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If you’re already comparing offers from different retailers, that’s definitely a good start to get those energy bills under control. But did you know that if you live in New South Wales, you might be able to get some extra help thanks to the Family Energy Rebate.
The Family Energy Rebate can give you a bit of extra money to pay your electricity bill — so long as you have dependent children and meet a few other criteria. The electricity rebate comes in the form of a credit on your bill.2
How much you can get will depend on how you get your electricity. For instance:
If you’re not sure if you are a direct or on-supply customer, get in touch with the Electricity Provider listed on your bill.
The NSW Family Energy Rebate is a rebate you can access every financial year as long as you remain eligible. You can learn when applications open and close at the Service NSW website.
However, generally, you have most of the financial year to submit your application. This means you’ll have plenty of time to get all the necessary details together and fill out the application form. However, sooner is always better to be sure you don’t miss out.
First off, you’ll need to be a NSW resident to be eligible for the Family Energy Rebate. You’ll then need to meet the following criteria:5, 6
Whether you are a direct or on-supply customer, you need to meet all of the above eligibility criteria to receive the Family Energy Rebate.9, 10 If you’re not sure whether you meet all of these, speaking to Service NSW may help you to get a clearer picture.
Good news! The application process is actually pretty straightforward. There’s just a bit of information and a few documents you’ll need to gather beforehand. Here’s a quick run-down of what you’ll need:11, 12
If you are an on-supply customer, you will also need to include a printed copy of your most recent energy bill. This needs to include your name and address, along with the most recent meter reading dates for your residence. These dates should be after 1 July for the current financial year but be no more than 3 months old.13
Direct customers: don’t forget your unique National Meter Identifier!14 It’s also known as your NMI number. You can usually find these 10 or more digits on your electricity bill.15 However, if you can’t find your NMI number on the bill, just give your Electricity Retailer a call as they’ll have it linked to your account.
How you submit your application will depend on whether you are a direct or on-supply customer.
If your application for the NSW Family Energy Rebate has been rejected, there are a few things you can check.
One obvious reason your application might get denied is that you just don’t meet the eligibility criteria. Remember, you need to meet all of the criteria listed above, not just some.
If you do not meet the criteria for the NSW Family Energy Rebate, you may still be able to apply for other financial assistance or rebates to help cover your energy costs. Be sure to check the NSW Government website to see if there is another rebate that you could get. Additionally, you can view the available energy concessions and rebates offered in Australia via energy.gov.au.
To be eligible for the NSW Family Energy Rebate, you need to receive the Family Tax Benefit. Importantly, your FTB entitlement needs to be finalised via Centrelink. For this to happen, you need to lodge your tax return for the previous financial year. If you don’t need to complete a tax return for the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), you’ll need to let Services Australia know this; otherwise your FTB will not be finalised.17, 18
Once you’ve lodged your tax return, the ATO will forward the relevant information to Services Australia within about 28 days from when you received your ATO notice of assessment.19 Once it has been processed, you will receive a confirmation letter from Services Australia detailing your FTB outcome either through myGov or the post.20 You can also track if your FTB has been finalised through the Express Plus Centrelink mobile app.21
Even if you do meet all the eligibility criteria, it is possible for your application to be denied. This can occur if the name on your rebate application is not the same as the name on your energy account and attached to your Customer Reference Number (CRN) used by Services Australia. This might be the case if you have recently changed your name, or you live in a multi-generational or shared household where another person is the primary energy account holder.
So, to save yourself hassle and stress, be sure that the name attached to your CRN and on both your energy account and application all match. If you do spot that there is a name mismatch, speak to the relevant party to have it changed, whether it’s your Energy Provider or Services Australia.
If you cannot receive the NSW Family Energy Rebate or you need further financial assistance, there are a few other rebates you can look at.
The Low Income Household Rebate is available for certain residents in NSW. It can give direct customers a credit of up to $285 on their electricity bill per year22 and on-supply customers a lump sum of up to $313.50.23
It’s basically a rebate for people who hold the following concession cards issued by Services Australia or the Department of Veterans’ Affairs:24, 25
If you receive this rebate, you might also be able to get part of the NSW Family Energy Rebate too. For direct customers, you can get an additional credit of up to $2026 for on-supply customers, it’s a lump sum of up to $22.27
If you are a self-funded retiree, you may be eligible for the NSW Seniors Energy Rebate. This is a $200 payment per household each financial year.28 It can be applied for your main place of residence as long as you meet all of the below criteria:29
If you and another member of the household are eligible for the NSW Seniors Energy Rebate, only one of you can apply for it.30
If you are dealing with a short-term financial crisis or emergency, you may be able to access the Energy Accounts Payment Assistance scheme (EAPA).31 To do so, you will need to get in touch with an EAPA provider, such as the NSW Government or community organisations like Anglicare and the Wesley Mission.32 You can find a provider near you here.
