What is 'Power of Choice'?

'Power of Choice' is a set of national changes to the energy market that are occurring from 1 December 2017. These changes are aimed at providing Australian electricity users with more control and choice over the way they use electricity.

Under these new changes, smart meters will be the standard new or replacement electricity meter.

With a smart meter, you'll be able to:

  • View what hours or days you use more energy—helping you identify ways to be more energy efficient.
  • Access more detailed electricity usage information online when you want, instead of waiting for your quarterly bill.
  • Manage your electricity account online with ease.

What this means for residents from 1 December 2017:

  • In the case that your electricity meter needs to be replaced, or if you need a new one installed, you'll receive a new smart meter.
  • Once you have a smart meter, you'll be able to view your electricity usage information online typically up until the previous day's activity. You'll need to log in to your free EpayPlus account to access this.
  • Having a smart meter also means your electricity tariffs may change. This means you'll be charged differently for the electricity that you use. You'll be informed of your tariffs once your new meter is installed, plus it will appear in your electricity bill.

What this means for builders from 1 December 2017:

  • Any new developments will need a smart meter installed. As your retailer, we'll be responsible for installing electricity meters instead of the distributor. 
  • If your development requires electricity meters you'll need to contact us online and complete your request for a new connection. For multi occupancy and medium density developments, please contact us on 13 14 93 or your dedicated ActewAGL business account manager who will assist with the procurement and installation process of your meters.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the key changes that will impact customers from 1 December 2017?

  • Smart meters will replace the traditional electricity meters.
  • If you have a meter enquiry, you'll need to contact us instead of the distributor.

What is a smart meter and its benefits?

  • A smart meter is an electricity meter with added functionality. Unlike the traditional meters many people have, which only read the amount of electricity used between readings every few months, smart meters digitally record data about energy consumption every 30 minutes. A smart meter can:
    • send data directly to the meter provider daily rather than manually collected every quarter
    • show you what hours or days you use more energy—helping you identify ways to be more energy efficient
    • give you feedback on your energy consumption as you go, making it easier to identify the source of high energy use.

When are smart meters available in the ACT and NSW?

  • Smart meters will be the standard new or replacement meter from 1 December 2017.

Are smart meters dangerous?

  • No. All smart meters are required to meet the required Australian Safety Standards.

How will a smart meter help me save money?

  • Once you have a smart meter, you'll have online access to more detailed information on your electricity usage. Using this information, you'll be able to understand how your behaviour on different days and times impacts your usage and ultimately your electricity bill.

I'm building a new home, what should I do?

  • From 1 December 2017, all meters installed in new properties will need to be a smart meter. As your retailer, ActewAGL will organise this installation with you.

Will everyone need a new smart meter from 1 December 2017?

  • No. Only customers who need a new or replacement meter will need a smart meter. This includes customers who are building a new home, undertaking additions or alterations (such as solar) or your existing meter has reached the end of its useful life.