Here are a few things you can do to personalise your payment options and make ticking them off your to-do list hassle-free.
Make them more frequent
When it comes to energy bills, payment schedules often default to quarterly billing – but this isn’t set in stone. Most providers will give you the option to be billed monthly instead, which can help you avoid larger lump sum payments.
Spread the cost
We all know cranking the heating in winter and the air con in summer tends to result in much higher bills, but bill smoothing can help you avoid these seasonal spikes.
The way it works is simple: year-long projections are made taking into consideration peak periods when heating, cooling and other seasonal factors come into play. Your projected energy consumption is usually based on your previous usage habits. Or, if you’re a new customer, a snapshot of similar households in your area can be taken to help calculate your payments.
These projections are then broken up into smaller, consistent payments to reduce the impact of summer and wintertime bills by smoothing them out across the year.
And they don’t always have to follow the traditional once-a-quarter template either — you can choose weekly, fortnightly or monthly instalments, whatever works best with your budget.
Set and forget
Setting up a direct debit means the cost of your bill will be automatically deducted from your nominated account or card on the due date. You’ll still be sent a bill, so you’ll know what’s due to come out and when, it just means you’ll have one less thing to think about.
It’s especially worthwhile sorting out if a pay on time discount is part of your plan’s benefits. Because with direct debit, your payment will always land on the due date, helping you to continually save on your bills.
Tap to pay
If you’d like the convenience of direct debit, but would prefer to stay in control of exactly what’s coming out of your account, try signing up for SMS Pay. You’ll receive an SMS with your bill amount a few days before it’s due. Then, all you need to do is reply ‘Pay’ before the due date and the amount will be deducted on the due date. Plus, if you’d prefer to pay your bill manually, you can. Your account won’t be debited if you don’t reply, so you can pay your way instead.
Track via the app
If you have a digital smart meter, you can get a better idea of what to expect when your bill lands by checking your energy usage via the AGL Energy App. The app can tap into your meter and give you daily updates on how much electricity you’ve used. You can also set up alerts when your usage starts to spike, so you can make an effort to rein things in before your bill arrives.
If you don’t have a smart meter, you can still view your historical usage in the app to familiarise yourself with your household’s seasonal trends.
Multi-tasking has never been easier now Amazon’s voice assistant Alexa has landed. You can use the AGL skill to ask her to check your current balance, your next bill date and (if you have a smart meter) your energy usage and estimated bill cost. She also makes it simple to activate different payment options – like switching to eBilling – so managing your payments is a breeze, even if you’ve got your hands full.
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Make your payments work for you
Know exactly what billing and payment options are available and how you could use them to make managing your budget easier.Find out more