Thousands struggling to pay power bills

Money is always tight for Hobart grandmother Kathy Flynn, but never before has a bill brought her to tears.

Debt letters that are collected on past overdue bills

Ms Flynn lives on a pension in the suburb of Chigwell with her three grandchildren — two teenagers who she cares for and another in their twenties who lives independently in a flat out the back.

The family has spent a bit more time at home in the last few months, with the pandemic causing local sport to be cancelled and many social activities wound back.

But nothing prepared Ms Flynn for her winter power bill, which went up by a whopping $900 compared with last winter, to $2,500.

"I just burst out crying," she said.

"You don't reduce me to tears quickly, but that bill reduced me to tears because there was no way I ever thought I'd ever have a bill that huge."

Consumer advocates have long feared a double whammy of larger winter heating bills combined with higher energy usage due to people spending more time at home during the pandemic.

Now it appears those concerns are being realised.

The industry estimates residential energy consumption has risen between 15 and 20 per cent due to the pandemic.

Craig Memery from the Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC) said many people were reporting bill increases in the hundreds of dollars.

"The nub of the problem is that people have been required to be at home, they've lost jobs, they've lost income," he told the ABC.

"And at the same time, people are using a lot more energy.

Powerlines in front of a new housing development in outer Sydney.

"In March, we did some analysis and estimated that some people were going to have energy bill increases in the order of $200 a month, and we have seen that come to fruition since, particularly in the colder winter months."

He said some people were taking extreme measures to ensure they could pay their bill.

"We see people going without essential energy use for heating, for cooling, for heating water so they can clean and shower," Mr Memery said.

"We see people taking on payday loans and unsustainable loan options to allow them to pay their bills and they often come with exorbitantly high interest rates that place people in worse and worse debt."

Rising debts, thousands deferring payment
New data from the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) shows almost 200,000 people across six states and territories are on payment plans, or have deferred paying their bills altogether.

The AER introduced deferrals as an industry guideline in March, so people who couldn't afford to pay their bills during the pandemic could avoid being disconnected.

The data doesn't capture customers in Western Australia or the Northern Territory, which aren't part of the National Energy Market (NEM).

Western Australia does not have any data available from the pandemic, while NT retailer Jacana said a small number of its 80,000 customers were on payment extensions or had deferred their bills.

The industry and its regulator said despite the challenges of the pandemic, energy retailers had responded swiftly to ensure people stayed connected.

But AER chair Clare Savage said the rising amount of household energy debt was concerning.

Clare Savage stands in a park.

"We look at the 90-day debt data — that's when you've had a bill outstanding for 90 days or more — [and] the average debt for those customers was about $960 in March," she said.

"It's increased to over $1,100 now."

In September, AER data showed more than 45,000 residential and small business customers had deferred their bills due to the pandemic, worth about $23 million in total.

The debt deferrals are in place until at least the end of October.

Sarah McNamara from the Australian Energy Council, which represents the industry, said retailers had so far been able to shoulder the financial burden of the debt deferrals due to various industry measures such as delaying payments on network charges.

But she said if customers could make even a small contribution to paying off their bill, they should.

"Mounting debt levels are bad news for customers and bad news for retailers as well," she said.

"What we want to say is, when [customers] can pay, that they start paying those bills and get on payment plans, so they're chipping away at their debt levels over the coming months."

Ms Savage said the impact of winter bills had not been as bad as had been anticipated, thanks to JobSeeker, JobKeeper and state government concession and support programmes.

Advocates worried about months to come
While the industry and its regulator said the support measures in place softened the blow of the pandemic and winter bills, PIAC said people were struggling much more than the data showed.

"People prioritise paying their household energy bills in much the same way that they prioritise things like rent," PIAC's Craig Memery said.

"So what we'll see is a debt problem … [which] hides a much, much bigger problem of sacrifices that they're making in other parts of their life."

He's worried the true impact will be felt in coming months, as support mechanisms are wound back.

In Hobart, Kathy Flynn said her retailer Aurora Energy didn't give her a clear reason why her bill had increased so dramatically.

Ms Flynn had received an expensive winter bill back in 2018, but had since had an energy audit on her home and managed to significantly reduce her costs the following year.

She said she was unsure why her bill had gone back up this winter.

"When I asked why it was so high, [the customer service representative] just said 'because of the COVID-19, everyone's staying at home and the kids are at home and that's why the bill has risen'," she said.

But Ms Flynn said their lifestyle during the pandemic hadn't changed enough to justify such a large rise.

"I'm always at home, and the kids are going to school, so nothing has really changed," Ms Flynn said.

"She said that 'the only other thing is that everyone's threatening to go to the ombudsman, you have a choice to do that'."

Aurora Energy told the ABC that it was a proud Tasmanian organisation that was committed to helping its customers "during these tough times".

"Ms Flynn has been provided with significant support from Aurora's $5M COVID-19 Customer Support Fund, and with tools to ensure she is able to manage her energy usage moving forward," the company said in a statement.

Ms Flynn recently had a meter installed free of charge, which she hopes will go some way towards the family monitoring its energy use in real time and cutting costs.

Industry implores customers to trust them to help
Craig Memery said until recently, energy retailers ranked below banks in terms of consumer trust.

He said many people felt anxious about reaching out for help.

"Trust needs to be earned, and now that's coming back to bite them in a situation where all of the good intentions that the industry might have are going to be hard for people to actually take on face value," he said.

"I do believe that some energy retailers are actually doing their best to try and support people through the pandemic."

He said retailers needed to make sure their customers were on the best deal possible.

"The way the whole energy retail market has worked in recent years has actually relied on people staying on deals that aren't good for them," he said.

"If retailers want to earn trust, they're going to have to reverse that and make sure that people are on the best deal for them."

Sarah McNamara stand in a park and smiles at the camera.

Sarah McNamara from the Australian Energy Council said retailers had been trying hard to reach those in need.

"We don't think it's a good result for customers or retailers if debt levels are rising without some customers paying anything at all, that just makes the situation more stressful for everyone," she said.

"Retailers are working really hard to communicate with their customers and their phone lines are open to have that conversation that will help people start to pay down those bills, even if it's just a small amount per week."

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COMMENTS

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Ducky
16th Oct 2020
4:47pm
I turn my hot water off and then on when the sun shines, the freezer also is turned off and not opened then turned on when the rates are cheaper at night. I have a wood fire so that is warmth in winter. Never use the oven either.
Play Fairly
16th Oct 2020
10:01pm
Ducky, you will eventually reach the point when even all these measures still won't be enough. Living costs are continually rising and any hopes of affording a couple of life's little luxuries are dashed each time you receive the next electricity, rates, insurance, vehicle registration, fuel, etc. etc. My latest "shock" was the yearly insurance premium which has increased by $600 p.a. There is very little wriggle room left in the kitty to keep affording to pay the ever increasing amounts required for any of these bills. Nobody is receiving comparable amounts in their incomes or their Pensions.

What's next Ducky? Eventually, will we be reduced to rubbing two sticks together to cook our food over an open fire ?
Mariner
17th Oct 2020
11:52am
The insurance premium increases are more of a concern to me than the cost of power. Ducky's system might work but I doubt that I would be saving much money, and I do not have a wood heater, would not even know whether our council would allow one in the first place.
ozirules
16th Oct 2020
4:53pm
The rest of the population is finding out what pensioners live with daily, staying at home creates killer power bills. Welcome to our world, Australia. When the pandemic is over, pensioners will still be stuck with exorbitant power bills and an unrealistic pension to pay for it. All the talk from pollies about lowering power bills by privatisation, competition, accountability, self regulation and any other spin from the government's waffle factory is as effective as using razor wire for toilet paper......it leaves us not only still in the poo but suffering while trying to manage with something which will never work.
SuziJ
17th Oct 2020
6:42am
Ozirules, why would you suffer with high power bills if you have the power to choose your supplier and the discounts they offer. If you're in NSW, then you have this power. Do a comparison with what you're now paying and if another supplier is cheaper, then challenge your supplier to give you a larger discount. That's the only way that I can afford my bills. I currently receive a basic 3% and an extra 29% discount on my electricity account just because I did a supplier comparison. If you've been with the same supplier, then challenge them to give you a 'thanks for being with us' discount, like your car and contents insurer can do.

I have a strict budget and put the funds for my bills away in a savings account with interest every fortnight. This means that I have the funds to pay for the bills when they arrive - no problems.

I also don't drink alcohol, smoke, or gamble. It's my choice, but I know how much I save from not doing these.

I live on a single DSP, so I know what I'm talking about with the unrealistic pension.
diamond
19th Oct 2020
7:11am
Suzi,
It is all smoke and mirrors with the power companies. They offer you lower rates on one charge but they are higher on another charges. The company you are with will not negotiate a cheaper rate until you actually leave them then suddenly they offer you abetter rate to get you back. This is true because I have experienced it a couple of times.
midnight
16th Oct 2020
5:31pm
I sat in the cold for two weeks because I ran out of wood. But, I managed and I never light the fire anyway unless it gets down to 6 degrees. Just put on a big coat and a hat. From what I read most pensioners seem to get very good at managing on as little as possible. B UT I have had to give up my one treat, my morning coffee and muffin. I do miss the companionship that would bring.
mitch
16th Oct 2020
5:32pm
pensioners only received $215 cost of living concession and unlike jobseekers and newstart and single parents the disabled .carers ,and pensioners are home virtually 24/7meanwhile the people who had lesser bills as not home 1/3 of the time so there fore lesser bills got $715.Even if they are home 24/7 then why are they getting paid 3 times as much for what the pensioners are already doing.THIS govt cannot give an increase to pensioners but they can afford $400 per employeee to companies for 6 months and after 6 months start again The pensioners should have been given the increase before every one else as they are home all the time and have bigger expenses
nedicine ,doctors, delivery expences electricity gas.The people who now stay home due to unemployment and the virus are catching up to bills pensioners already would be paying if they did not sacrifice things like heating and cooling and bathing to try to make ends meet and due to discrimination from this GOVT about the elderly and people who were in aged care . It seems to me the govt would rather see THE DISABLED CARERS AND PENSIONERS DIE THAN HELP
Farside
16th Oct 2020
5:45pm
jobseekers were deservedly nearer the front of the queue for the covid social security increases
KSS
16th Oct 2020
5:52pm
Pensioners received an extra $1500 NOT $215 and are due to receive two lots of $250 over the next few months. And why would this just past winter be any different for pensioners than the year before? For most, life would not have changed that much - unless you were in Melbourne!
Mariner
17th Oct 2020
11:49am
KSS - my mates in Melbourne save even more money now, they cannot really go anywhere, have not seen son and daughter for months because they are only allowed 5 km away from home to go shopping. Clubs and pubs are out so no spending money for entertainment. Decided to upgrade their place despite them being in their 80s.
diamond
19th Oct 2020
7:17am
KSS,

Mitch is not talking about the $1500 Covid payment he is talking about the state government concession to help with power etc.
Chuck
16th Oct 2020
6:02pm
Information for people living in NSW who are experiencing financial difficulties paying their energy bills (ie electricity and/or gas) .You may be eligible for a one off, financial help in the form of vouchers from the NSW Government.Enquire with Service NSW Ph:137788
Dave R
16th Oct 2020
6:13pm
Live in the tropics and have rooftop solar like I do and power bills are close to zero.
Lippy
16th Oct 2020
6:56pm
Well anyone with a bill that big needs to seriously consider what the heck they are doing. We are a family of 4 with multiple computer's running 24/7 and air con, dishwasher and drier and the most during winter we have had a bill is $400 including recent winter. Paying a mortgage, rates, insurance for home and car, life insurance plus funeral insurance all on 2 pensions. If you can't budget well, contact the National Debt Hotline for free advice. Yes, feel sorry for people but they need to take some responsibility for things causing stress.
Greg
16th Oct 2020
11:28pm
Exactly, $2,300 is ridiculous. Ours with just two people is $80/$90 a month. Maybe they are one of the people who don't shop around for a good deal.
Rae
17th Oct 2020
9:32am
There should be payments for the two grandchildren and the 20 year old needs to pay their own power bill.

