This year has taken its toll on many Victorians who have been stuck in lockdown under tough government restrictions to help ‘flatten the curve’ of the coronavirus infection rate. All of us have been impacted in some way and felt the sting of the virus from a commercial perspective, whether that be due to deduction of work hours, closing of businesses, and as a result, loss of income. It’s been tough times for many, and to add insult to injury this additional time at home has led to expensive and often unpayable electricity bills. Below we outline the benefits of investing in solar power for your home during Covid-19.
Based on Natural Solar’s nationwide energy analysis conducted this year through live monitoring systems, the average Australian household increased its power usage by a massive 105 per cent in the Q1 period of this year, in comparison to Q1 in 2019.
In March 2019, these systems reported that the average household was using 513kWh monthly which equates to 16.5kWh each day. In March 2020, the average household used 1052kWh, and in April that figure reached 1094kWh which equates to 36.4kWh daily.
As a flow-on effect from Q1, power bills were expected to increase by more than double over the July, August, and September quarter due to the extra lockdown time at home. This means many households would have received a shock when opening their offensive Q3 power bill in September.
Australians can expect their power bills to hit the hip pocket hard
Chris Williams, the CEO and Founder of Natural Solar, said Australians can expect their power bills to hit the hip pocket hard. “This huge rise in electricity use from thousands of Natural Solar customers nationally means we anticipate power bills will spike from a quarterly average of $405.75 to over $800 per household for this Covid-19 affected period,” says Williams. He also predicts that some households could even see unprecedented bills of up to $1,800 per quarter.
It’s shocking to realise the word “unprecedented” not only comes to mind when thinking about the COVID-19 pandemic; it now also relates to our power bills.
However – there is hope when learning there are selected households who have and will continue to avoid this power bill spike, thanks to home solar and energy storage systems.
Let’s consider the initial investment for solar power versus the long-term reward.
An average solar system costs $5,000 to $7,000 and takes three to six years to make a return on the investment, while solar plus battery costs $15,000 to $16,000 and pays itself off in five and a half to seven and a half years.
Whilst this investment and timeframe might seem substantial, the key thing to remember is that solar and battery systems are usually expected to offset 80 to 90 percent of energy bills. That is a massive saving on your household electricity bills that you can pocket.
Plus, with the current Solar Homes Program rebate available for Victorian solar panel installations, the initial investment for your solar system will drop drastically.
The program provides eligible Victorian households with a rebate of up to 50% of the purchase cost to install solar PV panels. The rebate amount for eligible applicants is currently up to $2,225, currently half the value of an average 4kW solar panel system. You can read more about your eligibility for Government Rebates here.
Many Australians in other states are already taking advantage of government schemes or rebates as a cost-efficient strategy to install solar panels in their homes.
In April of this year, the NSW government announced a pilot project allowing homeowners in the Hunter and Newcastle regions to apply for interest-free loans to install solar. This saw a massive increase of calls and enquiries about the program by 1,500 per cent, with sales of solar systems increasing by 15 per cent.
South Australian residents are making the most of solar energy investments, with their state winning the race for renewable energy usage compared to the rest of the country. In fact, South Australia derives a massive 50 per cent of its energy from wind and solar power, with aims to reach 100 per cent by 2030.
This significant level of renewable energy usage is made possible by the South Australian government’s energy and environment schemes, in particular the Home Battery Power scheme. This scheme allows for all grid-connected residents to access government subsidies and low-interest loans to repay their solar energy investments for their households.
The trend of renewable energy has certainly seen an increasing spike over the past few years, as more people are discovering the benefits of solar power. Not only is solar power an important source of renewable energy with environmental benefits but it is also a no-brainer for households hoping to reduce their electricity bills.
If there is any time for Victorian residents to focus on reducing their overall household costs, it is now. A significant chunk of cost reduction could be achieved through minimal power bills. For the initial investment for solar energy in your home, you could truly benefit in the long-term by significant savings that will be well worth it.
For more information on our quality solar energy products and packages, please contact Erg Energy on 1300 374 786.