This article about whether you are eligible for a Queensland electricity rebate has been provided by Rachael Platten, Tower Body Corporate.
Rising electricity prices have been the cost-of-living concern for thousands of Queenslanders, particularly for those on a fixed pension or other form of government assistance. To help those most affected, the Queensland Government has recently broadened the eligibility criteria for the electricity rebate.
In the course of updating clients about these new conditions, body corporate management company Tower Body Corporate learned that many who were already eligible for the rebate hadn’t been claiming it. So in this article, we’re going to help you figure out if you can claim it, then tell you how.
What is the Queensland Government Electricity Rebate?
The intention for the rebate is to support eligible households (see below) in meeting their costs of living – in this case, for electricity. Eligible households can receive a rebate off their electricity bill of up to $340.85 per year, including GST.
Who is eligible?
As we mentioned earlier, this list has recently grown to include anyone who holds one of these cards:
- Pensioner Concession Card
- Queensland Seniors’ Card
- Commonwealth Health Care Card
- ImmiCard (asylum-seeker status)
- Dept of Veterans’ Affairs Gold Card (and receive the War Widow/er Pension or special rate TPI Pension)
You also need to be the account holder, and either live alone or with:
- your partner
- other Pensioner Concession or Queensland Seniors Card holders
- others who receive an income support payment from Centrelink, the Family Assistance Office, or the Dept of Veterans’ Affairs and who don’t pay rent
- others who live with the cardholder to provide care and assistance, and who don’t pay rent.
If you live in a multi-unit residential building (e.g. apartment), you must also show that your electricity or reticulated natural gas is paid on the basis of metered consumption.
How do you apply for the electricity rebate?
The simplest way to apply is to get in touch with whoever sends you your bill. In the case of those who live in a strata complex, this might be the retailer themselves, your body corporate manager, or a specialist supplier. Whichever the case, the process is the same.
Step 1: Call your biller
The first step in the process is to give your biller a phone call – grab a copy of a recent electricity bill to get their number – and tell them you want to apply for the Queensland Government’s Electricity Rebate.
Step 2: Confirm your eligibility
Once you’re through to someone who can help, they’ll confirm your eligibility for the rebate, and help you complete your application. Make sure you have your concession card on hand, along with your 8-digit meter number (if this number isn’t shown on your electricity bill, your building manager may be able to help).
Step 3: Submit your application
Once you’ve completed your application with your biller, they’ll submit your application on your behalf. They’ll begin applying the appropriate rebate to your electricity bills straight away.
The Queensland Government also offers rebates on gas bills of up to $73.60, including GST, per household per year. All those who are eligible for the electricity rebate, excluding Commonwealth Health Care and ImmiCard holders, can apply for the Reticulated Natural Gas Rebate.
The process is the same as for claiming the Electricity Rebate: Get in touch with your gas retailer, making sure you’ve got a recent bill, and your concession card at the ready.
Help for body corporate committees
If your Scheme uses an embedded or private electricity network, then the body corporate is responsible for on-charging the power costs to residents. Most body corporates will engage the services of a utility billing company to do this for them.
At Tower Body Corporate, we administer billing for complexes throughout South East Queensland – a task that includes:
- making sure residents are aware of their eligibility for rebates
- ensuring those rebates are correctly applied
- spot checks to ensure that the body corporate is not losing revenue and that residents are being on-charged correctly.
This is a complimentary value added service for our clients.
If you’re a body corporate committee member, give your body corporate manager a call to ask if they can help.
And if you’d like a second opinion, give the team at Tower Body Corporate a call. We have nearly two decades’ experience in the energy and residential sectors, and ensure our clients are receiving all the rebates they are entitled to.
This post appears in Strata News #284
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This article is not intended to be personal advice and you should not rely on it as a substitute for any form of advice.
Have a question about applying for the Queensland electricity rebate or something to add to the article? Leave a comment below.