It is ridiculous unless it's a huge house with no insulation draining an air conditioner or even some heating less economic. I'd be asking for a check on what is happening.

I've been home all winter and heating came in at $200 extra for the quarter and I didn't stint on it at all.
Mariner
17th Oct 2020
9:36am
With you Greg, our bill is $3 to $4 a day, depending on the heating in winter, no cooling needed in summer. There is definitely something wrong with a power bill of that magnitude. Needs checking out perhaps as someone might be siphoning some off.
Keith
16th Oct 2020
7:08pm
Whoa,,,lucky I moved to SE Asia 10 years ago.
My monthly electricity bill is $15 a month on average. Unlimited internet $13 a month & gas cooking $3 a month. Beers 60 cents and if your a smoker $1 a packet. Local cigs 75 cents a packet.
Good thing I can’t get back there.
Rae
17th Oct 2020
9:34am
Yes Keith.
Australia had an Income and Prices Accord but it seems the Prices part was completely forgotten.

Then the CPI tells us prices are apparently falling.

I'm not sure where these people are shopping but they need to let us know so we too can share the price falls with them.
Mariner
17th Oct 2020
9:51am
Nice place as long as you are healthy, Keith. Smokes no longer interest me and if I want to drink Vietnamese beers Aldi here 500 m away has it for $26 Rivet Gold or $29 Rivet Full Strength. Things are cheaper if you get workers for peanuts; I had lovely stays Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and Indonesia. Not the some prices, however, if you chose Singapore and Malaysia, the latter still affordable.
Lookfar
16th Oct 2020
8:19pm
Interestingly the AEMO, and the AMSC, the two major operators of the East Australian electricity Grid, have announced over thelast cuppla years the enormous amount of cheap electricity provided to the retailers from Renewable Sun and Wind power, yet those savings do not seem to have been passed on, despite some agitation on the subject.
I gather some old stick in the muds who have incorrectly argued for decades that renewable energy would always be horrendouly expensive are fighting to retain their illusions and saying there could not be anything to pass on.
Well the retailers don't object, they buy cheap and sell at the old expensive rate, and now the more expensive gas power will come in, so they will claim their expenses have gone up, - correctly, but shouldn't the expenses have come down first?
The expensive gas power is not here yet.

Either way, the fossil fuel industry is screwing the poor and the industrial section, - what of it hasn't been closed down by the successive Govts of Australia, so it is no wonder that electricity bills have gone up, while wages have been stagnant, so pensions haven't gone up either.
Greg
16th Oct 2020
11:29pm
Our bill's only $80/$90 a month, I don't see a problem with the prices.
Mariner
17th Oct 2020
9:53am
Half of our bill is the service delivery charge.
Incognito
18th Oct 2020
7:54pm
Yep Energy companies are raking it in, promises of cheap electricity have always been a con, and consumers are paying more no matter how cheap production is.
floss
16th Oct 2020
8:29pm
Slow Mow said power prices where on the way down, perhaps the man tells fibs.
Tood
17th Oct 2020
1:36am
Yes they went down 1st July by about 2 cents per kw which equals bugger all! Govt needs to take back utilities by force if necessary, I'm too old to be sitting in the cold for months on end and we shouldn't have to!
Youngagain
17th Oct 2020
3:04pm
Mine didn't Mine went UP by 2c KWH.
Greg
17th Oct 2020
5:07pm
Youngagain - Did you look around for a better deal? There's so many providers now abetter deal is very likely to be there somewhere.
Youngagain
17th Oct 2020
6:19pm
No better deals around, Greg, because the deciding factor for me is the solar rebate and my supplier offers way better than any other in this area.
Lookfar
19th Oct 2020
4:35pm
Floss, my friend said at least 5 cents, but 5 cents on the input side is then translated through all the grasping hands thereafter, - either way, and a lot of those grasping hands have no hold on renewables, so could be more, - but not my area of expertise, as you know.
Greg
16th Oct 2020
11:30pm
$80/$90 per month for our two person household, I can't see the issue if you are sensible and get the right deal.
Tood
17th Oct 2020
1:31am
ridiculously low you must be sitting in the cold or live in the tropics or don't use heating at all. No way in SA with cold winters Covid lockdown retired and home a lot it went to $50 a week, up from $20 a week in the summer
Greg
17th Oct 2020
7:41am
Gas heating, home constantly, two people.

We could pay far more with the wrong plan/company.
Rae
17th Oct 2020
9:39am
Some houses are very large, have no curtains or insulation and must be expensive to heat or cool.

My bill is around $80 a month but I have great insulation, a small house and use heavy insulated curtains to assist heating and cooling.

Kids can be very wasteful of power and need monitoring. They often tend to hand in bedrooms requiring heating of several spaces.

Maybe this is not affordable for a pensioner.
Mariner
17th Oct 2020
10:01am
Got the last bill in front of me. 12 May to 4 Aug, during the cooler time, had air conditioning reverse cycle quite a few evenings = daily cost $3.78. We are in NSW, quite happy with that price and have been with the same supplier for 13 years. Total charges for the period incl. discounts and GST are $321.39.
Greg
17th Oct 2020
11:00am
Todd - Here's my rates:

Peak Usage Mon - Fri, 15:00 - 21:00 c/kWh 31.02
All other times - c/kWh 19.69
Daily Supply Charge c/Day 104.50
Youngagain
17th Oct 2020
3:04pm
I'm much more concerned with bills we can't do anything about such as council rates. The escalation is appalling. Every year they go up, and every few years a revaluation of the land pushes it up further. There is supposed to be a limit to the amount they can increase it by, but councils seem to easily get an exemption to the rule every year and just push it up by whatever percentage they choose.

Insurance is also a worry, because although you can reduce the premium by accepting more risk, it can mean bigger costs if you have a disaster and need to claim.

That said, I have far more sympathy for younger parents who lost their job or had hours reduced than for aged pensioners. Most aged pensioners had ample opportunity to save a nest egg for retirement and should be reasonably comfortable. Some are in difficult circumstances due to major health problems or a spouse having major health issues. Some would have struggled to save anything due to disability that impacted their ability to work when younger. I feel for those who have suffered through crisis, trauma, chronic illness or disability, etc. But there are many young parents out there doing it really tough. I know one who lost her job just before the pandemic due to her spouse having to transfer to another area. No eligibility for Jobseeker or Jobkeeper because spouse is working, and her job loss wasn't a result of the pandemic, but one wage just doesn't cut it for a young family.

I guess I was lucky to grow up in poverty, because I learned both the importance of saving as much as you can and how to get by on very little. I can live quite well on less than pensioners receive, though I've chosen to spend more now because the punishment for saving is way too harsh and I've figured I'd be way better off with half my current savings and a pension.
Greg
17th Oct 2020
5:06pm
Youngagain - I hear this a lot but we don't see it where we live. The last four years our rates have gone down.

2017 $3,504
2018 $3,504
2019 $3,465
2020 $3,331

With insurance, shop around, you'll usually get a better deal and it doesn't help to stay with the same one, means nothing.
Youngagain
17th Oct 2020
6:18pm
Lucky you, Greg. Not sure where that is, but I suspect falling rates is a rare phenomenon. Ours have almost doubled in the 7 years we've owned the current property.

I do shop around for insurance. I compare quotes and policies carefully every year and challenge insurers to work hard for my business. It does pay off, but the cost still rises every year.
Youngagain
17th Oct 2020
6:27pm
BTW. Greg, Loyalty can pay. I can no longer afford to be loyal to the expensive insurer who paid out after a major flood, but the fact that I'd been with them for 20 years was what swayed them to pay way more than they were legally obliged to. We were caught in a very unusual legal wrangle, having contracted to sell the property two days before the flood hit. The insurer had no legal obligations because insurance lapsed the moment we signed the contract, but the buyers had not insured and were determined to get out of the purchase. They possibly would not have succeeded, but lawyers told us we could be tied up in court for up to 2 years with no contract completion. Our insurers said, "Well, you've been loyal clients for 20 years so we feel morally, if not legally, obligated. We'll just repair the damage and the sale can go through." They did an incredible job and it didn't cost us a cent. They also paid our contents claim in 24 hours without requiring a single item of validation. Others spent months assembling proof of purchase, proof of replacement cost, photos of damaged items, etc. and haggling. We sent a single email with a list of damaged items and replacement estimates and the full amount hit our bank account the next day. You can't put a value on the stress relief! I'd love to have been able to continue with that insurer.
Mariner
18th Oct 2020
10:36am
Greg - how can it be that council rates are going down for you? Your property value going down, rezoning of land perhaps? Mine have only ever been on the up and that for every year, no fail.
diamond
19th Oct 2020
7:33am
Greg,
You are living in fairyland. You haven't factored gas into your power costs. Gas prices have risen and it is now very expensive.
The first two years of rates you have quoted are exactly the same.
You have either moved or your property value has been decreased. No Council ever decreases rates.
Greg
19th Oct 2020
5:01pm
diamond - at that point no one mentioned gas only electricity, just telling it how it is.

I haven't moved and councils DO reduce rates.
Cheezil61
16th Oct 2020
11:49pm
A recent YLC article indicated energy prices should fall, but appears they are actually increasing! I know my provider sent a letter saying there's be an increase of around 3cents per kWh & from 105c daily supply charge to 121c per day! I told them it was outrageous and,threatened to change providers as i found a slightly better deal (supply charge 106cents per day, usage 122c kwh) & they chose not to budge so i in fact changed providers as threatened!
Tho this proves YLC got it wrong again!
Youngagain
17th Oct 2020
2:45pm
Yes. My supplier just notified me of a 2c per kwh increase, which amounts to a 10% rise. So much for the government's crap about CPI falling. Fortunately, I put solar on a while back and my supplier has to pay me, but it's a miserable rate by comparison with the charge rate. They pay about 30% of the rate they charge. Rip off!
Greg
17th Oct 2020
5:14pm
Youngagain - The CPI is based on only certain items, not everything, it's quite possible for the electricity to increase 10% and CPI to go down, fuel prices alone have made an enormous difference.

Fuel costs have dropped 19.3%
Furnishings, household equipment and services group have dropped 11.2%

They are the two drivers of the fall, food went up but only 0.5%
Youngagain
17th Oct 2020
6:16pm
Food where I shop rose a lot more than 0.5%, Greg. My weekly food bill has doubled in less than 5 years, with very little change in the shopping list. Fuel prices fluctuate up and down. We've bought cheap fuel at times, but other times it is outrageously expensive. I'm constantly amused by the media broadcasts about fuel prices - telling people 'don't fill up yet, as prices are about to fall'. Really? And we can all drive on an empty tank until they do, can't we? I've seen that message repeated for up to 4 weeks. Then we get 'fill up now as prices are down' every night for 10 days. Only my tank has a limited capacity and I don't drive enough to need to refill daily (thank goodness!)

Yes, Greg. I know how the CPI is calculated. And know the figures are fudged and the basket of goods considered is highly selective. Luxury items and things retirees don't buy fell in price. (Childcare was a huge factor in the calculated drop). Retirees typically don't buy a lot of furnishings or household equipment. Not sure what services fell in price but certainly none that I use. Supposed to be a need for stimulus to keep building activity up, but the tradies in my area are all overbooked and charging double. Loving the pandemic!
diamond
19th Oct 2020
7:38am
Greg is living on another planet- Food prices have risen by 0.5% . Do you also believe in the Tooth Fairy?
Greg
19th Oct 2020
5:03pm
diamond - Try reading and comprehending; I said the food prices as per the CPI went up 0.5%.
diamond
20th Oct 2020
8:47am
Greg, I do shop every week I know that the CPI is not relevant to the real world. The specials on chocolate and junk skew the figures. The prices of healthy food have risen consistently.
Greg
20th Oct 2020
11:10am
diamond - Open your eyes when you shop, specials are far more than chocolate and junk food. No I'm not talking about fresh food, I'm talking about packaged food and goods IN SUPERMARKETS. There's many examples of what we buy that are half price regularly or 20, 30% off.

