Solar Bonus Scheme customers – act now to avoid bill shock

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The Solar Bonus Scheme will end on 31 December 2016 – that’s just over a month from now. This means 146,000 households across NSW which have been getting a feed-in tariff of either 60 or 20 cents for the electricity they sell back to the grid will get a much lower feed-in tariff or no tariff at all from 1 January 2017. Many customers will need to have their meter changed to receive a feed-in tariff and manage their electricity use in the new year.

Some of these customers haven’t received an electricity bill for several years, so there’s a very real chance that could be taken by surprise when they receive their first electricity bill next year.

The Energy & Water Ombudsman NSW (EWON) is concerned that customers are not prepared for the end of the Scheme. We urge people to get ready now by following the 5 steps below. Please share this information with your networks and help your clients, customers and maybe even yourself get ready for the end of the scheme!

  1. Check if you’re on the Solar Bonus Scheme by looking at your bill. If you’re receiving a 60 or 20 cent feed-in tariff you’re on the Scheme.
  2. Call your energy provider and ask if you need a new meter. Make sure you find out the following:
    • if they will charge you for a new meter if you need one
    • when they will install a new meter
    • what feed-in tariff they’re offering
    • what the contract terms will be – including additional charges or fees, or specific contract conditions.
  3. If you’re not sure you’re getting the best deal, compare your retailer’s offer to others at or talk to electricity retailers directly.

  4. Sign up to a new deal as soon as possible and before 31 December. If you do nothing, you will be worse off in the new year.

  5. Prepare for a higher electricity bill in the first quarter of next year – or in some cases your first bill in a long time. See our tips on saving energy and water around the home at