For one reason or another, many people may now be struggling to pay energy or water bills. There’s help available!
We’re the Energy and Water Ombudsman NSW (EWON), a free and independent complaints-handling service for all electricity and gas customers in NSW, and some water customers.
If an energy or water bill is overdue and/or you receive a reminder notice, you should contact your provider as soon as possible to discuss the best options for you. Let your provider know your current situation, and what you can afford, and ask them for more time to pay your bill.
Set up a payment plan
A payment plan is a formal arrangement between you and your provider. It can help you avoid late payment fees and avoid disconnection of your supply. Offer to pay what you can afford and don’t be pressured into offering more.
Get on an affordability program
Affordability programs (sometimes referred to as hardship programs) are designed to protect you from disconnection and help you manage the arrears on your account by paying smaller amounts over a longer period. All energy companies must have an affordability program – so ask to be referred. They can also help by checking you are receiving government rebates and giving advice on how to reduce your bills.
Are you eligible for a rebate or EAPA vouchers?
You may be eligible for a rebate if you are a senior, on a low income, on life support or have other medical needs. You can ask your provider about the rebates available or find out more here.
Energy Account Payment Assistant (EAPA) vouchers are also available to help pay an electricity or gas bill. These can help in emergency situations, and you apply for these through an organisation which will assess your situation. Find out more about these vouchers here .
Most water providers also offer rebates and Sydney Water and Hunter Water offer additional support for private tenants and owners.
How to get in touch with us
Freecall: 1800 246 545* Mon – Fri, 9am – 5pm
Freepost: Reply Paid 86550 Sydney South NSW 1234
Interpreter: 131 450
TTY/Voice: 133 677
* If you are calling from a mobile phone, let us know and we will call you back.