I provided my food figures for the last few years, went down one year and stayed the same the next. That's a whole year, gives a good overall look at the total costs.
mitch
17th Oct 2020
12:35am
Newstart and single parents received $1x$750 then an extra $8.5000 plus $715 cost of living increase and for what
How many jobs did they apply for.
PENSIONERS and carers and the disabled got 2x$750 and a catch up to the cost of living concession of 2x$250 so everyone got $715 so you think the elderly deserve to be shafted so people like you can comment about something you know nothing about.YOU DO NOT KNOW WHAT THE AGED DISABLED AND CARERS GO WITHOUT TO SURVIVE AND WHAT THEY DID FOR THIS COUNTRY SO YOU WOULD BE BETTER OFF not commenting on things you do not know .If you do know what the pensioners go without then let me know and how you would makje the things you take for granted better
Farside
17th Oct 2020
9:23pm
and add to those covid allowances the annual newstart/jobseeker and compare with the annual pension plus the covid bonuses .... now the jobseeker covid allowances are falling I'm pretty confident which largesse most would prefer to receive each year
SuziJ
17th Oct 2020
6:26am
I'm currently on a 2 year fixed tariff electricity agreement. In November this gets extended for however long I'm living in the premises. Before I moved, I did a discount comparison to another supplier and was granted a further discount to 'make up for' the savings I would have received if I had moved to the other supplier.

I don't expect my bill to be any higher than last year, as I've been home the same amount of time as last year.

Be very careful when you read your bills, as some use an estimate rather than a 'real' read. If you think your bill is too high, go out and read your meter and compare it to the 'actual' figures you have on your bill. If it's more than 5% difference in your favour, take a photo of the meters and ask the supplier to reissue you with an amended bill. There's no real reason for estimates if the meter is at the front of your building and has no access issues. It's just the readers being lazy and not wanting to do the work they're being paid for.
Rae
17th Oct 2020
9:27am
Maybe the ABC can research why CPI is -1% yet everything is rising in costs.

Is the CPI being manipulated to simply control wages and incomes instead of being an actual measurement of inflation.

If CPI is negative and incomes controlled then surely prices should be falling.
KSS
17th Oct 2020
12:12pm
Perhaps the ABC might also like to investigate why, if CPI is 1%, they demanded - and got - a 2% wage increase!
mitch
17th Oct 2020
12:54pm
there is no such thing as the cpi ONLY BULLSHIT.
NOTHING has gone down except things that are not neccessary
food up, council rates up. electricity has gone up, gas up E.M.S.LEVY up rego up. insurance up.POLITICIANS PAY UP, COMPANY PROFITS UP THAT HAD GOVT ASSISTANCE .NEWSTART UP JOBSEEKERS UP, SINGLE PARENTS UPP.THE ONLY THING THAT HAS NOT GONE UP DUE TO DISCRIMINATION IS THE DISABILITY PENSION .THE CARERS PENSION AND THE AGED PENSIONI WOULD LIKE TO KNOW WHAT necessaty WENT DOWN THAT THE LATTER NEED .ACCORDING TO ANNE RUSTON .THE WELFARE MINISTER, ALL PENSIONS ARE BASED ON THE C.P.I. AND NOW WE KNOW THAT IS BULLSHIT because if the C.P.I. WAS DOWN %3.00 then why did doleys get a %100 increase and pensioners none if they are based on the C.P.I. Tax ccuts are another way of giving every one more take home pay especially for the rich but it means once again welfare get nothing again
Greg
17th Oct 2020
5:41pm
Everything is not rising, people say that but if you shop around a little for a better deal on utilities, insurance you'll usually find something better. I always do.

The last four years our rates have decreased from $3,504 to $3,331.

Electricity was $1,200 a year, just signed up to another company and it will be around $1,050 now.

Gas has stayed around the same.

Car insurance last year $887, this year $706.

Rego up over four years $32.00, big deal.

House/Contents Insurance gone down $4.00 this year.


The CPI figures have reduced due to mainly two items, fuel costs and child care costs. Other items have increased slightly like food at 0.5% which I can see. We've spent less this year than any previous, plenty of half price specials come up for certain items regularly, stock up on the ones that last.
Lookfar
17th Oct 2020
6:05pm
Hi Rae, I must admit i do not understand the CPI, it seems to me to be an unknown, multiplied by an unknown.
I gather you have some understanding in this area.
Below is a couple of definitions, - as I said, I find it very difficult to see where value comes in there, particularly when advertising warps value.
I will read any comments you make on this issue with more than the usual intensity.

Cheers,
Lookfar.

- Google search of Consumer Price Index.
Definition: A comprehensive measure used for estimation of price changes in a basket of goods and services representative of consumption expenditure in an economy is called consumer price index.
Wikipedia cpi, A consumer price index measures changes in the price level of a weighted average market basket of consumer goods and services purchased by households.[1]
A CPI is a statistical estimate constructed using the prices of a sample of representative items whose prices are collected periodically. Sub-indices and sub-sub-indices can be computed for different categories and sub-categories of goods and services, being combined to produce the overall index with weights reflecting their shares in the total of the consumer expenditures covered by the index. It is one of several price indices calculated by most national statistical agencies. The annual percentage change in a CPI is used as a measure of inflation. A CPI can be used to index (i.e. adjust for the effect of inflation) the real value of wages, salaries, and pensions; to regulate prices; and to deflate monetary magnitudes to show changes in real values. In most countries, the CPI, along with the population census, is one of the most closely watched national economic statistics.

Inflation compared to federal funds rate

A graph of the US CPI from 1913 (in blue), and its percentage annual change (in red)
The index is usually computed monthly, or quarterly in some countries, as a weighted average of sub-indices for different components of consumer expenditure, such as food, housing, shoes, clothing, each of which is in turn a weighted average of sub-sub-indices. At the most detailed level, the elementary aggregate level, (for example, men's shirts sold in department stores in San Francisco), detailed weighting information is unavailable, so indices are computed using an unweighted arithmetic or geometric mean of the prices of the sampled product offers. (However, the growing use of scanner data is gradually making weighting information available even at the most detailed level.) These indices compare prices each month with prices in the price-reference month. The weights used to combine them into the higher-level aggregates, and then into the overall index, relate to the estimated expenditures during a preceding whole year of the consumers covered by the index on the products within its scope in the area covered. Thus the index is a fixed-weight index, but rarely a true Laspeyres index, since the weight-reference period of a year and the price-reference period, usually a more recent single month, do not coincide.
Ideally, the weights would relate to the composition of expenditure during the time between the price-reference month and the current month. There is a large technical economics literature on index formulas which would approximate this and which can be shown to approximate what economic theorists call a true cost-of-living index. Such an index would show how consumer expenditure would have to move to compensate for price changes so as to allow consumers to maintain a constant standard of living. Approximations can only be computed retrospectively, whereas the index has to appear monthly and, preferably, quite soon. Nevertheless, in some countries, notably in the United States and Sweden, the philosophy of the index is that it is inspired by and approximates the notion of a true cost of living (constant utility) index, whereas in most of Europe it is regarded more pragmatically.
The coverage of the index may be limited. Consumers' expenditure abroad is usually excluded; visitors' expenditure within the country may be excluded in principle if not in practice; the rural population may or may not be included; certain groups such as the very rich or the very poor may be excluded. Saving and investment are always excluded, though the prices paid for financial services provided by financial intermediaries may be included along with insurance.
The index reference period, usually called the base year, often differs both from the weight-reference period and the price-reference period. This is just a matter of rescaling the whole time-series to make the value for the index reference-period equal to 100. Annually revised weights are a desirable but expensive feature of an index, for the older the weights the greater is the divergence between the current expenditure pattern and that of the weight reference-period.
It is calculated and reported on a per region or country basis on a monthly and annual basis. International organizations like the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) report statistical figures like the consumer price index for many of its member countries.[2] In the US the CPI is usually reported by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.[3][4][5][6]

Contents
Farside
17th Oct 2020
9:34pm
ABS has plenty of information related to the CPI and its calculation. The CPI went negative last quarter largely because of falls in Furnishing, Household Equipment and Services (-11.2%) and Transport (-6.8%) and Education (-3.7%).

https://www.abs.gov.au/statistics/economy/price-indexes-and-inflation/consumer-price-index-australia/latest-release

https://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/DSSbyCollectionid/1E564CACF4CBEC32CA256ED8007EF06E
Youngagain
18th Oct 2020
2:57pm
Correct, Farside. And retirees don't buy much of the things that fell in price, so saying a pension increase isn't needed is dishonest. The essentials - food, electricity, gas, rent, council rates, insurances, medical and pharmaceutical costs, etc. all increased in price.
mitch
17th Oct 2020
12:33pm
to all the people who have low bills, do you have solar as well. in s.a. i am paying 35 cents per kilowatt and i would like one of you people who get cheap electricity at around 20 cents per kilowatt to let me know if it is available in S.a.and with who .I had 1 reduction in electricity i n 10 years and that was by half a cent yet we have been promised cheaper electricity and it never happened.Tell me all you people with all your cheap elevtricity WHAT ARE YOUR GAS BILLS LIKEas i think all you people with small electricity bills have gas cooking and heating and solar hot water.IT SEEMS THE EASTERN STATES GET BETTER ELECTRICITY DEALS THAN ALL THE OTHER STATES BUT AS THE MAJORITY IS IN THE EASTERN STATES I AM NOT SURPRISED AS THE GOVT LOOKS AFTER THE EASTERN STATES MORE THAN OTHER STATES.TELL ME GREG WHO YOU ARE WITH .IF you cannot or will not ,look up if it is available in S.A. and give me some information because i do not think people here can get anything like you say you get
Greg
17th Oct 2020
12:56pm
Maybe you can use this, not sure for SA.

Yes we have gas around $1,000 per year. Electricity around $1.050 per year.
Two people, at home mostly.
Greg
17th Oct 2020
1:10pm
Forgot the website

https://www.energywatch.com.au/
Mariner
17th Oct 2020
2:46pm
Electric power here $1200 per year, no gas available unless purchasing bottles. North NSW.
Youngagain
17th Oct 2020
3:09pm
Friends in norther NSW have bottled gas for hot water and cooking, Mariner. $250 a year average for gas and the NSW Govt pays half of that every year. That's a great deal! I have solar hot water but I'd much prefer bottled gas. Instantaneous system means hot water on demand whenever you need it, cheap, inexpensive to install, and you never pay for anything you don't use.
Lookfar
19th Oct 2020
11:51am
Mitch, as Greg pays for Gas as well, that is still $85/fortnight so up there with the rest of us.

