Another Year, another chance to stock-up at last year’s prices!

by Admin

Well, it’s been more than a year since our last post. Sorry guys, we’ve been busy with ebug.co.za our homebug-like offering for estates and businesses. Hope you like it!

Once again we’re bringing you some AMAZING news. If you are connected through your municipality (sorry, if you pay Eskom it’s already too late, you had your rise in March) you still have less than 30 days left to TOP up your meter at last year’s rates – saving you possibly as much as 13%. Just like last year, you have to be clever about it – otherwise you might end up spending more.

The rule is exactly the same as last year you should buy units until you’re at the TOP of the BLOCK that you normally use. The blocks are determined by your municipality and possibly which ‘tariff’ you are on within your municipality.

Once again we want to answer the question – should I fill my tank before the price rise! YES YES YES! But it’s not as simple as filling your petrol tank before the monthly price change (which also you SHOULD do before Wednesday to save 52c/litre (according to Business Tech – or around R26 for a pretty average 50L tank). For your electricity it’s pretty much the same thing, but just imagine the Petrol pump charged you MORE if you bought over 100 litres in a month…oh and your tank is unlimited in size and doesn’t cost you anything to carry around! That’s what it’s like with prepaid meters, you can buy extra now, at the old rate, and then use them up after the price has risen – saving you money!

We’ve updated our handy spreadsheet tool for City of Cape Town. City Power (Jo’burg) — I’ll try to add some others later today – but if your’s is missing, please ask in the comments and (if you can) send us where the tariff is online and we’ll update it for you.

A quick run through – for City of Cape Town – say you normally spend R500 per month, then in 2015 that bought you 284 units each month. If you buy R1055 this month, you’ll get 600 units – all at the same price (R1.76). After 1st July you’ll be paying R1.88 per unit – so any extra units you buy you’ll be saving 0.12c each unit — okay, it’s only R37… but it’s something!

On the other hand if you currently spend more than R1060 every month, then you should buy AS MUCH AS YOU CAN. Every extra unit you buy, you’ll save 0.15c. So buy 1000 extra units and you’ll save R150. You just need to make sure that you carry on buying your allowance of 600 ‘cheaper’ units every month after – those 600 units cost R1125 after the price change. So this month buy as much as you can, then KEEP BUYING R1125 every month after that until you start to run out. Make sense?

Here’s a basic table of what you need to do:

City of Cape Town Domestic Prepaid 2016

Normally you spend…Under 1055Over 1055
Before the price rise each month buy1055more…
Then after the price rise, buy at least this every month01125

City of Joburg is ALOT more complicated – it has 4 different blocks of prices – so it can get VERY confusing. The same rule applies however – you should buy up to the top of the block that you ‘normally’ buy in. These blocks are at 500, 1000, 2000 and 3000 units every month — or looked at the other way around – spending R603, R1370, R2941 and R2984.  With the new tariffs these will change to R647, R1471, R3159 and R5353.

So put simply if you spend R400 on average per month, you (in total) spend R600 this month and then R0 after until you run out.

If you spend say R800 normally, then spend R1370 this month and then after the price make sure you spend at least R647 every month until your credits run low.

Joburg City Power Domestic Prepaid 2016

Normally you spend…Under 603603-13701370-29412941-4984Over 4984
Before the price rise each month buy603137029414984more..
Then after the price rise, buy at least this every month/0647147131595353

If you’re having problems please leave us a comment!

** We have to say the same warning as last time – if you get FREE BASIC units – then this probably isn’t a great idea! If you buy too much one month you might end up losing your allowance of free units, which will cost you MUCH more in the long run. For those you get free units, we’d always recommend only buying what you need every month – and make sure you ALWAYS collect your free units every month, even if you’re away – so just make sure you go to the shops and buy a basic level R10-100… every single month. Every year about 1 in 10 people who are entitled to free units doesn’t collect them, don’t be one of those people! Whether you are entitled to free units depends on your municipality – generally you have to be qualified as ‘indigent’ and must use under a certain amount every month or year… ask someone at your municipality if you think you aren’t getting what you deserve.

How to get cheap electricity from your municipality – Fill up your tank before July 1st (City of Cape Town)

by Admin

You’ve got until 1st July to top-up your meter at the old rates in any Municipality. But remember to keep buying the special ‘discounted’ units every month on the new tariff!

That’s right, we’ve updated our Energy Tariff fill-up calculator to include City of Cape Town (email/comment/shout if you want another municipality — preferably telling me where I can see the tariff online!)

After we’ve been asked by numerous people about our Eskom ‘fill up your tank’ post (FYI – that is now out of date, because Eskom’s increased it’s prices now!); we thought we’d update our amazingly useful spreadsheet with the city of Cape Town’s proposed tariffs. We’ve only included the basic City of Cape Town Domestic tariff (not the Lifeline one with free units, because it’s a pain to work out – as you’ll lose your free units if you spend too much!!).

Basically our advice boils down to 2 situations:

1. You spend Less than R850 every month — before July 1st you should spend a total of R922 every month – then not buy anything until you need it.

2. You spend more than R1100 every month – buy as much as you want, but make sure you keep spending at least R1050 every month after July (otherwise you’ll lose your cheaper units)

(if you spend between R850 and R1100 every month, there’s not really much in it for you, you just keep doing what you’re doing!)

As an example, let’say you spend R2000 every month – that buys you 1,117 units on the current tariff. The best thing to do would be to buy LOADS this month (as many as you want really), but then MAKE sure you keep buying at least 600 units every month after July – spending R1055 per month.

Otherwise you’ll be buying units for 186.81c this month to replace units that cost 175.90c next month. So you need to keep buying the ‘cheap’ units on the new tariff.

CT tariff now:
First 600 = 153.63c — you get 600 here (R922)
Over 600 = 186.81c – you get 577 here (R1078)

CT tariff from 1st July:
First 600 = 175.90c – keep buying these — R1055/mo
Over 600 = 213.90c – don’t buy these unitl you need them!

So on the default ‘3 months of saving’ – this is effectively spending R5,250 in June, buying you 2909 units (that’s 1732 more than normal). Then you keep buying R1055 every month – that’s 577 less than normal!. So after three months you’ve used up all those spare units – and saved yourself R469 (i.e. 15%). This is because you only paid R1.86 for each of these units, rather than R2.13.

If you stopped buying in July — then effectively you’d be using up these extra units  (which cost you R1.86 each) instead of buying the first 600 cheap units (at R1.75 even on the new tariff!).

FYI – these are subject to change if NERSA let’s Eskom get an additional 10% increase. But if anything, that will make it MORE important to buy units at the old rate.