Once the EAPA provider has assessed your circumstances and found you eligible, they can then provide you with one or multiple $50 EAPA vouchers. These are sent electronically to your retailer and added as credit to your account.33
Unfortunately, this scheme is not available for on-supply or embedded network customers.34 Additionally, it is only a one-off payment.35
You can find more information about these rebates and other financial assistance options for energy bills in NSW here.
Did you know?
If your application for the NSW Family Energy Rebate is successful, you will automatically also receive a one-time payment of $500 for the 2023–2024 financial year.36 This payment comes from the National Energy Bill Relief Fund. It’s an initiative from the Federal Government that aims to provide up to $3 billion in electricity bill relief for eligible households and small businesses.37 Of course, because it’s a one-time thing, you can only receive the rebate once. You may have already applied for it or it may have already been processed as part of other rebates or concessions you get. You can learn more about the fund and if you are eligible here.
Now comes the not-so-great news. Yes, you will need to apply for the NSW Family Energy Rebate every year if you want to keep getting it. Unfortunately, it’s not something that renews itself annually. This is because your eligibility could change by the time the new financial year rolls around. You could get a new job, receive a pay rise or find yourself in a new household situation.
When it comes to saving on energy, concessions and rebates can certainly be a big help. But comparing different Energy Retailers might also help you find suitable plans that provide better ongoing value than what your existing Energy Plan offers.
iSelect is here to make this process a little easier. You can weigh up Energy Plans from a whole range of retailers by using our online comparison tool.* It’s a quick and easy way to check out your options! So give it a go or give us a bell on 13 19 20. Our friendly team is always happy to lend a hand!
1 iSelect commissioned i-Link Research to conduct a national online survey between 28 April and 3 May 2023. The sample is n=1,000 Australians 18+ years, with data weighted to represent the population by age, state and gender, and is representative of all Australian adults 18+.
2 energy.gov.au - Family energy rebate
3 Service NSW - Apply for the NSW Family Energy Rebate (retail customers)
4 Service NSW - Apply for the NSW Family Energy Rebate (on supply customers)
5 Service NSW - Apply for the NSW Family Energy Rebate (retail customers)
6 Service NSW - Apply for the NSW Family Energy Rebate (on supply customers)
7 As above
8 Service NSW - Apply for the NSW Family Energy Rebate (retail customers)
9 As above
10 Service NSW - Apply for the NSW Family Energy Rebate (on supply customers)
11 Service NSW - Apply for the NSW Family Energy Rebate (retail customers)
12 Service NSW - Apply for the NSW Family Energy Rebate (on supply customers)
13 As above
14 NSW Government - NSW Family Energy Rebate APPLICATION FORM 2023/24
15 Energy Made Easy - Finding your NMI
16 Service NSW - Apply for the NSW Family Energy Rebate (on supply customers)
17 As above
18 NSW Services - Apply for the NSW Family Energy Rebate (retail customers)
19 Services Australia - When we balance your Family Tax Benefit
20 Services Australia - Understanding your FTB balancing outcome
21 Services Australia - Track the progress of your FTB balancing
22 Service NSW - Apply for the NSW Low Income Household Rebate (retail customers)
23 Service NSW - Apply for the NSW Low Income Household Rebate (on-supply customers)
24 Service NSW - Apply for the NSW Low Income Household Rebate (retail customers)
25 Service NSW - Apply for the NSW Low Income Household Rebate (on-supply customers)
26 Service NSW - Apply for the NSW Family Energy Rebate (retail customers)
27 Service NSW - Apply for the NSW Family Energy Rebate (on supply customers)
28 Service NSW - Apply for the Seniors Energy Rebate
29 As above
30 As above
31 NSW Climate and Energy Action - Find an energy rebate
32 NSW Climate and Energy Action - Help for households facing energy bill stress
33 As above
34 As above
35 As above
36 energy.gov.au - Energy bill relief for households, NSW
37 Commonwealth of Australia - Delivering cost-of-living relief