Installing solar is a great way of saving money on your electricity bills. By having your own mini power station on your roof (and using this free power during the day), you’re buying less from the grid. But what about the solar energy your system generates that you don’t use? This can also help you save even more money, thanks to some generous Solar Feed-In Tariffs (FIT).
What are Solar Feed-In Tariffs?
When your solar system produces excess electricity, it doesn’t get wasted. Instead, you can sell it back to the grid. The rate you get is known as a FIT and is calculated per kilowatt-hour (kWh). FITs appear as credits on your electricity bill. If you have enough credits, this can go towards covering your night time electricity usage costs and potentially even your daily supply charge (some energy providers will send you a cheque each quarter if you’re in credit).
It Can Pay to Shop Around
How many credits you get per kWh depends on how much surplus solar electricity you export back to the grid, which state you live in, and which electricity provider you’re with. As electricity providers change their rates from time to time, it’s worth keeping an eye on their latest FITs. Then review your current FIT to check you’re still on a good deal.
While receiving a large FIT is definitely nice, it shouldn’t be your only consideration when it comes to choosing an energy provider. You also need to weigh up:
- their electricity rates
- their daily supply charges
- any terms and conditions such as ‘pay-on-time’ discounts or late payment fees that may impact you.
Not Sure Which FIT You’re On?
The information should be on your electricity bill (it’s often referred to as a ‘Solar Credit’). If it’s not, call your provider to find out. Some electricity plans don’t offer, which is pretty cheeky, given they on-sell your power for a profit, so, it’s worth switching if your current provider doesn’t pay anything.
Which Retailers Currently Offer the Best FITs?
2021 solar feed-in tariffs for systems
All rates accurate as of September 2021
What About Premium FITs?
Many years ago, early adopters of solar technology in Australia received extremely generous FITs. These premium or legacy rates could be as high as 60c/kWh. However, while current FITs are nowhere near these high levels anymore, this doesn’t mean that solar has stopped being a great investment.
In fact, the opposite has happened. Electricity bills have continued to skyrocket, while the cost of solar power systems has plummeted. The amount you save on your system plus the free energy it generates more than makes up for the reduction in FITs.
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