This information is relevant for existing Premium Feed-in Tariff customers.
If you applied for the Premium scheme and your application was not accepted prior to the closure of the scheme, you are unlikely to be a customer under the scheme and the following information will not apply to you. In this case, you are likely to be receiving the minimum feed-in tariff that is set annually by the Essential Services Commission as a single-rate minimum feed-in tariff or a time-varying feed-in tariff. The minimum feed-in tariff is the only scheme in Victoria open to new applicants.
|Premium Feed-in Tariff|
(closed on 29 December 2011)
|Can I upgrade my system size?||No|
|Can I add solar panels (or other renewable energy systems) to my property and maintain my eligibility?||No|
|Can I change retailers?||Yes|
|If I move out of my residence, can I take my system with me and continue to receive the same rate?||No|
|If I move into a house where previous tenants were receiving the Premium Feed-in Tariff, can I claim this rate?||Yes|
|Can I put in a dedicated load?||No|
|Can I still claim the Premium Feed-in Tariff if my property is no longer my primary place of residence?||No|
|Can I replace different components of my system as long as I do not increase the generating capacity?||Yes|
|Can I renovate / demolish / build a new house on my property?||Generally allowed, however with restrictions. Find out more about building a new house below|
No. Existing customers under the PFIT scheme will forfeit their access to the scheme if they add generating capacity to their solar system through additional panels. The capacity of the panels must remain the same or less than what they were before the scheme closed to new applicants.
If customers do, however, still wish to add panels to their original generating capacity they will be able to move to the minimum feed-in tariff. Customers on the current minimum feed-in tariff have been receiving either a single-rate minimum feed-in tariff or a time-varying feed-in tariff.
This applies to the generating capacity of the panels rather than the inverter. While customers are allowed to install inverters that are larger than the inverter installed at the time of the scheme closure, it is the installation of extra panels that will make a customer ineligible for the PFIT scheme. It should be noted that an oversized inverter will not increase the generating capacity of your solar system, and in some instances may actually decrease its generating capacity.
No. The Premium Feed-in Tariff scheme is linked to the property where the system was installed. You cannot move the system to a new address and continue to access the scheme.
However, if the system remains on the property, under the Premium scheme the new owners or tenants would be eligible to access the same scheme as the previous owners.
Yes, you will be able to arrange with a retailer to receive the PFIT if you move into a property already accessing the scheme, as long as you do not increase the generating capacity of the existing system. If you add solar panels to the existing system you will forfeit your access to the scheme.
The scheme is linked to the property where the system was installed when the previous owners or tenants applied for the scheme. This means that any house that is signed up for the PFIT scheme can continue to access the respective rate until the end date of the scheme, provided other eligibility criteria are maintained. The PFIT ends on 1 November 2024.
Yes, if you wish to change retailers, you are able to arrange access to the scheme with your new retailer. However, make sure you research the rates and other terms and conditions offered by other electricity retailers prior to changing. Some retailers will offer a "top up" over and above the regulated minimum feed-in tariff rate. Not all retailers offer a "top up" or the same "top up". It is recommended that you consider the whole package being offered by the retailer, including supply rates, rather than just whether a "top up" rate is available to ensure you make the best choice for your circumstances.
You should also note that only retailers with more than 5,000 customers are required to offer the Premium Feed-in Tariff (PFIT) although retailers with fewer than 5,000 customers may choose to offer these rates.
Under the PFIT, retailers must offer a minimum of 60 cents per kilowatt hour for excess electricity exported into the grid.
A dedicated load is metered separately to the household's general usage. So the electricity generated by your solar PV or other renewable energy facility is not offset against the dedicated usage, only your general household usage. Therefore, your energy consumption and generation would not be net metered and all Victorian feed-in tariff schemes require net metering. This means that electricity consumption in the household must be offset against all solar PV or renewable energy generation. This can be compared with gross metering where generation from the panels does not offset your own usage. Customers are usually better off financially under net metering arrangements as offsetting your own use has the greatest value.
Speak to your retailer if you are considering installing a dedicated load. There may be other options available to you.
You will no longer be eligible for the scheme. When the scheme was open to new customers, it was only available to residential consumers who applied for their primary place of residence. If the property is no longer your primary place of residence, you will forfeit your access to the scheme.
If you have moved house, the new owners of the property can access the respective scheme by signing a new contract with their retailer.
If you have tenants moving into this property, they will be able to access the scheme.
You should discuss your options with your electricity retailer.
Yes. If there is a fault or any damage to the parts associated with your solar system, it is important that you organise for the equipment to be replaced by a licensed electrical contractor. This will ensure that the required paperwork to maintain your eligibility under the scheme is completed and will also ensure the safety of your system.
If you have an issue with your electricity meter, you should contact your electricity retailer as this equipment is part of the network infrastructure and should be replaced by the distribution business for your area.
It is important that you do not increase the generating capacity of your existing system otherwise you will forfeit your access to the scheme. This applies to the generating capacity of the panels rather than the inverter. While customers are allowed to install inverters that are larger than the inverter installed at the time of the scheme closure, it is the installation of extra panels that will render a customer ineligible for the PFIT scheme. It should be noted that an oversized inverter will not increase the generating capacity of your solar system, and in some instances may actually decrease its generating capacity.
Generally, this will be allowed, but there are some restrictions and you will need to discuss your circumstances with your electricity retailer. Your retailer will be able to advise you on the best approach according to your situation.
It is recommended you place your panels into storage for the duration of the work being completed at your property to prevent any damage to your solar or other renewable energy system and to ensure that net metering arrangements continue at your property. If your system is attached to the house and continues to operate whilst it is not your primary place of residence (for instance, you are not staying in the house during the work) you may forfeit your access to the PFIT scheme.
You also cannot move your system to a new property and reclaim the PFIT. This is because the feed-in tariffs are linked to the property rather than the system.
If you are replacing any equipment, you must ensure that the system's generating capacity after the building work is complete is not higher than when you registered for the Premium scheme. If your system's generating capacity increases, you will forfeit your access to the scheme.
Your feed-in tariff relies on your electricity meter. If this meter is damaged during the building work and a new meter is required you will still retain access to the scheme. Contact your electricity retailer to discuss your arrangements and to ensure you do not forfeit your access to the scheme.
Please ensure that the necessary reinstallation work is completed by a licensed electrical contractor. This will ensure that the required paperwork to maintain your eligibility under the scheme is completed and will also ensure the safety of your system.
Yes. This is assuming that you had originally qualified for the feed-in scheme before its closure date, your new house at the same property is still your primary place of residence, you maintain net metering arrangements, and you do not increase the capacity of your original solar panels.
If you are installing a new solar or other type of renewable energy system to access the minimum Feed-in Tariff, you need to ensure that your existing system and the new system are separately metered (i.e. the system receiving PFIT continues to be net metered). This includes if you are installing a new system on the same property. You should discuss your plans with your electricity retailer.
If you are accessing the PFIT you cannot move your existing system from your current property where you are receiving credits for the excess electricity you generate.
For the system you are receiving the rate for, you must ensure this continues to be your primary place of residence.
You cannot add generating capacity to your existing system if you are already accessing the PFIT scheme.
Solar customers that install small-scale batteries as part of their current PV system will continue to be eligible to receive feed-in tariffs for the electricity generated and exported by their system to their retailer. This also means that you can install a battery and still receive the Premium Feed-in Tariff as long as you maintain your eligibility requirements as outlined in your contract.
Page last updated: 03/04/20