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Electricity bill: actual and estimated reading, what are the differences?

It is important to communicate meter readings to only pay for what is consumed and, thus, avoid future adjustments, warns Deco.

The last few months have been marked by the rise in inflation, which rose – to 2.3% in January year-on-year, more than December (1.4%) –, in part, due to the increase in electricity prices. This increase has a direct impact on consumers’ purchasing power. The electricity bill represents, moreover, a large portion of Portuguese people's housing expenses, alongside the house payment/rent. But there is a way to try to reduce the cost of your electricity bill. How?

Simply, pay for what you actually consume. In this week's Deco Alerta article we explain everything about the actual and estimated reading of the electricity meter.

The weekly section Deco Alerta is provided by Deco – Portuguese Association for Consumer Protection* for idealista/news and is aimed at all consumers in Portugal.

I don't usually report my electricity meter reading and, perhaps, that's why I've had unpleasant surprises at the end of the year. I recently heard people talking about actual and estimated readings. Can you explain to me the difference between these two concepts and what impact it can have on the energy bill?

We start by informing you that it is very important that you communicate your meter readings so that you only pay for what you actually consume and, thus, avoid future adjustments, that is, unpleasant surprises.

Regarding the question, we clarify the following:

  • The actual meter reading is the reading obtained directly by the distribution network operator or communicated to it by the consumer. Corresponds to actual energy consumption in a given billing period;

  • The estimated reading corresponds to a calculation or estimate of consumption based on criteria of the daily average (by default) or fixed consumption (agreed with the supplier).

Therefore, although reading electricity measuring equipment is the responsibility of distribution network operators, if you regularly communicate readings you will avoid the following:

  • Estimated billing;

  • The need to make future adjustments.

By reading the meter, you will also be able to monitor the evolution and better adaptation of consumption behaviors and even detect any anomaly in equipment or the meter.

You can communicate the actual reading through the following means:

  • Digital Counter, available on the E-REDES website;

  • E-REDES application (available for Android and IOS);

  • Free reading line (800 507 507, 24 hours a day);

  • Through your electricity supplier.

The supplier indicates on the invoice the most appropriate period to make this communication. You must communicate the reading, preferably, on the last day of the indicated period.

The law requires the distribution network operator to read the meter every 2 months.

We draw attention to the fact that the consumer must always allow the operator access to the meter. If the consumer is unable to access the meter or obtain the actual reading and after warnings are sent to the consumer, the supply may be interrupted.

Read full article here

Source: Idealista


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