Australian households spend an average of about $99 a week on energy, according to new data from the ABS.
Of the average energy bill, $39 was spent on electricity and gas and $60 a week was spent on petrol.
Energy costs represented 5% of the average gross weekly household income, but that ranged from 10% for low-income households to 3% for high-income households, with the latter category representing the top 20% of earners.
On average, low-income households spent $22 less on energy a week. From the ABS’ survey results, here’s how:
- Two thirds (66%) switched appliances off at the wall when not in use to reduce energy costs, more so than middle and high income households (61% and 52% respectively).
- 63% took shorter showers to reduce energy costs, more so than middle and high income households (58% and 51% respectively).
- One third (34%) used draft proof seals on doors and windows, more so than middle and high income households (30% and 29% respectively).
- Half of low income households (51%) used electric hot water systems (compared to 40% of high income households).
- Fewer households reported heating (25%) and cooling (10%) their home as the main contributors to household energy costs (compared to 30% and 16% of high income households)
- A quarter of households (26%) reported water heating as the main contributor to household energy costs (compared to 22% of high income households).
- Nine percent reported cooking as the main contributor to household energy costs, more so than middle and high income households (6% and 3% respectively).
Mortgagees tended to spend the most on energy, with the average mortgaged household spending $123 a week, compared to $94 for private renters, $85 for homeowners without a mortgage, and $56 for those in government housing.
The ABS noted a strong correlation between homeownership and the size of a household. Mortgaged households tended to comprise an average of 3.1 persons, compared to 2.1 persons for households without a mortgage and 2.5 persons for renters.
There’s more on the ABS.
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