It is interesting to know that gas is very efficient at heating hot water- over 95%, whereas to drive an electrical generator, ie in a power station, you are lucky to get over 30%, so it is much more efficient to run your hot water on gas.
This indicates how silly it is of Morrison to choose Gas to lower electricity prices, God knows what got into him..
Youngagain
17th Oct 2020
3:07pm
Two quarters at that rate would more than pay for a decent-size solar system. I think the government should be financing solar installations and making it compulsory for landlords to install solar. Problem solved!
mitch
18th Oct 2020
11:24am
50 thousand housing trust tenants have free solar with battery back up in S.A.of which most are single unmarried parents .Paid by the govt at tax payers expence.If single parents can get free electricity then why not everyone/once again it is govt discrimination .What is good for 1 should be good for everyone.
Mariner
18th Oct 2020
12:57pm
Some of us do not have solar systems as we live in units. Everyone would have to agree and is not going to happen. Might have to buy a house or cottage in future (twice the price where I live!)
Scottie scott
17th Oct 2020
4:31pm
Good point Keith...hate to compare good apples with bad apples but I to always said Australia is the lucky country,but when you sell the state’s assets to private enterprises you will have to pay,I am lucky I moved to Nha Trang in Vietnam,this is now deemed the lucky country for me with no Covid,isolation ,good living standards and as Keith points cheap to live,the house I live in cost my Vietnamese wife and I $9500 and has mountain and ocean views,these are prices we paid in Australia in the 70s and are more than affordable,love Australia but don’t like what it’s doing to the people especially the pensioners, at the next election all 2+million of us should send in a mass vote of no confidence asking them what they stand to do and make the bastards accountable ( ps I can’t get the pension as the xxxxxx want me to return to Aus leave my wife behind,for 2 years so I can receive a reduced pension overseas xxxxxxx wonder if Gormans govt pension has these restrictions,to those pensioners who matter the most ,lots of love and be kind to each other in your posts
Mariner
17th Oct 2020
4:49pm
IF you mean German instead of Gorman then the answer is no, you will get the pension where you live but there are qualifications getting it. In Australia everybody get the pension especially if he has never put anything in - the more you piss up during your productive life the more you get in old age. If you got nothing to show you get the most. Problem is you have to stay here to get it. There are good points and bad ones, wish you happy times.
Rae
24th Oct 2020
12:00pm
Mariner everyone in Australia does not get the pension at all.

It is asset and income tested.

This encourages spending rather than saving for some unfathomable reason.
Farside
24th Oct 2020
8:57pm
I am guessing from the posts over recent years that saving in excess of the assets test limit or earning income excess of the income test limit would be challenging for many retirees on this site. I think the point Mariner is raising is that unlike some European countries where pensions depend upon contributions and working years, everyone in Australia is entitled to a pension provided they are eligible within the means test as you wrote. Certainly the 2017 changes to the means test have changed the attitude of many to spend down to qualify for the age pension.
Scottie scott
17th Oct 2020
5:58pm
Yeah Mariner,that’s the way it seems to work,I have $8 in the bank and that is my total worth,the banks took my house but I do have a tax dept credit of$136,000 but I can only get that if I work and or make a profit,fat chance of that at 66yrs old,if I come back to Aus for the 2 years I still need to buy a tent and a bucket to piss in,I feel for the pensioners who had but due to circumstances have lost it and can’t afford the bucket
Mariner
18th Oct 2020
10:29am
If you have done military service you might qualify for RSL housing as public housing has too long a list for your 66 years of age but you still might get in if you go where they tell you to live. Some units might be available in certain areas. An ex army mate on the Gold Coast needed accommodation, RSL found him a spot but he had to shift to the Atherton Tablelands at Mareeba. He took it and he's happy there.
mitch
18th Oct 2020
2:50am
GREG you have an electricity bill of $270 a quarter which when you take away your supply charge of $104.50 a day for 90 days =$94.05 means you actual electricity bill is $176 = on average of 3hrs peak and 5hrs off peak ==$1.91 a day WHICH means the numbers do not add up unless both of you are out of the house over 16 hrs per day or you have gas cooking as well as gas heating and either gas hot water or solar.If you are going to say how much cheaper your bill is than everyone elses then lets know why as my average bill is around $600 per quarter and i have gas heating and gas cooker and solar hot water and led lighting however as a pensioner with a disabled person we are home 24/7. Also food in S.A. has gone up %19 since the virus and still rising Council rates here have never gone down always up and insurance has gone up so much we cannot afford it.Do not forget that a married carer and a disabled person married is still getting less than people on the dole.
Greg
18th Oct 2020
3:28pm
Gee, sorry I have a low bill, I'll try to increase it if that makes you happy.

The last 12 months I've had electricity at $1152 & Gas at $762. We have been home far more due to the virus.

Yes, the electricity averages to $96 per month BUT that was on my old plan; I changed companies recently and the new estimate will be around the $1,050 mark. Old company rates were: Supply charge $1.80 daily, usage $0.45 to 335 kw, $0.51 over

We have gas hot water, gas heating and that's all, the rest is electric.

2 large TV's, 2 PVR's, Stereo Amp - All on stand-by
2 door Fridge, PC - always on
LED lights throughout
Wife likes a clean house so vacuums a lot.
Mariner
18th Oct 2020
3:38pm
Like the last item Greg. Mine does the same, I leave doors open when she's not home. She reckons dust blows in and these dry times she might be right.
mitch
18th Oct 2020
3:26am
CPI IS A FARCE ... IF THE C.P.I. has gone down then why is everything here gone up .C.P.I.is just an excuse to keep pensions down while the rich get richer ,POLITICIANS get pay rises and for what.LETTING AUSTRALIA BURN ,INVITING PEOPLE INTO THE COUNTRY WITH A VIRUS.ALLOWING HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE IN AGED CARE to be murdered by incompetent carers meanwhile paying the govt to look after them.Ler not forget all the lies and passing blame on to everyone else for there decissions.I WONDER IF THE POLITICIANS HAVE TO GO TO SCHOOL TO LEARN HOW TO LIE AND DECEIVE AND SUPPORT ONLY THE WEALTHY..Another
way the govt is supporting the wealthy by giving them $10,000 for every one they employ for 6 months as well as what they have already received.They can hire 10 pe0ple or more and double there workforce for half as much expenditure.SDounds like a good deal for them .FRUIT ANDvegatables are going up because they cannot get pickers and who would go working doing that when they are already getting over$400 a week to sit at home.they should be forced to take a job just like it was 25 years ago.
Greg
18th Oct 2020
3:03pm
CPI is based on certain items, a couple of those items have gone down dramatically and so the net effect is a minus CPI figure. (fuel and child care went down hard)

The CPI is used around the world, it's not an Australian thing to keep pensions low.
Incognito
18th Oct 2020
8:00pm
This article is about a family in Tasmania! It is cold most of the year and they have had to spend so much time at home because of the pandemic. Normally most would be at work or school or other. Kids homeschooling have had to keep computers running. Having electric heating on all day would dramatically make the bill bigger. And who knows maybe the "smart" meter is not working correctly.
One thing is with everyone working from home all those office buildings are not using electricity so there must be a glut of electricity and prices should come down accordingly IMO.
mitch
18th Oct 2020
9:42pm
greg you state that 2 of you are home most of the time so you must be one of 2 asleep or a know it all liar .there is no way you and the other person you live with can spend less than $2 a day on power .I asked what company you are with to check if you are telling me the truth because i cannot see a electricity company giving you less than 20 cents for weekends and 18 hours today Put your money where your mouth is and let everyone know who you got this deal with.If you cannot or will not let me and everyone else know i say you are lying about what you pay with what you have and the hours you are home THERE IS NO WAY IN HELL THAT 2 PEOPLE ARE HOME NEARLY ALL DAY AND ONLY USE $1.90/day UNLESS YOU HAVE NOTHING ON ALL DAY .HOT water alone is $1 /day.ASyou are so well informed please tell me what has gone down for pensioners as i do not know of 1 thing.I THINK YOU write TO CONGRATULATE YOURSELF FOR BEING THE ONLY ONE IN AUSTRALIA WHERE THINGS HAVE GONE DOWN because no one else says there council elec,gas ,insurance gone down and food has gone up only {%.5 where do you live .WHAT STATE AS I AM MOVING.
Greg
18th Oct 2020
11:28pm
Oh no, sorry I forgot to mention the company. What else would you like to know, how often I shit each day.

Why the hell would I lie about it, I have nothing to gain, no one knows who I am, where I live and it can't be found through my profile. What I've said is true, I get a Low Income Health Care Card concession worth around 10% I think, I don't know the exact amount or how it's calculated as they don't say but appears to be around 10% each time.

Electricity was with Amaysim Energy but I've just changed to Tango Energy last month as it's cheaper again.

Here's a direct "copy and paste" from my Offer Summary:

Electricity Rates - AusNet Services Distribution Area - Flexible

(inc.GST)
Peak Usage Mon - Fri, 15:00 - 21:00 c/kWh 31.02
Shoulder Usage Mon - Fri, 07:00 - 15:00; Mon - Fri, 21:00 - 22:00; Sat - Sun, 07:00 - 22:00 c/kWh 19.69
Off-Peak Usage 22:00 - 07:00 c/kWh 19.69
Daily Supply Charge c/Day 104.50
Greg
19th Oct 2020
12:16am
Also you ranted on about me saying other items have reduced and you don't believe me, well it's TRUE.

Council rates HAVE gone down, I quoted the exact figures for each year, I can't help it, they are as they are.

Car Insurance - maybe I was paying too much before. Have you ever tried getting quotes for insurance or do you blindly keep paying the same company year after year who WILL charge you more because they have a good customer who won't stray elsewhere. You call them up, tell them you can get $400 off elsewhere and magically they will match it......but they were happy to accept your full higher price if you don't ask questions.

Each year I try a dozen or so insurance companies and I get dramatically different prices, like the last one I paid $706.00 but the dearest one was $1600, more then double. You have to shop around.


The food figure I quoted was the CPI, it went 0.5%.
I log EVERY item we purchase, EVERY item in an app on my phone, this can be emailed to my PC where I can delve down into the figures in detail.

Oct '17 to Sept '18 we spent $8269.76 on groceries (Coles, Woolies, Aldi) We don't go to
butchers, green grocer
Oct '18 to Sept '19 we spent $7704.12 on groceries

Oct '19 to Sept '20 we spent $7692.23 on groceries

As you can see a reduction from '17/'18 and the last two years the same.


Our total spend in 17/18 was $42,171.29.

Our total spend in 18/19 was $38,562.15

Our total spend in 19/20 was $42,450.30 This has included some one-offs like landscaping, blinds, new PC, shed, all amounting to $5110

Believe it or not mate, those figures are all correct, I keep good records, always have. I was audited by the tax office a few years ago, I worked on the road for 10 years and had massive deductions which looked odd to them. They audited two years of returns and found ONE item I was claiming for every Sunday that I should not have done. They stated: "While there are some discrepancies, no adjustment will be made." These amounted to $3,000 yet they weren't interested in me paying it back as, in their words:

"As your records have been thorough and we acknowledge that you were under the belief that you did not need to substantiate those expenses and as such, we have accepted that you incurred them."

My point with the above is I keep good records, the figures are what I have paid for everything as I stated.

I'm in regional Vic.
diamond
19th Oct 2020
8:25am
Greg,
No one else believes you either. Biggest load of BS I have ever read. Love to see the landscaping , new blinds and a shed you got for $5110.
Why don't you tell us which shire you live in so we can check up on rate reductions. The first two years on your figures were the same so how can you quote reduction over 4 years.
Yes you can get reductions in insurance if you change to a new company every year but you need to check what is covered. A cheap premium is not worth it when you have a claim and find you are not fully covered. I have seen several people burned by this.
IF you keep such exemplary records what did you pay for toilet paper in 2017/18.
diamond
19th Oct 2020
8:56am
BY the way Greg your rates are extremely high for a regional area in Victoria. I am in a popular coastal shire in Northern NSW and my rates this year were $2298
Mariner
19th Oct 2020
11:24am
diamond - that is our rates as well with the pension discount. Labelled 'minimum rates applicable'. We must live in the same shire.
diamond
19th Oct 2020
12:38pm
Could do Mariner.
Farside
19th Oct 2020
1:26pm
why are folks so triggered over Greg's costs? Are his claims outrageous?

I'm not surprised at his energy costs, just tallied up my bills for last 12 months $309.38 for an all electric home with a 5kw solar and running heat pump hws, r/c a/c for heating/cooling, fridge and bar fridge, computer and two tvs on standby 24/7, induction cooking. Only one person during covid but before that usually two or three here. This was significantly higher than previous year when it was just under $70 due to generating 30% less power than previous year.

