23 April 2021

Is the TECT rebate worthwhile?

Posted in Blog

Clean Energy Partners, blog post - Is the TECT rebate worthwhile?

Should I stay with Trustpower to receive the TECT rebate?

Tauranga and Western Bay consumers have an extra dimension to consider when reviewing power bill costs with the TECT rebate.

We dip our toe into the murky pool of retailer charges

For low and high power users there appears a clearer path to base a strategy, but average use consumers remain on the cusp of uncertainty.

Is the TECT rebate worthwhile?

One of the most common questions we get from customers in Tauranga and Western Bay, is "Should I stay with Trustpower to receive the TECT rebate?"

The TECT rebate (or TECT cheque as it is also known) is paid 6-monthly (annually prior to COVID) to Tauranga and Western Bay based customers of Trustpower. In July 2021 the rebate will be $250, so it is not an insignificant amount for most consumers. Locally, Trustpower is often at the top end of electricity rates, so it can feel like the Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away. There is also an air of uncertainty about whether it is all worth it, and whether to shift to another cheaper retailer.

NZ electricity prices are notoriously difficult to navigate and compare. Adding to the myriad of rates with controlled / uncontrolled rates, low or standard user types, and fixed or variable charges, Tauranga and Western Bay consumers have an extra dimension to consider when reviewing power bill costs with the TECT rebate

A quick piece of analysis suggests that for low power users (6,000 kWh and under per year) the TECT rebate often remains worthwhile financially, as the rebate usually exceeds the higher power tariff. For higher power users (8,000 kWh and over per year) the higher tariffs usually exceed the rebate, meaning an alternative lower cost retailer can be financially worthwhile. This leaves a grey area for average users, where deeper analysis is warranted. The analysis considers the specific rates you are on with Trustpower, as well as the rates of the alternative retailer being considered, in addition to your expected future use.

We know that finances are only one function of the equation however, with non-financial factors including having pride in Trustpower's local head office, relatively renewable generation portfolio, and TECT's generous community support all requiring consideration.

Following consultation with beneficiaries, TECT will proceed with changes to Trust structure. The proposal protects the TECT rebate for 30 years and involves creating a new TECT Community Trust. Find out more about what the proposal will mean for TECT consumer beneficiaries here, or on the TECT website.  

It is also important to note that no two consumers are the same, and power company charges should be reviewed in light of your situation, not someone else's. This highlights the importance of being informed when making your decision to change power company or remain. As always, Powerswitch is a great place to start, or you can get in touch with us. A word of warning though - we love Solar!

Stats from MBIE show that residential retail electricity costs have increased 4.24% annually on average from 2001 to 2020. This high long term growth average highlights the ongoing importance of a well thought out strategy to reduce your overall energy costs.

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