It’s no secret that utilities are some of the most expensive ongoing costs households face. But one Australian bank is hoping to make things easier for its customers by offering cashback for their bills.
Recent research commissioned by ING has revealed that 7 in 10 Australian households have seen the cost of utilities like water, gas and electricity climb in the last three years.
And despite this, a quarter of respondents claimed to have never compared utilities bills, with one in five stating they’ve never changed suppliers.
In response to this, the ING has revealed its plan to help its Orange Everyday customers by providing 1% cashback on their gas, water, and electricity bills. The offer will be effective from 1 December 2021.
The cashback offer will be capped at $100 per financial year for customers, but every dollar counts when it comes to covering the cost of utilities, especially in winter.
ING's Orange Everyday Benefits will change as follows:
|Existing offering||New offering (effective 1 December 2021)|
Customers who meet the eligibility criteria each month will be able to access the below in the following month
|Customers who meet the eligibility criteria each month will be able to access the below in the following month:
Managing the cost of utilities
It’s evident that the latest COVID-19 outbreak may have increased pressures on some households, particularly those in heavily restricted LGAs. The latest data from the Australian Banking Association found that over 20,000 customers are already receiving hardship assistance since 8 July 2021.
And utilities are one of those ongoing expenses that can become overwhelming when financial pressure is applied to household budgets.
In response to the latest COVID-19 lockdown in New South Wales the Berejiklian government also re-introduced a temporary measure allowing households to increase the amount they can apply for to help pay their energy bills through the Energy Accounts Payment Assistance Scheme.
Those who are eligible may apply for up to $1,600 a year for gas and electricity, an increase on the standard $1,200.
George Thompson, Head of Daily Banking at ING, said: “It’s clear from the research and from what our customers are telling us that utility bills are a pain point but shopping around for a better deal requires time, something many of us just don’t have.
“We’ve launched this cashback offer as a way to help our customer effortlessly save on their everyday living costs so they can get on with the things that matter most to them.”
“According to the research Australian households are paying an average of $5,472 a year or $456 a month on their utility bills. With the ING utilities cash back offer the average Australian household could save more than $50 a year,” he said.
This is $50 that may be better served in Aussie savings accounts, or even in a homeowner’s offset account to help reduce mortgage interest.
- If you’re struggling and facing financial stress, it may be worth considering seeking independent advice from a financial adviser, or even a free financial counsellor via the National Debt Helpline.