Queenslanders paying $200 too much on energy bills

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South-East Queensland households stuck on standing offer electricity contracts are paying an average of $200 a year more than they need to.

Research conducted by Canstar Blue has shown Queenslanders could save big bucks just by switching from a standing offer to a market offer contract, even with the same electricity retailer.

The latest figures from the Australian Energy Regulator showed that one in four South-East Queensland households (26%) are still on standing offer electricity contracts.

“If you think you’re paying over the odds, you need to contact your retailer and ask to be put on their cheapest market offer,” said Canstar Blue’s Simon Downes.

“The energy retailers will be more than happy to keep you sitting there paying more than you need to, so you need to be proactive and ask the question. If you don’t ask, you simply won’t get.

“The saddest thing is that the consumers stuck on standing offer electricity plans are likely to be elderly people, or those who don’t understand what options are available to them.”

The research showed that EnergyAustralia customers stand to save the most by switching from the retailer’s standing offer to its market Flexi Saver offer, provided they meet the conditions of the 16 per cent pay on time discount.

Doing this would save them $285 a year. AGL and Lumo Energy customers on standing offers also stand to save more than $200.

Customers of all six electricity retailers compared stand to save by switching from standing offers to market offers with the same provider, if they meet the conditions of their respective discounts.

However, two market offers reviewed – from Dodo Power & Gas and Simply Energy – were found to have higher rates than their respective standing offers before discounts are applied.

“Queensland may not be the most competitive energy market, but there are good savings to be had if you do your homework,” said Mr Downes.

More research by Canstar Blue found New South Wales households are also spending up to $400 a year more than they need to on their electricity bills.

Customers of all the big energy retailers could save hundreds by switching from their provider’s standard offer to the cheapest available market contract.