Rate reductions are possible if there has been significant residential and commercial development in the shire, even with property values increasing. Without knowing anything about his property it is imprudent to comment on its rateable value.
Greg
19th Oct 2020
5:35pm
diamond - You have a big problem and a bigger mouth.

There are 25 million people in Australia, millions of homes and 537 councils, how the hell do you know what all those people and councils do, what conditions people live in, hot, cold, 1 person, 2 persons, 3 persons, etc, do they use gas, solar and you seem to know every council in Australia and how they adjust their rates. You obviously have a device to access the internet, why not look up the electricity costs around the country or look up the average costs.

Yes my rates are high, wow, thanks for that information, I had no idea.......der. One of the highest in the country and was the highest in Vic a couple of years ago. Not sure now and I'm not wasting time looking.

Yes I had landscaping done, the nature strip, finish off the initial house landscaping that cost $23,000 four years ago.

$2,910 landscaping
$1,195 New PC (parts only, self built)
$650 Two blinds for outside
$355 A small "off-the-wall" shed (on sale)

Sorry those things may not be up to your high standards but they do us fine.

"The first two years on your figures were the same so how can you quote reduction over 4
years."

I quoted the figures for the four years, yes two years were the same and two years went down - wow, shoot me for saying the wrong thing.

Changing insurance companies - Gee, I never knew there were differences in the cover of policies. Please, tell me more....

FFS, yes OBVIOUSLY there are differences, that's why I get numerous quotes, ensure the excess is the same, ensure the conditions are the same or similar and go with the one that fits best. I never said I went with the cheapest, I just research it and get what's the best policy for me. Of course the stupid people just receive their renewal and pay it, probably because they are too stupid to realise that insurance companies love those people, they send out a high premium and the idiots blindly pay it. You can get quotes, call your company and tell them and often they will match or better the rate.....but they WERE quite happy to accept your full premium. That's how they treat loyal customers.

Now rates - below is a comparison of rates, I'm in Wodonga. Now use those two things on your face and look at the top graph right hand side. That's showing you the average rates for Wodonga, yes lower than mine, but that's an AVERAGE with 898 sqm, there are many smaller blocks here which drives the average down.

The important part is the trend of the average rates, first three years they went up slightly and in 2018-2019 they went DOWN. See that DOWN, DOWN, DOWN. So much for your "No Council ever decreases rates." comment.

https://knowyourcouncil.vic.gov.au/compare-councils?primary=17277&service_area_key=financial_performance&councils=14241&councils=15077&councils=15165
diamond
20th Oct 2020
8:41am
Greg, You have a real problem. Anyone who challenges you you turn to insults and the potty mouth appears. Remember the old "sticks and stones".
Never known the rates to go down in any shire I have lived -Except for when the the emergency services levy was taken off.
Your statement on food price specials doesn't add up unless your diets consists of chocolates and other unhealthy things like chips and soft drinks. Fruit and veg has been very expensive i.e. $7-$9 a kilo for tomatoes.
I see you are also an expert in NSW prices. I have found Canstar reports great on the surface but sometimes when you go further into things they are not as good as portrayed.
If you spend your days working out every cent you spend I feel very sorry for you. That is not a life it is a miserable existence.
You have insulted everyone else on this discussion whose opinion differs to yours, NOTE for you: everyone is entitle to express an opinion without being attacked. That is what forums are about.
diamond
20th Oct 2020
9:20am
Greg, You might like to look into how CANSTAR and other comparison sites are funded:

https://www.choice.com.au/money/insurance/insurance-advice/articles/insurance-comparison-sites
Greg
20th Oct 2020
11:42am
diamond - Yes everyone is entitled to their opinion but when jerks like you call me a liar and don't believe the facts I've stated you deserve a serve.

"No one else believes you either. Biggest load of BS I have ever read. Love to see the landscaping , new blinds and a shed you got for $5110." and "everyone is entitle to express an opinion without being attacked."

Who said that?

I originally said what I pay for things and it was YOU who went on a couple of times about my so-called lies and it's just not possible to pay that much.

537 councils around the country, have you lived in all of them? Don't go making out people are lying when you don't know what you're talking about. You do realise that there's more to the world than where you live, the universe doesn't revolve around you. So I assume you saw the Wodonga rates I linked and how they went DOWN? Thanks for the apology.

Far more to groceries specials than junk food, maybe you need to open your eyes more. You had it wrong about my rates, you had it wrong about my electricity prices and this is just another thing you have wrong. By the way I bought tomatoes yesterday at Coles, $3.40 kg....I guess you won't believe that either. Again it's a big world and doesn't revolve around your little piece of ground.

If you think it takes all day to work out budgets and keep track of your finances, well that may well be why you pay more for things than you need to. You obviously have no idea about finances. Anything I buy I log it in my app on the phone, usually wait until I get home, go through the receipts and log them in. Takes a minute and I look at my bank accounts every night and log in the direct debits another two minutes.

So all up three minutes at most a day and all the figures are there to see when and IF I need to. I don't look at them much because I have a good idea where we are but I called them up to post on here. Even if you don't believe me they are what they are. And it's not a miserable existence, far from it, having a great time after retiring at 55.

What's your issue with Canstar. I've never looked at it before, I was just looking to see what average prices were after you idiots said I was lying about my electricity and guess what, the figures they quoted are VERY similar to mine, go figure. And I don't give a rats arse who funds them, all you do is see comparisons, you can use other government sites to get the same information and than go to the company involved and find out the correct information IF Canstar is wrong. No big deal.

You know if you can't get out of your own way to save yourself money that's YOUR issue, I may have another 35/40 years to live, who knows, and I make sure the funds are available to live comfortably for that time as best as I can.
mitch
19th Oct 2020
2:38am
Does anyone else in regional victoria think food prices have not increased more than %.5 as greg thinks food has not gone up but has gone down for the last 2 years .i will smoke what he smokes because he is dreaming YOU CAN keep all the receipts you want but your shopping will never be the same twice .Something always changes and usually it is an increase except for specials.Has anyone else got lower food bills without going without.
Your first statement said you pay 31.02 for peak from3pm to 9 pm and 19.69 the rest of the time which going by what you say now is untrue.YOU SAID YOU ARE BOTH HOME MOST OF THE TIME and if you have a health care card you should get $50 off your bill per quarter. Is that taken off your bill or what. TOhave a small bill like you say and you are home all the time you cannot do much.Like i said I have 2 tvs but only watch 1 .i have 2 fridges on all the time and usually 2 led lights at night.i have solar hot water annd gas heating and cooking.yet i cannot get the bill below $600 Maybe it is S.A. charges but unlike the eastern states the govt does not help other stated .If you do not believe the govt looks after eastern states better than S.A.go searching for information.
Lookfar
19th Oct 2020
12:51pm
Mitch, he hasn't taken the Gas into account,- on those figures he gave to you earlier he had a total of $2050. including the gas, - divide by 26 gives you $79. per Fortnight, - just like others.
He has confused the fortnightly for monthly, hence it was unbelievable.

The gas, as it is used to heat hot water, - which normally would use electricity, or cook food, or heat a room or a house, is part of your energy bill, as the Gas is substituing for Electricity.
Farside
19th Oct 2020
1:41pm
mitch my bill is lower than Greg's so no reason to find it dubious. I am also in regional Vic and live in an all electric house i.e. no gas. Have been home most of the time due to covid restrictions, run 2 fridges, 2 tvs on standby, computer, cooking, rcac for heating, heat pump hws. Most recent bill (paid today) $24.98. Tango peak (0700-2300 M-F) 29.458 and offpeak 14.421 with a supply charge of 108.900. I receive FIT 10.200 for 5kw solar.
Greg
19th Oct 2020
5:06pm
Lookfar - I'm not confused about anything, I mentioned my gas, electricity and stated I had gas hot water and gas heating, the rest is electricity. It's all there to read.
Greg
19th Oct 2020
6:03pm
mitch - try reading AND comprehending. I said the CPI had food prices up 0.5%, I DIDN'T say I thought they went up that much, I said I didn't think they have changed much, and that IS reflected in my food costs of the years.

Some FACTS for you

- Health Care Card DOES NOT give you $50 dollars off, it gives you 17.5% off the amount OVER $171.60 per year. And yes the cost I quoted has had the concession taken off already, it is the amount I paid in 12 months.

https://services.dhhs.vic.gov.au/annual-electricity-concession

- Obviously shopping is not the same week to week, hence I quoted a yearly figure, isn't that enough time to average out costs? What would you like, two years, ten years?

- Read my comments properly; I said the last 12 months I paid $1152 for electricity. I have now changed to another company and the yearly cost should be around $1050. That's with Tango Energy. Yes I said my NEW RATES are 31.02 and 19.69, why is that untrue?

- I have two TVs, one on for 5 hours at night and both on for 2-3 hours generally, PVR's x 2 on all the time, PC on all the time.


Have a look at the page I've linked below, average prices for electricity in each state. There's also a list of the cheapest providers for each state using 3900kWh/year. Go down to Victoria, see the amounts, $1170 to $1220, I said mine was $1152.....not very different is it.

Look at NSW, they are even cheaper.

https://www.canstarblue.com.au/electricity/average-electricity-bills/
Lookfar
19th Oct 2020
6:03pm
Greg, I am a renewable energy system designer, - I have to design household and industrial situations to enable them to survive on stand-alone power systems, - no trickery will produce power if it is not there, - perhaps you could think of this.

The average house uses almost 50% of it's Electricity on heating water, perhaps you have no idea of that, being whatever you are, so using Gas means a huge difference, as does having a Solar array connected.

So to look at your earlier reply to Mitch, presumably true at the time,

'Maybe you can use this, not sure for SA.
"Yes we have gas around $1,000 per year. Electricity around $1.050 per year.
Two people, at home mostly." ''

So Greg, I design a house supply/storage on your base info you are announcing on the Internet, what was it 70/ $80 per month? and your system fails, and you come to me and say "our system failed", we want our money back in FuLL.

Well I always have my customers fill in an Energy budget, detailing all appliances used and for how long each day, so fairly easy to walk with you in your place and point out all the appliances that you did not include, - or used gas or diesel gen-sets for.

This stuff is not rocket science, if you have lied about your usage, you will lose in the court, as your system was designed around your usage, - provided by you.

Your described system is useless for a Designer, because you have not come clean that you had snuck in a comprehensive gas system in your house, that no doubt you felt we should pay the bills for, for evemore, - and done it to YLC, also, presumably you thought that we are all dumb, yet you acknowlede ony half of your bills???
Greg
19th Oct 2020
11:07pm
lookfar - What the hell are you talking about.

There's something wrong you people, READ ALL THE BLOODY COMMENTS. Mitch keeps adding new threads instead of answering to an existing thread so becomes disjointed.

I have said TWICE NOW, and this will be the third time:

I have not lied about my chargers, I have no reason to lie about my charges. I stated my electricity for the last year AND my GAS amount for the last, obviously they go together. I explained what I have on GAS and what is electric.

I have also provided average figures for Vic for electricity which are in line with my charges.

And you design systems, FFS, how many people have you screwed around? You can't read and comprehend simple English.

"....and done it to YLC, also, presumably you thought that we are all dumb, yet you acknowlede ony half of your bills???"

What the fu**, you are an idiot.
Greg
19th Oct 2020
11:13pm
Lookfar - "The average house uses almost 50% of it's Electricity on heating water, perhaps you have no idea of that, being whatever you are, so using Gas means a huge difference, as does having a Solar array connected."

Yeah I have no idea about that, FFS, you are so up yourself, you think you are the only smart person on here, talking down to me all the time.

