Flick Electric CompanyThe Blog

The inside info: how we calculate your Freestyle savings

As one of the very few electricity retailers in NZ offering households access to the wholesale electricity market, we get ridiculously excited to see our Freestylin’ Flicksters save money.

Sure, sometimes spot prices move upwards, but we know that in the long run, buying electricity at the wholesale price is a smart way to go. And it’s a satisfying feeling for us here at Flick HQ to know that we’re providing a fair price for electricity to Kiwis.

Our estimates show that savings for our Flicksters on our spot price plan, Freestyle – especially those who’ve been with us for a year or longer – are flickin’ awesome. From 11 June 2016 – 11 June 2017 (before we felt the impact of these unusually dry winter conditions), Flick customers saved an average $479. And since the Dry Winter kicked in, that’s only dropped to an average $398 (for the year until 16 July 2017). Definitely nothing to be sniffed at!

In the interest of full transparency, we give our Flicksters an idea of what they’re saving (or not saving!) with Flick. But, where do we get all our numbers from?

Show me the money

Most of the time, Flicksters will switch over to us from another retailer to whom we can easily compare, and when this happens, calculating their savings is pretty straightforward. We produce a savings estimate for customers based on information provided by Consumer NZ’s Powerswitch, which is NZ’s only complete, independent source of information on electricity retailers and their pricing plans.

We compare your Flick bill with your previous retailer’s standard comparable published plan at the time you joined Flick, to generate an estimated savings figure each week. We take into account any price changes to your old retailer’s plan.

The comparison also takes into account whether you’re a standard or low user, your metering set up (for example, whether your have an uncontrolled or controlled meter), and any prompt payment discounts available to you (have a read of the Guide to Bullsh*t Power Deals to find out what we really think about prompt payment discounts…). It doesn’t include any special or one-off plans that aren’t publicly available, additional discounts such as dual fuel, e-bills or extra direct debit discounts, or early termination fees for breaking fixed term contracts.

If you’ve moved into a new property, we’re unable to make estimates using your previous retailer’s information because you don’t have a previous retailer at that address to compare to. We’re also unable to make a direct comparison with your previous retailer if you were on a non-traditional plan from Powershop, Electric Kiwi or Globug. And of course, if your previous retailer is no longer in business, we’re again unable to make a direct comparison.

In these above cases, we compare your Flick bill with the standard comparable published plan of the biggest electricity retailer in your area, based on information provided by Powerswitch. In the absence of specifics, we reckon this is the fairest way to provide you with guidance on how you’re doing with Flick.

But, how?!

To estimate what you would have paid with your previous retailer, each week we take the number of units your household used that week and multiply this by the relevant rate from your comparable retailer based on the above approach. In doing this, we include all costs and GST. We then deduct your Flick bill for the same period from our calculation of what you would have paid, to calculate your estimated savings.

If you’re personally tracking your savings from season to season, it’s worth noting that usage plays a heavy part in your total bill cost. You might use a whole lot less power in a mild winter for example, compared with a very cold and long winter. Lifestyle factors, such as holidays, employment and family changes can also have a major impact on your usage patterns, so it’s important to factor kWh used into your calculations to truly compare one season’s bills with another, regardless of which power company you were with.

What happens to my savings figure if I move properties?

If you’ve been a Flick customer for a while but you’ve recently moved properties, it’s worth noting that the savings figure displayed on your bill and dashboard relates only to your current property. To calculate your total savings since joining Flick, simply add the savings figure of your previous property’s final bill to that of your new property’s most recent bill. Voilà!

What if I switch to FIXIE?

In that case, you’ll still see your savings info from your time ridin’ the market. But, because savings can only be calculated for spot pricing, your savings info won’t be updated in your tools while you’re on FIXIE.

And when I don’t save?

If you pay more with Flick than you would have paid with a previous supplier, we will deduct that amount from your all-time savings figure. If you flick back through your bills from week to week on the Bills tab of your dashboard, you might notice that the all-time savings figure in the bottom right corner – the one that tells you what you’ve saved since you joined Flick – doesn’t change. This is because this up-to-date savings figure is always related to your most recent bill, regardless of which bill you’re looking at.

Still got questions?

Head over to our Facebook page or leave a comment below. We love hearing from our #CleverFlickers!