydney’s inner, northern and eastern metropolitan suburbs and surrounds8
  • Endeavour Energy, who looks after Sydney’s southern and western metropolitan areas, extending out to places like the Blue Mountains and Illawarra9
  • Essential Energy, who manages the rest of regional and country NSW10

So, what could your electricity prices look like? Well, as of the 1st of July 2023 through to the 30th of June 2024, the Default Market Offer for NSW residents looks like this:11

Distributor and Average Residential Annual Electricity Usage Average Annual Price for Residents Without Controlled Load
Ausgrid (3,911 kWh) $1,827
Endeavour (4,913 kWh) $2,228
Essential (4,613 kWh) $2,527

There’s a couple of things to keep in mind as you look at these prices. Firstly, these are for households who don’t have controlled load tariffs (these cover certain separately metered appliances, like electric hot water heaters and pool filters). If you have a controlled load tariff, pricing is a little different.12

You also may have spotted that the amount of electricity the final cost is based on changes between distributors. That usage number comes from the AER’s understanding of average electricity use in that area.13 To make it easier to compare with market offers in the same places, we’ve crunched some numbers and figured out what you’d be paying per kWh in each region.

Distributor Cost per kWh (rounded to two decimal places)
Ausgrid $0.47
Endeavour Energy $2.21
Essential Energy $1.83

If you aren’t sure which distributor you’re with, you can check your latest electricity bill or ask your Electricity Retailer.14

Back to the DMO at large, there’s been roughly a 20% increase in this price from 1 July 2022 to 1 July 2023.15 It makes sense given there’s been increased wholesale electricity costs across the board. Remember though, the DMO aims to balance these factors with making sure consumers like you get a fair deal. And you don’t have to go with a standing offer contract anyway if market offer ones are available.

In fact, Electricity Retailers may have market offers that are noticeably less than the DMO. That’s why the DMO is also a useful benchmark to compare any number of plans against to find your better-value offer.16

What should you keep in mind when comparing Electricity Providers in NSW?

Before you jump into comparing Energy Retailers and picking your new powered-up plan, take a moment to discover what to ask to give those Electricity Plans a thorough once-over.

Are there any discounts available?

Energy Retailers want you to pick them, so they’ll do what they can to stand out. As a result, it’s common for different retailers to offer incentives, like discounts or benefits. Some are guaranteed, like credit or a discount for signing up online. Others may hinge on actions you make throughout the plan, like paying on time or using direct debit. Be sure to go through the T’s and C’s to know exactly what you need to do to get those discounts.

What are the fees?

Energy Plans often come with fees for things like disconnecting and connecting your electricity when you move house. If you choose a contract with a fixed term, there can also be an exit fee if you leave the contract before the term runs out. This is why it’s worth reading your contract from start to finish before you sign up. Not only will it give you a good overview of the fees involved, it will also outline how much flexibility you have when it comes to switching retailers.

What are the billing and payment terms?

It’s important to know when your bills are expected and how to pay them. So, before you sign up, check what payment methods are accepted (e.g. direct debit, electronic transfer, through the post, Centrepay) and if there are any additional charges for the method you choose.

How do I switch Electricity Providers in NSW?

A lot of people stay with the same provider when they could potentially save money by switching. They might think it’s too hard or they don’t have the time to do the research. The good news is we can help. Just give us a call on 13 19 20 and we can help you compare from our range of plans and providers to make the switch.* You can even use our handy online comparison tool as you’re out and about during the day.

Can I get any government electricity rebates and discounts in NSW?

The NSW Government offers a number of rebates and concessions to help people pay their energy bills. We’ve put together a quick list of the ones that may be the most relevant to you, but you can always check for more on the NSW Government’s site.

  • Low Income Household Rebate: This annual rebate is a quarterly credit on your energy bill, totalling at most $285. You’ll need to meet the eligibility criteria though, which includes having the appropriate concession card.17
     
  • Family Energy Rebate: If you receive the Family Tax Benefit, you likely can apply for the NSW Family Energy Rebate. With it, you’ll get a credit of up to $180 on your energy bill.18
     
  • Life Support Energy Rebate: If you or a member of your household need to use certain approved medical equipment at home, like a ventilator, this rebate could help keep your electricity bills under control. It’s a credit on your power bill which will vary depending on the length of your billing period, and what types of and how many life-saving machines are in use.19
     
  • Medical Energy Rebate: If a medical practitioner has confirmed that you can’t self-regulate your body temperature, you may be eligible for this rebate. You’ll need to meet a few other criteria, but once you get to the other side of the paperwork, you’ll receive up to $285 a year in credit (paid quarterly) to cover additional energy needs, so you can stay comfortable.20
     
  • Seniors Energy Rebate: If you’re an independent retiree, this rebate may help you enjoy your golden years. Assuming you meet the full eligibility criteria, you’ll get $200 to help cover your power bills.21
     
  • Energy Accounts Payment Assistance: This scheme is a good one to know about in case you ever experience a short-term financial crisis or emergency that leaves you struggling to pay your electricity bill. Once your situation has been assessed, you’ll receive vouchers to help cover your bill.22

What do the rules for Electricity Retailers mean for me?

Back in 2018, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) made a series of suggestions to make electricity more affordable and comparing retailers a whole lot easier for NSW residents.23 This led to the DMO.

The idea is that it keeps prices fair for both Energy Retailers and consumers by setting a price limit when it comes to standing offer contracts. Plus, Electricity Retailers need to now show a comparison percentage on their market offers based on the DMO. This helps you see if the market offer is less or more than the DMO, as well as quickly compare a range of market offers from different retailers.24

How could iSelect help me save on energy?

Now could be your chance to get those power bills in order. Whether a standing or market offer is in your line of sight, switching Electricity Provider may be just the thing to relieve some of the cost-of-living pressure from your budget. Even better, iSelect makes finding a new Electricity Provider in NSW easy with our simple-to-use comparison tool and great range of providers to choose from. You can also give us a call on 13 19 20 to talk to one of our team and start comparing.*


Sources:
1 Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal - Retail prices
2 Australian Energy Regulator - DMO Electricity Price Safety Netp1
3 Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal - Choosing an energy supplier
4 Australian Competition and Consumer Commission - Electricity prices and plans
5 As above
6 Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal - 1 July 2023 electricity price increases
7 Australian Energy Regulator - DMO Electricity Price Safety Netp2
8 Australian Energy Regulator - Ausgrid
9 Australian Energy Regulator - Endeavour Energy
10 Australian Energy Regulator - Essential Energy
11 Australian Energy Regulator - Default market offer prices 2023–24 Final determination, p6
12 As above
13 As above, p9
14 Australian Energy Regulator - New South Wales
15 Australian Energy Regulator - Default market offer prices 2023–24 Final determinationp5
16 As above
17 energy.gov.au - Low Income Household Rebate
18 energy.gov.au - Family Energy Rebate
19 energy.gov.au - Life Support Energy Rebate
20 energy.gov.au - Medical Energy Rebate
21 energy.gov.au - Seniors energy rebate
22 energy.gov.au - Energy accounts payments assistance for vulnerable households
23 Australian Competition and Consumer Commission - ACCC releases blueprint to reduce electricity prices
24 energy.gov.au - Price safety net

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