Owners and Builders of new homes in Australia have complained of long delays in power meters being installed and electricity being connected to their properties after the introduction of the “Power of Choice” or Federal Contestable Metering legislation last year.
The AEMC has received a submission from the Housing Industry association detailing the complaints received and expressed their concern about the lengthy delays faced by new home owners and builders alike.
The new Federal Contestable Metering legislation enacted in late 2017 requires that power meters installed in newly build properties be smart meters, a new type of power metering device that records power consumption and sends that information to the supplier for billing.
The power retailers themselves are now responsible for switching over or installing new meters for clients. This change appears to have increased wait times for power meter installation from less than two weeks, to more than 16 weeks in some cases, longer than it’s taking builders to construct the home itself.
This has lead to builders of new homes in Australia being forced to power their sites with portable generators, and some families even having to continue using the generators after moving into their home. The estimated cost of the delays runs into the thousands, with the HIA reportedly estimating an average expense to the home owner of $2000 but has mentioned this number is likely to be higher depending on the state you’re living in.
The submission to the AEMC has stressed the need for much more speedy installation of power meters and ultimately power being connected to new residences, with their recommendation being that meters and power be up and running within 6 days of the initial request. The HIA has asked the AEMC to consider these changes a priority, and to make urgent changes that see power being connected within much more reasonable time frames.
Learn more about “Smart” Power Meters in Australia
It seems that “smart” power meters in Australia have been trouble from the start, including units exploding and catching fire. See the video above for more details.