Utilities: Electricity, Gas, Water & Waste Disposal

When renting or purchasing a home in New Zealand, expats are responsible in getting connected to the Electricity, Water and Gas services themselves. There are many services which are available but it is important to find out the best rates.


Electricity in New Zealand works on a 240 Volt system and the supply is usually of good quality with hardly any power cuts. Although in rural areas home owners may need to have a generator.

There is a different choice of electricity companies in each region and prices will vary on who you choose. Majority of the home owners do have more than one contract with the first being with a retail company who sells the electricity and the second being with the company that provides the lines for electricity to be delivered in the home both providing good services. Some of the companies deal with the line provider and will only send one bill with others sending two.

To get connected to electricity, you will be required to contact the electricity supplier for it to be switched on in your home where you also may be required to provide proof of ID and proof of being the owner/tenant of the property. Once electricity has been connected, meters will be read every two months and most customers will send an electronic bill, paying this online, direct debit, over the counter or by sending a cheque.

Some expats choose the power shop option where they are able to pay as you go for electricity and other electrical suppliers offer an advanced meter which is read remotely without having someone to visit the home.


Gas is mainly used for central heating and cooking in the country and most electricity companies will supply gas. However, in rural areas home owners will need to purchase gas bottles. It is highly recommended to speak to a gas supply company to see what options are available i.e. piped gases or bottled gas.

For those who have piped gas in their home will be required to pay a line charge before paying the cost of the gas, but with bottled gas a rental charge will need to be paid as well as the cost of refilling the bottle which must be done by a qualified fitter.

To get gas supply in your home it is quite straight forward and you must call the company to get it connected. Proof of ID and address will need to be shown along with the tenancy agreement.  Meters will be read regularly and bills will be sent either monthly or every two months which can be paid for via direct debit, In banks or online.


The water supply in the country is usually provided by the local council but some residents living in rural areas will also have tanks on their property

Majority of the homes have water meters and it is recommended that residents only pay for the water that they use rather than the set charge due to this being expensive. To get a meter installed in your home, there will be an extra charge for this depending on the location.

The cost of water depends on the region you live in and bills are sent monthly giving the option to customers to pay via direct debit, cheque and online. Expats may need to show proof of ID to the local authorities with a tenancy agreement.

Waste Disposal

Expats in New Zealand will find that in certain areas there are a range of services for waste disposal and recycling.  The council will provide bins for rubbish for some houses which are collected on a regular basis, but for those houses that are not provided bins will need to purchase rubbish bags from the council or supermarkets. Residents are told before hand when their rubbish will be collected.

In some regions there may a limited number of waste bags that can be collected so what is not collected will need to be taken to recycling bins.  In rural areas there may not be a waste collection but there are collection points located around the area for residents to take throw their waste.

Most rural areas are unlikely to have a regular refuse collection, but there are normally collection points for residents to take their waste to. The availability and frequency of collections will depend upon the council in the area.