With the end of the NSW Solar Bonus Scheme on December 31, 2016, (60c or 20c/kWh Solar tariff), it is important to check what type of electricity meter you have to see if it needs replacing.
If you are on the 60c tariff it is very likely you have a gross meter, which means all the electricity your Solar PV generates goes out to the grid. You will soon be paid somewhere around 6c to 9c/kWh for this and then buy it back from the grid for around 26c/kWh – not good.
If you are on the 20c tariff you should have a net meter, which allows you to use your solar electricity in-house and sell the excess to the grid. With a net meter it is better to use the electricity than export it, so try and change your habits to run appliances during the day than evening (such as heaters, a/c, dishwashers, washing machines, dryers, and pool pumps).
For both tariffs, it is important to check with your retailer which meter you have. Electricity retailers are offering to change customer meters over to net meters.
You might want to think about opting for a smart meter at the same time. A smart meter is a net meter that records electricity usage every few minutes, can be read remotely, and provides up-to-date information about your energy consumption and costs. It needs mobile phone reception to work so check with your retailer.
Most retailers are offering no upfront costs for the smart meters.
You might want to also look into installation of batteries.
If you change your meter you don’t have to change your electricity supply contract, however a smart meter will allow you to choose from a wider range of contracts. Remember to shop around.