HelpPay welcomes payment options for Victorian water customers
Australians are already using social fintech to pay water bills for friends and family as new ESC rules come into effect; HelpPay calls on ESC to go further.
February 28, 2023 - HelpPay, a new Australian social impact fintech, welcomes new rules from the Essential Services Commission requiring water companies in Victoria to allow people experiencing financial difficulties to nominate someone else to pay their water bills.
The new rule means Victoria now offers some of the most progressive payment support processes in the world as inflation puts pressure on household budgets everywhere. It also means that industry must put the right processes in place to maintain an efficient delivery of service, while protecting customers and helpers.
From tomorrow, March 1st 2023, water businesses in Victoria must provide “redirection of a bill to another person for payment if the person agrees”. While giving customers more flexibility this will put an added administrative burden on water companies, particularly when it comes to explicitly informed consent and privacy considerations for the customer and the people nominated to help them.
HelpPay’s technology turns every bill into a shareable link and payment page and uniquely, guarantees financial help given towards a bill goes to the right account at the right provider - so people helping pay a bill know their help goes where it should, every time. HelpPay, a 100 per cent Australian owned company’s world-first technology, takes the stigma out of asking for help and avoids the financial and mental health costs associated with debt collection.
Customers of all four major Victorian water providers have already uploaded their bills into HelpPay to be paid by friends and family since the company launched in March last year. The company is already being promoted as a payment solution to energy companies that speak for 2.2 million customers nationwide.
Water companies and other industries can adopt HelpPay to stay ahead of new and emerging regulations. Adopters can also make the service free for the helper.
● HelpPay has been active in the market for less than a year but has already seen $1.9 million in bills uploaded to the platform.
● Water bills are the fourth most common bill to be uploaded to the HelpPay platform in 2023, behind energy, mobile phones and council rates.
● According to market research conducted on behalf of HelpPay, 90 per cent of Australians either agreed or strongly agreed that asking for financial help is not easy. The most common reason offered was "Having discussions about money is hard," with respondents reporting feeling stress and shame in overwhelming numbers.
● Water users that upload their bills to the platform incur no fee.
Quotes from HelpPay Co-Founder and Chief Customer Officer Rowan Wilde
“HelpPay is pleased to see the Essential Services Commission's move to make it easier to help pay someone’s water bill. It puts the needs of customers struggling with cost of living and inflation first and we think other jurisdictions and industries should take note of today’s move. We would also like to stress that our users tend to get better results when they can receive help from multiple sources. Many hands make light work, and often many family and friends have money to give some but not all of someone else’s bill. We urge the Essential Services Commission to consider taking things a step further to allow this, as it would empower a person’s broader social circle to help them get out of financial difficulty.”
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HelpPay, a 100% Australian-owned company, is a new social fintech and business platform with patent-pending technology in the payments industry that takes the stigma out of asking for help and the effort of providing help. HelpPay turns every bill into a shareable link and payment page, and, uniquely, guarantees financial help given towards a bill only goes to the provider.
HelpPay has undertaken market research to address the pain points for customers and providers when handling debt. HelpPay takes all the pain points and customers' experiences in the cycle of asking, giving and getting financial help today. HelpPay is also significantly cheaper for providers when managing their accounts receivable and less stressful for customers than traditional methods such as phone calls, sending letters and using debt collection agencies.