Obviously hot water costs a large amount of the electricity bill, HENCE I said I have gas hot water and gave my gas amount for the year also.

Again READ ALL THE COMMENTS
mitch
19th Oct 2020
5:40pm
to farside
Of course you power bill is lower ,you do not pay anything for electricity on sunny days and you get a feed in tarrif. This makes a big difference .WHAT were your bills prior to you getting solar and if your power bills are as low as gregs back when you got solar,My question is if your power bill was $1.90 a day like gregs why would you get solar.By the way all eastern states seem to get power at least %25cheaper than S.A.
mitch
19th Oct 2020
6:03pm
to lookfar
I have gas heating and gas cooking and my yearly bill is about $1,060 of which $240 is supply charge and G.S.T..So why am i paying twice ,What service is there other than supply the gas IT is bullshit the $100 GST which i do not understand because i would think a supply charge is what gst is, A service charge
My electricity bill for the year is about$1,800 less $200 as a pensioner and it includes$296 supply charge which like the gas the govt double dips on GST. i pay the electricity company to supply the power so is that not a service i am already paying for .GOODS AND SERVICES TAX FOR WHAT i am already paying for in supply charges
Lookfar
19th Oct 2020
8:48pm
Mitch, it was quite a few years ago that Howard, despite promising otherwise most stridently, got in the GST.
It was a Tax for All, but somehow the rich didn't have to pay it because if any one had any tiny little business, they were excused from the GST.
Well, poor people don't have enough money to run little bogus businesses, so we get to pay it but the rich do not.

Did you vote for Howard?
Only if you did not have you any right to object. imho.

Sympathies for your electricity situation.

L
Mariner
20th Oct 2020
5:02pm
I could see a reason for GST after Meg Lees exempted food and other fresh produce from it, have seen all other countries introducing it and you cannot for ever charge more in income tax alone. I did not like it but neither did I want to have higher taxes on my income then. But that was 21 years ago when I was working. I have not seen Labor rolling it back under Rudd although Kim Beazley promised us all a roll-back. Learn to live with it - the Kiwis have 15% on everything that moves. They seem to be happy, just voted Jacinda back in.
mitch
20th Oct 2020
1:03am
greg yes i checked out tango and you do pay what you say but give different answers17 OCT 18 OCT so it is still only $1.90 /day /WHAT i do not believe is you are home all the time and use what to keep it so low. As far as food prices going up if you believe the cpi is correct then you are nuts.IT is run by govts as needed and if you believe any one in govt then i rest my case.Why didn't prnsioners get a pay rise .THE CPI SAID SO .However politicians gave themselves a %2 increase and tax cuts so the cpi means nothing to govt
Greg
20th Oct 2020
11:57am
You are confusing, you said, "you do pay what you say" and than say, "but give different answers17 OCT 18 OCT". What' that about?

Look at this link: https://compare.energy.vic.gov.au/offers#/list/electric

Should give you Tango Energy, third one down, click on "view offer", that's mine. It's not on their website you have to phone them and ask for that specific plan.

WE ARE AT HOME MOST OF THE TIME - I don't know how to say it any different, since mid March we have been at home everyday. An hour or so once a week, sometimes twice a week for shopping, and two hours a day walking. We cannot visit family dues to border restrictions, when we did visit every few months it was for 5/6 days.

Being at home during the day hardly makes a difference to our power consumption, we don't generally have the TV on, the PC is on 24/7 anyway and you don't need lights during the day.

CPI - I'm sure the CPI is correct.....when taking into account the items that are used to get to the figure. What's maybe "wrong" is the items they use to come to that figure. Have you looked at what's contained in the CPI figures, you maybe surprised.
mitch
20th Oct 2020
5:52pm
greg i said look at your own words .on the 17th you said you paid peak from1 pm to 7 pm and the rest was at the low rate.On the 18 th the costs are not the same as you said earlier Different times and different charges it Does noyt really matter i believe you have low bills but how do youger it under $1.90/day Do you have solar?.
Greg
20th Oct 2020
7:44pm
I can't see where I said that, I copied and pasted the rates from my email from the company, I have two rates, Peak 31.02c 3.00pm to 9.00pm M-F and the rest of the time is low rate 19.69c.

Anyway, no solar. We don't even think about the cost, it's not like we turn things off, like I said, 2 TVs on standby, 2 PVRs on 24/7, PC on 24/7, one two door type fridge, oh and an amp and subwoofer in standby, microwave in standby.

We don't turn things off at the power point like some do, the wife likes to vacuum quite a lot. We just don't do anything special.

However is it that low?? We have gas hot water and gas heating, so that helps. (I did mention that) Remember though the gas heating has a fan to push the air through the house so some electricity is used and that happens sometimes during the day in winter, not regular though.
mitch
20th Oct 2020
12:06pm
food specials are only available to get you in store and generally it is over stock, or a poor seller ,or the company offering specials has made a deal for the supplier because nobody puts specials out without a reason. and what company would have specials without a motive and like i said most specials are not necessities.How often have you seen bread, milk go down and how many times have you seen items go up and a week later they are on special back to the price it was a fortnight ago
Greg
20th Oct 2020
3:41pm
You have a lot ti learn about supermarket operations and marketing. Yes they get you in the door but I'm not stupid enough to buy other items I don't need.

There are regular specials at supermarkets, these are prices that are agreed with the manufacturer and/ distributors. A large number of these products continue with these specials all year, usually with a few weeks between their cheaper price. The manufacturer is happy to sell at the low price, it's still profitable and when they are the normal price it's just cream on top for all. Anyone who buys those items when they are full price are fools, just throwing money away.

Of course fresh food isn't discounted or very rare but there are numerous items throughout all sections of a supermarket that are cheaper at different times.

Maybe the food YOU buy has increased in price but the vast majority of our food hasn't (one of my cereals went down recently).
Mariner
20th Oct 2020
4:56pm
On the mark Greg. I buy a lot of fresh fish, has been the same price for yonks, the only thing I find has gone up are high end beef and lamb cuts. Good advice not to buy stuff you do not need only because it's on special. There is a toothpaste on at the moment I like, recommended by my dentist, $4.40 off a tube, bought 6 of them and I am OK for 5 months (two of us using it). Same dentist. Buy what you need - not what they want you to buy.
Greg
20th Oct 2020
8:18pm
Mariner - There you go, we have fish but not much beef/lamb so maybe that's why we don't really notice much change in prices.

We do that whenever possible, all those items that have either no expiry or long shelf life we buy in bulk on special. Kellogg's cereals my wife likes are often half price, they have a year I think on them so buy months and months worth. Hair dye for her is $19 but often half price, buy two or three, they keep. Her fancy skin cream again is often half price and again it keeps fine.

I have to have Gluten Free food so that increases the costs a bit more but again when the specials are there (not half price unfortunately) I buy a few at a time.

It's just about being aware, being organised I guess, not wasting food, only buying what you WILL use (I know many who throw out food regularly). It really doesn't take much time and anyway.....I have plenty now that I'm retired.
mitch
20th Oct 2020
12:18pm
i have contacted anne ruston {welfare minister} about the
the cpi and she said all welfare recipitants increases are based on the cpi.
THIS is a lie and shows how the govt not only bullshits it also shows the CPI is only an excuse when the govt wants to use it for there benefit.If the cpi is down %3 then why did people on the dole get a %100 increase .WHY did single parents get a $550 increase if the CPI was down WHY did'nt every one on payments get the same based on the CPI that all centrelinc customers are supposed to get THE govt uses the cpi to discriminate and it is the pensioners carers and the disabled that are paying for there stupidity.
Greg
20th Oct 2020
3:50pm
Do you think everyone lies? You said I lied, now the welfare minister has supposedly lied too.

You know maybe it's YOU that doesn't understand how things work, in fact I'm sure it's you by your post.

The minister is correct, CPI is used to adjust welfare payments....except when the CPI goes down they generally don't adjust the payment.

The other payments you mentioned had nothing to do with the regular adjustments made in accordance with the CPI. Those payments were increased due to the virus to try to stimulate the economy.

I don't believe in them either but don't try to relate them to the CPI and other payment increases, that's ridiculous.
Youngagain
20th Oct 2020
5:55pm
It's true the CPI went down, Greg, but the cost of living for retirees definitely went UP. Perhaps that's what Mitch is referring to. His language suggests that maybe he struggles to understand the technical difference.
Farside
20th Oct 2020
4:16pm
poor old Mrs Flynn's winter power bill allegedly increased from $900 to $2500, but no detail on the billing days included or the kwh consumed. Why should we believe an incomplete media report?
Rae
24th Oct 2020
12:09pm
Needs investigating.
mitch
20th Oct 2020
6:10pm
greg the people on the dole got the $100 increase so why not everybody .Are people on the dole forced to look for work right now .I know of 25,000 jobs available and no one is taking them and why would they when going from $550 to$1100 THEN DOwn to$800 it is still more than my wife gets as a disabled person and it is more than i get as a carer.Note i am still working rather go on the old age pension How many people on the dole should be rewarded with extra money when they will not work.and you cannot tell me there are professional bludgers and single parents that never look for work.So why did the govt in there wisdom pay doleys, single parents.and jobseekers get paid morethan anyone else
BYE THE WAY I HAVE IT IN WRITING THA ANNE RUSTON TOLD ME PENSION BENIFITS ARE BASED ON THE C.P.I with some formula to work it out.THIS did not apply in this case as the govt decided to ignore there own cpi and reward every one on centrelinc payments over $10,000 while aged pensioners disabled and carers will get $2,000 when the other 2 payments are paid By the way thepeople on the dole have been getting an extra $250 for how long and when will it end.
Lookfar
20th Oct 2020
6:52pm
Mitch, the Govt introduced these special Stimulus payments to the sector they thought would spend, in order to save the economy!

They found that old folk do not spend their stimulus money so could/would not help the economy so gave no more stimulus to old folk, as the old folk for whatever reason, - reason not important, - their job was to save the economy, - the old folk didn't spend their stimulus money so got no more.
The unemployed, - the which were set at 5% in the way our economy used to work, never had enough jobs, - which did not stop the dole bashers bashing them, - we will always have bigots, but most people don't realise that we have created a group of very angry young folk who will cost us a lot more than had we paid or re-organised our economy to have plenty of jobs.
Whatever, another issue, but maybe you can think about that.
Farside
20th Oct 2020
9:06pm
old folk are now getting more than than those on jobseeker plus the allowance so all is good in the world and natural order restored; sometimes they old folk don't realise how well they are doing.
mitch
20th Oct 2020
6:17pm
greg Tell me any politician that does not lie '.IF you believe any politician tells the truth then you are a dreamer I also think your shopping is done on a budget that is why you do not see cost increases because once you spend a certain ammount that is it.THerefore i feel sometimes you will go without to keep in your budget guidelines
Greg
20th Oct 2020
8:07pm
Yes I'm well aware politicians tell lies, but you're talking about the CPI and how it's formulated and how welfare is adjusted using the figure. You can find all the information online, it's in black and white and you can even go back in time and see all the old increases as per the CPI. It's not hidden, it's not a lie.

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) fell 1.9% this quarter, hence payments didn't increase. They could have actually reduced your payment 1.9% but they didn't did they and I believe they are now actually making a special payment/s aren't they to help with increased costs?
We certainly don't shop on a budget, again we never think about the costs of food, of anything really, what we need that week we buy. My wife works out a menu for the week and we buy the required food for that week, sometimes we need to go twice a week for the fresh food but we have never said we can't afford to buy something this week.

So again, we DO NOT go without, I have calculated a $50,000 py living allowance going forward and increasing with inflation to carry us until we are 90, at that point it would be pension only. After four years we haven't got near $50K, around $42k and $38k without trying.

