We spend our days making sure our customers have the best electricity and gas plans for their home, and our one piece of advice to make it happen? Compare your bills!
You should be comparing bills every 12 months to make sure you always have the cheap plans with the latest discounts and special offers, but for many people, this conjures images of timely phone calls and delays with connections.
To put your mind at ease, read on to find out how long it takes to connect electricity when you make the decision to switch.
On this page:
- Connect electricity: an overview
- How to compare electricity plans
- When to tell your current provider
- Book a connection date
- Help, I’ve run out of time! Urgent and same-day connections.
Connect electricity: an overview
If you have decided it’s time to compare your bills to find the cheap electricity plan for your home, the good news is, it should be pretty easy!
A new connection can be done in under a week, however, we recommend giving yourself and your provider as much time as possible to avoid any stress caused by unforeseen delays.
If your contract with your current provider is coming to an end, you want to make sure you have a new plan in place, either with them or a new provider, to avoid being rolled on to their more expensive standing offer.
The timeline below will give you plenty of time to connect your electricity without a hitch.
|4 weeks before your deadline (e.g. contract expiring, moving home)
|Compare electricity and gas plans – call CheapBills or compare retailers online.
|Pay outstanding bills – your new provider will check your credit rating, so this will help the process go smoothly.
|3 weeks before your deadline
|Contact your current provider to book your disconnection, if switching providers (make sure you have a new plan in place first).
|If you need a new meter or meter alteration for your new plan, book a date with your new electricity provider. This will apply if you are going to a Time of Use (ToU) or controlled load tariff and do not currently have a smart meter.
|2 weeks before your deadline
|Sign up for a plan with your new electricity provider – contact CheapBills or sign up online.
|Book an electricity connection date – make sure you give at least 5 business days’ notice, taking into account public holidays.
How to compare electricity plans
Comparing electricity plans is the most important step in the whole process (in our opinion!) It’s the one that will save you all the money, so that’s why it’s first on our list.
If you are switching electricity and gas in your current home, you probably have a good idea of your home’s energy needs, so you should look for a plan to match.
If you are moving home, it can be a bit trickier to know what your energy usage will look like. However, you should still take the time to consider the following:
- The size of your home
- The number of regular residents
- Home office requirements
- Heating and cooling systems
- Hot water system (electric, gas, or solar hot water)
- Solar power (solar panels and solar batteries or battery systems)
- Type of meter (is there a smart meter installed?)
- Special requirements e.g. swimming pool, underfloor heating, electric vehicle.
This might sound like an overload of things to think about, especially when you consider that each plan on the market will excel in some areas more than others. This makes finding a cheap electricity and gas plan for your home a bit of a minefield!
Using a comparison tool like CheapBills makes the process hassle-free. One of our experts will consider your unique energy needs and match you to the perfect plan from our panel of preferred suppliers. We’ll even take care of moving home electricity to the new connection for you!
Tell your current provider
Even if you are on a fixed-term contract with your current provider, unless you tell them that you are leaving, they will automatically roll you onto their standing offer plan.
Usually, they will contact you before this happens, but not always, so don’t take the risk! Once you have provided notice, it is their job to issue a final bill and disconnect you on the requested date.
If you are moving home, you should book the disconnection for the day after you move out, so you’re not left in the dark on the day you move. You should also provide the retailer with a forwarding address to send your final bill.
To calculate your final bill, the provider will perform a meter read on your last day with them. If you have a smart meter, this will be done remotely through the digital data sent directly from your meter. If you have an older style analog meter, they will send a technician to take a reading manually.
To avoid any issues with your final bill, you should also take a reading and a photo of the meter yourself on the disconnection date. This will be useful if you think your final bill is too high.
Book a connection date
If you have found a new plan that you are happy with, the next step is to book a date to connect electricity and gas with your new provider. Most retailers request 5 business days’ notice to connect your new account.
If you are moving house, you should check that the existing connection is in good working order. If the property is brand new or hasn’t been connected for a while, there might be extra steps you need to take.
If you need a new meter, this will also take additional time, usually up to 15 days for a new meter, or 6 days for an alternation. Make sure you get in touch with CheapBills in plenty of time so we can make sure you are connected on your chosen date.
To prepare for your new connection, make sure the main switch is turned off if a technician is required to do a site visit. Otherwise, the changeover will happen with no interruption to your service, and you shouldn’t even notice it has happened!
If you do experience any outages or other issues, call CheapBills immediately for advice. You can read more hints and tips to make sure your connection goes smoothly here.
Help, I’ve run out of time! Urgent and same-day connections.
We understand that the chaos of life can get in the way of even our best-laid plans. If you have found yourself running out of time to arrange a new electricity connection, there are things we can do to help!
If you are moving home, we can arrange a same-day connection with your new retailer, however, this does come with an extra fee from the distributor of up to $400, so it’s best to avoid it if you can. If you need an urgent connection, call us immediately at 1300 786 045 so we can get you set up.
If you are switching providers in your current home for a cheaper plan, you will simply be rolled onto your current provider’s standing offer. These plans are not fixed-term, so you are free to move to a new provider when you are ready. Don’t leave it too long though, because in the meantime you will be missing out on some big savings!
If you haven’t compared your bills in over 12 months, or if you have a move coming up, call CheapBills today to compare energy plans and avoid a last-minute rush! Our 100% free comparison service will find you the cheap plan for your electricity and gas, compare internet plans and Pay TV to make sure you’re not paying more than you need to.
Call us on 1300 786 045 or enter your details online.