According to data from energy.gov.au, 4,444 ACT residents are fortunate to benefit from Australia’s lowest grid electricity price, and the most competitive electricity price is around 21c / kWh. Although this means that typical household (pre-solar) electricity bills in the Capital Territory are typically much lower than electricity bills in Queensland or New South Wales, it also means that you may need to shop to find the size/price of a solar system. A combination that fits your home. And the research that electricity prices are much higher than in some other states means that homes are struggling to use solar power.
How do you benefit (financially) from solar panels?
Solar home systems provide benefits in two main ways, both of which can lower your energy bills.
1. Compensate for your energy consumption
The primary way solar energy helps you solve energy costs is to reduce the amount you need to buy from electricity retailers. Usually, the price per kilowatt-hour is between 2040c. Solar energy systems are equipped with intelligent devices that can tell your appliances to use solar energy before “buying” power from the grid. This is often called “self-consumption” of your solar energy.
2. Excess Power Feeder Fee
Any excess power generated by the system can be sold to your power distributor at a price called a feeder fee. In some states (Western Australia and the Northern Territory), these rates are fixed, while in other states, it depends on the rates provided by your energy distributor; see our comparison table here. In Victoria, the minimum requirement per kilowatt-hour is 10.2 cents. Generally speaking, your speed is always lower than the rate at which you buy electricity.
Your ability to access power fees is also often limited to the maximum size of the solar system. For a complete description of what can happen in each state, read this guide. Since the price of incoming electricity is usually relatively low compared to the price you buy the power at (and rates have been dropping recently), it usually doesn’t make sense to use an extensive system unless you use a lot of energy. Maintaining a high “solar self-consumption” rate will help you optimize your return on investment.
Solar is profitable. As you can see, most Australians can install solar and pay for the system within 2-5 years. Or, through financing agreements or using mortgages, solar energy can generate positive funds from cash flow through the savings it generates on energy bills. Installing a high-quality solar power system will also increase the house’s value and increase the potential rental income because new owners or tenants can benefit from free energy on the roof. Significantly, installing solar energy can reduce the carbon footprint of households and help Australia transition to 100% renewable energy. This is an excellent opportunity for positive financial and environmental results.
Read our blog on Should I switch to solar panel energy?