NSW Gross Metering – Are you part of the 144,000+ homes reverting to Net Metering on December 31st 2016?

NSW Gross Metering – Are you part of the 144,000+ homes reverting to Net Metering on December 31st 2016?

Gross Metering – Where all your solar power generated is exported to the grid, the energy retailer pays you for the power at rates generally of 20c up to 66c per kWh. You then buy back power at regular rates of around 8-20c per kWh.

Net Metering – Net Meters record the amount of energy you export to the grid as well as the energy imported from the grid. Typically only your excess solar power is exported to the grid (where your solar power is used by your home needs first and only the remainder is exported).

On December 31st 2016, the NSW Solar Bonus Scheme is legislated to end. This date has not changed since the introduction of the legislation. Customers who remain eligible to receive the Solar Bonus Scheme tariff payments will continue to receive them until 31 December 2016.

Participants in the scheme will not receive the Solar Bonus Scheme tariff payments for any generation that occurs after 31 December 2016.

If you currently have a gross meter (majority of customers – All your solar is exported to the grid), you will need to change over to net metering (use your solar first, excess is sent to the grid, power exported and power imported is metered separately).

If you require your meter changed from gross to net, Natural Solar have Level 2 Accredited Service Electricians who are able to do this for you.

When considering what to do after the Solar Bonus Scheme ends on 31st December 2016 (or 1st January 2017), keep the following in mind:

  1. Instead of getting credits on your electricity bill in the tens to hundreds of dollars, you’re likely to start getting charged a couple hundred dollars as a result of not getting the Solar Bonus Scheme feed in tariff anymore.
  2. In most cases, participants in the Solar Bonus Scheme typically have small solar installations of around 1.5kW (typically 6 panels) to 2kW (typically 8 panels). These sizes of systems are typically only really useful for single person or very low energy households with solar hot water systems.
  3. You will be importing energy from the grid at regular retail prices of around 16c-28c per kWh (depending on whether you have time of use metering or not).

We generally recommend the following courses of action:

  1. Increase the size of your solar array and use the solar power generated in your home first.
  2. When increasing the size of your solar array, at the same time, add a home battery to store your excess power, preventing you from needing to import a majority of your power (especially at night time).
  3. If you haven’t already, shift your higher power consumption usage to day time where your solar panels can cover your energy usage. Generally you would do the following during the day to reduce your peak rate power consumption:
    • Washing Machine
    • Clothes Drier
    • Air Conditioning
    • Pool Pump / Cleaner
    • Hot Water Systems (if not already running on off peak rate power)

Interested in adding additional solar panels to your home? Check out our standard solar packages page here.

Interested in adding a battery to your home so that you can shave your peak power usage down to almost (if not) nothing? Check out our Tesla Powerwall packages page here or get an instant Tesla Powerwall and Solar System quote here.


These costs are based on the SA Power network in Adelaide but prices may vary depending on your circumstances. This comparison assumes a general energy usage of 4000kWh/year for a residential customer on Energy Locals Time of Use Tariff – (TOU – Peak, Off-Peak & Solar Sponge).

The reference price is set by the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) for a financial year in relation to electricity supply to residential customers in the distribution region and is based on an assumed annual usage amount. Any difference between the reference price and the unconditional price of a plan is expressed as a percentage more or less than the reference price. The terms of any conditional discounts are shown, along with any further difference between the reference price and the discount applied if a condition is met, expressed as a percentage more or less than the reference price.