Like I said elsewhere just had landscaping done, new PC, new shed and blinds (none of which was essential)
mitch
20th Oct 2020
6:17pm
greg Tell me any politician that does not lie '.IF you believe any politician tells the truth then you are a dreamer I also think your shopping is done on a budget that is why you do not see cost increases because once you spend a certain ammount that is it.THerefore i feel sometimes you will go without to keep in your budget guidelines
mitch
20th Oct 2020
6:23pm
Who said the cpi went dowm Wasnt it the same guy who said he had 2 billion dollars to fire victims.[Never even a $1 was put aside for the fire victims] the same guy who stole over $750,000 for a holiday in hawai MORRISON and his govt has lied about everything and if you believe anything this govt says THEN FOOL YOU
mitch
20th Oct 2020
6:36pm
well you have just confirmed how stupid you are,IF THE GOVT GAVE EVERYONE IN AUST THAT IS ON CENTRELINC PAYMENT S then the cpi is used as it is supposed to be.SO TELL ME WHY SOMEONE ON THE DOLE, should be payed more than anyone else on welfare IRREGAURDLESS OF THE REASONS and single parents.I have worked for several companies that have gone and the govt did not come in and reward me with an extra anything and when i was younger there was no dole.YOU WORKED
Lookfar
20th Oct 2020
7:17pm
The reason is, Mitch, that the old folk would not spend their stimulus money, so the govt gave them no more. - we were warned, - "this extra money is for you to spend" but the majority of us thought only of themselves and kept the money in the bank or wherever.

I guess it could be seen like a job, - the govt gives you extra money to spend and you don't so you lose the job, - fair enough?

But those on newstart or whatever spent their money and helped save Australia, so they keep on getting that money, the old folks let the country down, so didn't get any more.
Greg
20th Oct 2020
7:54pm
Mitch, these payments WERE NOT based on CPI, nothing to do with any regular increase or whatever. As I and Lookfar said the payments were to stimulate the economy, they are not permanent and are being reduced back to where they were.

I didn't agree with them getting the increase, certainly not the 100% increase but the idea is they will spend the money, those people generally WILL spend the money, older people are likely to think about the extra more and store it away for when/if they need it, never use it and pass it on to the kids probably. I'm making generalisations, of course there's always exception.
Farside
20th Oct 2020
9:11pm
wow, you must be old mitch or ineligible when you were younger. It's been available since 1945.

https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/BN/2012-2013/SSPaymentsUnemployment/AppendixB/AppendixBTable1
mitch
20th Oct 2020
9:28pm
Iam sorry you boys {farside and greg| YOU do not watch a current affair as it showed that pensioners do spend the money they get and are still struggling ALSO IF you read what some of the people on newstart have said thanks to the extra money for doing nothing they now have money in the bank. caught up with there bills. and 1 guy has bought a car.iWE ARE PENSIONERS and have a second mortgage to get by .2 people on the dole living together and sharing expences are $200 better of plus rent relief on the dole than a married couple.I do not know where you get pensioners do not spend THEY HAVE NO CHOICE, THE BILLS AND FOOD ARE ESSENTIALS AND HAVE TO BE PAID JUST LIKE YOU AND$700 a week for a couple does not go far.especially when paying for a second mortgage.Before you say it is my choice then think again Due to a disability the money was essential for treatmentI;I Would like you to tell me why the unemplOyed are treated better than people who not only fought for this country but payed taxes for over54 years HOW MANY PEOPLE ON THE DOLE CAN SAY THAT .NOT MANY I BET.SINGLE PAREMNTS SHOULD NOT BE REWARDED FOR HAVING CHILDREN THEY CANNOT AFFORD ,SO WHY ARE THEY REWARDED AND DO NOT FORGET THE COMPANIES THAT RECEIVED FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE ARE BRAGGING ON THERE PROFITS/11 company said it made 16 million dollars profit of which the GOVT gave them 12 million of it.How many of these companies will return any money given to them NONE
Greg
20th Oct 2020
11:43pm
mitch - I can appreciate you're doing it tough and for that I'm sorry but there's millions of people in this country and guess what........plenty are far worse off too. Of course plenty are far better off, that's life, that's common around the world.

Please don't get too hung up on what you see on ACA, media love to beat-up stories and again they are talking to one, two or maybe just a few people. There's millions on different welfare payments, plenty save some money, plenty spend every little bit and always want more. My mother was on her own and manged fine in her own unit, others as couples who get a lot more pension struggle. There's a million stories out there mate, ACA gives you a sliver of them.
Farside
21st Oct 2020
12:02am
You are right mitch, I do not watch a current affair but your point is what exactly – those on Jobseeker should not have received stimulus money during covid? Single parents and kids should not receive welfare? Pensioners are the only cohort deserving of social security? Do you really think two singles on welfare received more than two like pensioners during 2019/20 or will do during 2020/21?

Many of us have paid taxes, and in your case congratulations on 54 years. It just means you don't get pursued for not paying your taxes. We would love to be able to draw down on taxes paid over the years to ease the finances but it's not going to happen any time soon.
Greg
20th Oct 2020
11:36pm
diamond - "No one else believes you either. Biggest load of BS I have ever read."

Still think that???
mitch
21st Oct 2020
1:50am
YEs the dole was introduced in 1945 for males only and only for a short time.iand then taken off At the moment the dole is*$800 which is more than i get .I get $712 They also get $715 for the cost of living concession while pensioners got$215.While i understand they need an increase but it should not be more than a carer.receives.remember that pensioners are home %95 of the time and so is everyone else or less so why should they get 3 times more than us when our bills are the same or more if you have medical costs and travel costs and delivery cost for the aged People on the dole if they dont want to work are rewarded and people who want work will eventually if they are not fussy until the rightjob comes along
Farside
21st Oct 2020
7:15pm
mitch you overlook jobseeker is $565 and it is only the temporary covid allowance that has paid Jobseekers more than the pension. So be assured for 2019/20 and 2020/21 pensioners will still be paid more, even without taking the pensioner covid stimulus into account.
mitch
21st Oct 2020
2:04am
you go on and on about the cpi and it is bullshit.THIS IS FRPOM THE HORSES MOUTH ANDYOU DOT UNDERSTAND.ANNE RUSTON THE PERSON ANSWEABLE TO WELFARE FOR THE CP.I SAID ALL CENTRELINC PAYMENTS ARE BASED ON THE CP.I IF THAT WERE TRUE THEN EVERY ONE SHOULD HAVE RECEIVED THE SAME INCREASE .IN PAYMENTS I HAVE THIS IN WRITING FROM HER.Did every one receive the same payments or not.IF NOT IT MEANS THE GOVT CHANGED ITS POLICY ON HOW PAYMENT UNCREASES WERE BASED AND SEGREGATED. THE pensioners who paid there taxes were shafted and DOLE people that do not pay taxes
are rewarded because they will spend more.THATS the biggest bullshit reason to pay them more than the people who payed there way and still are
mitch
21st Oct 2020
4:45am
IF YOU LISTEN TO YOUR FAVOURITE MR MORRISON THEN YOU WOULD HAVE HEARD HIM SAY THE 2 x$750 stimulous were given to the people who got the least that they are receiving the payment because pensioners will spend it.i did not hear hat the %100 increase for the dole were spenders so where did you get that from.There is no reason other than discrimination why dollies and single parents get paid an extra $550/fn because if they cannot get a job before the virus they are certainly not going to look for work and from what i have been told at the time of the increase they were told that they did not have too look for work.there is at least 25000 jobs out there that i know of and no takers.ASfor single parents no one forced them to so are they all accidents I think not.I was brought up that if you have children then they are your responsibility not taxpayers The aged population who built this country and served this country during and after the war deserve to be treated better. I bet neither you greg or farside have ever been on strike because our generation got you the 38 hour week.penalty rates and leave loading .we worked longer hours than most people and now you reap the rewards What have the people on the dole or single parents done for this country that they should be treated better than they deserve while pensioners go with out because they do not spend.We still pay for food, electricity ,gas, council rates ,insurance, emergency services levy, rego ,water rates, ambulance cover, NBN, petrol or taxis or home delivery just like everyone else WHAT ELSE DO YOU DSPEND YOUR MONEY ON .If something breaks down most pensioners have to make do and go without something else to save the money to replace the broken item.what else do doleys pay for more than us,there booze and drugs and video games or not but it is not spent on looking for work. or single parents getting a job and putting there children in free baby care.IT is there choice to have children so why do they get paid for doing it.1 MAYbe a mistake but after that there should be no mistakes yet the govt gives them extra money for each child they have and don't forget if they have children with more than 1 father they get %18 of the mans pay before tax by 2 and if they earn {father} $1000 dollars per week then the mother gets $720extra although they might lose a little of there pension
mitch
21st Oct 2020
4:56am
gtoo farside ,I DID NOT SAY ANYONE SHOULD NOT GET WELFARE IF THEY DESERVE IT ,I SAID ACCORDING TO THE GOVTS WAY OF INCREASING CENTRELINC PAYMENTS IS BY THE CPI AND EVERYONE SHOULD BE TREATED EQUAL ACCORDING THE CPI AND NO MATTER WHAT THE REASON THERE SHOULD NOT BE DISCRIMINATION JUST BECAUSE YOU ARE OLD OR DISABLED OR A CARER OR UNEMPLOYED OR A SINGLE PARENT IF IT IS GOOD FOR 1 THEN IT SHOULD BE THE SAME FOR EVERYONE As stated our living cost are more than you think and unemployed are still getting $250 extra pensioners nothing extra.
Farside
21st Oct 2020
7:24pm
chill mitch, because you want more does not mean that others should live or die in penury below the poverty line. Be assured for 2019/20 and 2020/21 pensioners will still be paid more, even without taking the pensioner covid stimulus into account.

And you did say "SINGLE PAREMNTS SHOULD NOT BE REWARDED FOR HAVING CHILDREN THEY CANNOT AFFORD" ... so what would you do to these children that find themselves in this situation through no fault of their own?
Lookfar
24th Oct 2020
5:38am
You do not understand Mitch, the unemployed, not having enough money to live on, spent all their stimulus money, - keeping the economy going, the OPs did not spend theirs, so they let the team down and the govt wasted no more money on them, - is that so hard to understand?

Shout as much as you like, that is the reality, your judgemental knee jerks are irrelevant, the stimulus money was and is to save our economy, not to upset your personal prejudices, the which do nothing to help the economy.

If you want to be helpful, focus on stopping the govt from reducing the stimulus.

