What’s the best solar feed-in tariff?
As a householder with solar panels, you probably already know that using as much of your own solar generation as possible is the best way to save money on your electricity. But, if you’re like most people, it’s really difficult to use all your solar electricity.
So, the next best way to save money is to find the best option for selling your extra solar electricity back to the grid.
Electricity retailers will pay you a solar feed-in tariff for any excess solar you send into or “export” to the grid. At the moment, electricity retailers are offering a broad range of solar feed-in-tariff rates, its generally anywhere from 3 to 18 cents per kilowatt hour (c/kWh), or possibly even more if you qualify for one of the bonus schemes. But, if you’re looking to keep your overall electricity costs down, the value of the solar feed-in tariff isn’t the only factor to consider when choosing an electricity plan .
Once you have a solar system installed your total electricity costs will be determined by three sets of charges:
- Electricity usage supplied from the grid, plus
- Daily supply charge for being connected to the grid, offset by
- Solar electricity exported to the grid and reimbursed by your retailer
Therefore it’s also really important to look at the electricity rates and daily supply charge in conjunction with the solar feed in tariff rate offered by the retailer.
In this post, we’ll explain how to assess solar feed-in tariffs and provide an overview of other factors you should consider when evaluating solar electricity plans.
Key factors explained
Daily supply charge - the daily supply charge is the amount you are charged to stay connected to the electricity grid. It doesn’t change no matter how little or how much energy you use. Check out our blog “How to read your electricity bill” to find the daily supply charge you are currently paying to your electricity provider.
Variable usage charges/rates - your usage charges depend on how much electricity you use (in kilowatt-hours). They’re calculated in cents per kilowatt-hour (c/kWh). Your rates may vary throughout the day depending on whether you are on a time of use energy plan or a single (flat) rate plan.
Solar feed-in tariff - this is the amount you get paid for selling your excess solar into the grid (c/kWh).
Incentives / discounts - some retailers offer incentives such as a new customer bill credit or loyalty programs or pay-on-time or direct debit discounts.
Tips for getting best solar feed-in tariff
The key takeaway is that a high solar feed-in tariff does not always equate a smaller electricity bill. You need to look at all the rates and charges in an electricity plan, then review your own electricity usage and solar exports, in order to find the best solar feed in tariff plan for your household.