Energy stressed Victorians have saved $196,844 with Brotherhood of St Laurence program01 August 2019
People on low incomes who have trouble with their energy bills have saved hundreds of dollars a year, thanks to the Your Energy Broker program run by the Brotherhood of St Laurence.
“We have helped hundreds of people to switch and we’ve been surprised by how big the savings are”, says Damian Sullivan Head of Energy, Equity and Climate Change at the Brotherhood.
“On average, we are saving participants over $450 in the first year*. Most of the savings comes from getting better electricity and gas prices. People are also benefiting from energy retailer sign-up bonuses and the Victorian government’s $50 power saving bonus.”
“As a Victorian government-funded service we are able to pass on all the savings to low income and energy stressed households.”
Your Energy Broker has organised over 860 switches for energy stressed and low income Victorians. In total, we estimate participants have saved over $196,844 when retailer bonus payments are factored in with the average participant saving over $450 in the first year, when they switch gas and electricity.
“The program gives relief to households who are struggling and tired of paying too much for energy. We have found too many people are unsure how to navigate the market. Our Energy Brokers are able to guide people through the complexity and get the best deal. It’s a great way for people to lower their bills” explains Damian Sullivan.
Geoff Lawton, a pensioner from Roxburgh Park is expected to save $860 per year* after switching his gas and electricity to a cheaper provider.
Geoff believes energy companies make it hard for people to understand the best way to manage their bills. Gas heating is the major concern for Geoff and his wife, Maureen.
“I was struggling, my bills were over $2,000.” His energy provider had told him if he wanted a better deal he needed to go online and pay on time. “That was upsetting, I don’t know how to get online and it’s hard to pay on time. It’s disgusting how they treat pensioners.”
The Your Energy Broker is funded by the State Government and is a free, independent service for eligible households in the greater Melbourne and Shepparton area and is independent of energy companies.
Geoff plans to get the car serviced, pay insurance rates with the money he saves. The energy broker was very good and we are very happy. They explained everything clearly – we would recommend the program. It worked for us.”
*Savings estimates are based on outputs from the Victorian Government’s independent – Victorian Energy Compare website