Just remember, what goes around comes around, that is the economy.
mitch
21st Oct 2020
7:41pm
I I do not know where you get your information but newstart get$800 until december or january and we get $712 each Tell me what the people on the dole or jobseekers get more than pensioners .THEY GOT$1500 to be on standbye for there job.Iam sure lots of people will be laid off and have been laid of prior to the virus which is what this govt let in.GOINGby your attitude you think every who does nothing is entitled ,Have you ever been laid of or the people who you worked for went back to where they get cheaper labour ,If so did you get $1500 for being laid off.THE POINT IS SHIT HAPPENS so what right do people get paid extra for doing nothing.Why can;t they go and pick fruit work for a living. 25,000 needed and no applicants means the dole bludgers will stay on the dole with safety. i have never been out of work and did jobs i did not like but this generation looks for ways not to work and the more that they get on the dole the less will work.Are jobseeker getting $565 now. NO so stop lying about what they get now. and you do not know if it is going back to %565 when stimulous payments stop unless you have a crystal ball.Have you been told it is going back to what it was and if so by who .
Greg
21st Oct 2020
8:27pm
"the Coronavirus Supplement will be available at $250 per fortnight until 31 December 2020."

https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/news/how-coronavirus-supplement-and-eligibility-some-income-support-payments-are-changing#:~:text=Changes%20to%20the%20Coronavirus%20Supplement,fortnight%20until%2031%20December%202020.
Farside
22nd Oct 2020
2:08pm
mitch there is a good chance the generation you are so critical of might just be the one your generation raised with 318,000 of registered unemployed being 55 or older. That excludes the mature aged workers underemployed (more than one hour in previous fortnight) or ineligible for jobseeker support. There are plenty of reasons these people are not picking fruit for a living, lockdowns and border closures aside, but packing up and travelling for a short term gig that barely covers expenses is not going to persuade many but the adventurous and mobile.
mitch
21st Oct 2020
10:11pm
i know as stated earlier they are on $800 but farside thinks they are back to $565.oo and i predict that on the 31st of december. although against the cpi they will get an increase .IF they think more money will help them get a job they are dreaming .I doubt it.this is from a govt that is buying votes .PEOPLE only remember the money they get and not who paid for it, and it is not them and like i said there is work out there but nobody wants the job.PERSONALY i think if someone does not work for at least 1 year then they should be conscripted . THERE WAS CONSCRIPTION when i grew up and then it will be a choice.GET A JOB OR BE PLACED IN 1 OF THE FORCES AT LEAST THAT way they are giving back AND BE ON BETTER MONEY AND PAYING TAX INSTEAD OF SPENDING TAXPAYERS TAX
Farside
22nd Oct 2020
2:11pm
mitch I can tell the difference between the jobseeker and covid allowances, even better I can tally them up and know who gets paid more in 2019/20 and 2020/21. Not sure that conscription in the ADF works for the 318,000 over 55 but I have no problem with government creating work programs.
Lookfar
22nd Oct 2020
3:07pm
Mitch, you have been brought up with the work ethic, so you think everybody must work the same, so somebody studying Arts is not worth feeding.

Consider, Leibnitz invented Calculus, so all tunnels and bridges plus amazingly so much else would be impossible without Leibnitz's invention, - everybody contributes, only the Multi Billionaires take more than they contribute.

Save your ire for those, the Real parasites, not the ordinary folk, joblost because the Govt mandates 5% based on the defunct "Economic Liberalism', an economic "theory" developed by exactly those super rich - 36 families etc. now called Neo Liberalism, who now own 98% of everything, and virtually never pay tax.

You are turning on your brotherhood of community supported folk to tear down any advantage each may have on you, without understanding their particular requirements.

What you don't realise is that these super rich, the .01%, manipulate the poor against the poor because they believe the poor should all die, including you and me..

It is, in my opinion, extremely important that every normal person understand that we are in the grip of a very small number of people who own almost everything, and who have a very extremist philosophy, Stirnerite Anarchism.

I would be wasting my time giving you links, if you don't care enough to look up that link, Yourself, you won't understand it, but what you are doing yourself, - trying to turn poor against poor, plays absolutely into their razor edged hands, - so that they can such Clench.

On to work programmes, only those that increase productivity are effective, and only that productivity that helps Australia, - the ADF is a defence force, only those who are prepared to die for Australia will be effective, and defence makes nothing, - is a drain on the economy, - buys armaments overseas, grows nothing, plants nothing, harvests nothing. - So one should think much more deeply about putting unemployed into defence, - in america it has lead to mass shootings, How will that help us?
mitch
22nd Oct 2020
5:31pm
imam not saying people should be entitled to welfare if they have earned it. That means working and paying taxes. like everyone else. How many single parents have contributed and doleys have contributed.NOWADAYS not many.and as far as conscription goes i did 9 years and did not do that to be neglected in my later years.THE POINT IS irregaurd less whether they are single parents. newstart .jobseekers. carers. disabled or pensioners /ALL CENTRELINC PERSONEL SHOULD ALL GET PAY RISES AT THE SAME RATE .THAT IS WHAT THE CPI IS FOR .,BUT NO LONGER AS SOME RECEIVED SPECIAL TREATMENT AT THE EXPENCE OF OTHERS If forced into the forces at least is giving them employment and helping the economy because as some one said it is the people on the dole who are the spenders.So let them earn the money and spend there own money not taxpayers.I do not think you have done anything in AUSTRALIA towards protecting it therefore you should not comment on something that is a necessary evil.ONE thing i agree with is with this govt in particular they certainly look after the rich .OUT of all the companies that received financial aid i would bet anything that the company bosses and owners gained the most and if not then they are lying.LOOK UP COMPANIES WHO YEARLY REPORT STATES PROFITS If they have profits from being shut down where do you think they got the profits from.
mitch
22nd Oct 2020
5:41pm
Ianm not talking about 55 year olds and if you think i am then you are an idiot .Go to a centrelinc office and look around.the majority are 18 to 40 and a lot are fulltimers and believe me unless you have worked for centrelinc you would not know,MOSTpeople 55 and over probably have worked most of there years.You also commented on the single parents and there children and i know that the majority of children follow there parents footsteps and either end up on the dole or pregnant.IF you do not believe me go to centrelinc and ask them who are the most common people who apply for benefits prior to the virus
Lookfar
22nd Oct 2020
6:19pm
Mitch, - who are you talking to?, - you seem all over the place.
Best if you start "Lookfar", or "Farside" or whoever and direct your comments to whoever.

And no drinking before posting Please!

Cheers,
Geoff.
mitch
22nd Oct 2020
10:01pm
LOOKFAR FARSIDE AND GREG obviously idiots who probably are prepared to say anything without knowledge because you have never worked for centre linc or done anything for this country except make excuses for everything.GET a real job join the army or get a job at centre link and listen to the excuses why people cannot get a job or how many women get drunk and pregnant and do not know who knocked them up .GREG AND LOOKFAR AND FARSIDE have plenty to say but nothing to say what they have done
I am old enough to know what i am talking about and my concience is clear that i earnt what i get and tell me .all 3 of you What have the 3 of you done for anyone else .If you cannot tell me, and you are not on welfare then you do not have the right to say why anyone gets anything because you have not earned the right.Wait until you pay for your retirement and like seeing people who get paid more for sitting on there arse all there lives .t
There are jobs out there that are available but the young adults will not leave home so maybe there should be a seperate allowance for babies.who cannot leave home.HAVE ANY OF YOU 3 BEEN ON THE DOLE OR WELFARE .IF NOT THEN SHUT UP AS YOU ONLY KNOW WHAT OTHERS SAY WHERE I HAVE BEEN THERE.
Farside
23rd Oct 2020
12:56am
dealing with a few issues are we mitch? Inductive thinking and envy are a combination that makes a reasoned conversation difficult. But please feel free to debate my points with supportable facts rather than conjecture.
mitch
23rd Oct 2020
11:12am
to farside
What havei said that is not a fact ,why dont you answer some facts instead of dribbling shit .yourself.DO you think i am JEALOUS
JEALOUS OF WHAT.,
thinking people should work and pay taxes and not live on tax payers money.
THINKING women should not get pregnant if they cannot bring them up themselves because if you think children deserve being brought up on welfare then you are stupid
Thinking that all people on welfare especially those who did what is expected of them are treated as good as if not better than everyone ellse on welfare.THEY EARNT IT and until you are on a pension you have to live it to know.ARE YOU MARRIED
DOES YOUR WIFE WORK OR DO YOU HAVE CHILDREN,OR ARE YOU SINGLE/HAVE YOU EVER HAD A CHILD OUT OF WEDLOCK I am guessing not and i am guessing you think you are a know it all and have never done anything worthwhile for anyone but yourself.and pronbably your parents worked all there lives and you were a single child SPOILT
Farside
23rd Oct 2020
9:43pm
mitch, it would take two of you to make up a half-wit. The topic is about power bills and look where you have gone. Your personal attacks are as offbase as your sweeping statements and your senses of reason and empathy. You have some serious unresolved psychological baggage that you should talk to a therapist about. In the meantime do yourself a favour and stay away from sharp objects.
mitch
24th Oct 2020
1:14pm
tto farside
Answer the questions or are you unable'
OUT of the 55s and over how many went in the defence force?Out of the people on the dole how many was in the defence force .I would bet the over 55s would have more ex servicemen and women ALSO FOOD came up as well as power bills and i am surprised that some peoples food bills have not gone up Reduction of the size of packages and contents has gone down but prices remain the same.Take cadbury chocolate a few tears back chocolate was 350 grams and now it is the same price yet it is now 190 gram.This has happened to a lot of items so maybe if the food bill has not gone up but what they get for the same money..I am not envious of any one but i am pissed of when i see neighbours sitting at home and getting paid more than a carer and for doing what? irregaurdless for any reason .I am pissed of at people like you think you know how pensioners spend and yet you are not a pensioner so what you know is not from life experiences..I am pissed of that the govt can give themselves3 pay rises and 3 tax cuts yet the cpi is down.i am pissed off that single parents who cannot commit to marriage have children and bring them up on welfare with no consideration to how the children will be brought up.Iam also pissed off with people like you who do nothing for anyone but yourself and one day unless you are wealthy and think your shit does not stink then even a half wit knows it does.
Farside
24th Oct 2020
9:26pm
mitch, I am sure DVA or RSL can help you with former ADF members on unemployment benefit and how many are over 55. Perhaps at same time explain to DVA or RSL why you think retired ex servicemen and women are bludgers.

If booting the offspring of dropkick parents to the kerb makes you feel better then have at it. I don't think kids should bear the sins of the parents but you might find some that agree with you.

Btw Cadbury 350g $6.30 16/1/2017 now $5 at Woolworths, you're welcome. Search cadbury 350g or try here https://www.woolworths.com.au/shop/productdetails/693528/cadbury-dairy-milk-packed-with-crunchie
mitch
24th Oct 2020
10:11pm
to farrside .
i know you do not watch a current affair but i have seen several times where 15vto 17 year old girls are on the show either pregnant or with children and guess what they live at home with there parent on benefits or the father 16 or 17 on the dole and i myself have seen it several times in my over 55 years If you do not think it happens then look around and like i said what life is there for children of parents who never work If you do not know anybody on welfare and the facts about them then you should shut your mouth until you have asked them if there children have a better chance at life than a married couple or single who work.AFTER ALL AREN''T THEY GETTING FREE CHILD CARE ISN'T THAT part of the reason cpi was low so people could get taxpayers to pay for there childcare
mitch
25th Oct 2020
3:39am
farside cadbury chocolate was $5 back on the16/1/17 at woolworths and IGA and you say it still is $5 IS that on special or what is the normal price now.WHat was a 190 gram block back then .i cannot seem to find it. and has the price changed from a 200 gram block to a 190 gram block also as you know so much what else has been reduced in size in the last few years .LOOK THAT UP.
NO SPECIALS
Farside
25th Oct 2020
7:39pm
mitch, according to Woolies that chocolate block was $6.30 in 2017, and is now regular price $5. Follow the link if you are able rather than deny yourself. They even show "prices dropped" at
https://www.woolworths.com.au/shop/search/products?searchTerm=cadbury%20350g.

Feel free to search out more chocolate bargains on your own, I have told you how and given you a link to start. I really do not care whether chocolate is 190g or 200g tho it does seem important to you in discussing the cost of energy. Good luck with your grizzles over pregnant teens and single mums – the zeal for punishing those kids must make that chocolate taste even sweeter.
mitch
26th Oct 2020
1:10am
to farside first off i am not grizzling like you say i am stating facts but you would not know that because you are too dumb.What have i said that is a lie youf....wi t As far as the chocolate bar goes it is to show things are getting smaller yet still the same price ;200 gram chocolate was $3.50 and now it is 180 gram and still the same price $3.50
ALSO after investigating there is %15 to %20 of items in supermarkets that are lighter than 3 years ago and still the same price.Also out of 54 cans of food checked only 4 were correct weight the other 50 were underweight THAT means you are paying more for less AT LEAST I CAN USE A REAL NAME AND I THINK you stick up for the unemployed and single parents because you are one of them or have been .LIKE I SAID UNLESS YOU ARE IN THE SAME POSITION YOU WOULD NOT KNOW ,.ARE YOU?


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