Natural gas can be used for central heating and to generate electricity for household appliances such as your cooker and hob, tumble dryer, real flame fires or outdoor lighting.
Gas supply is privatised, which means that you can choose which private company supplies your home with gas. Suppliers offer a range of services and deals, including different ways to pay your bill. Many energy suppliers provide both electricity and gas.
Gas Networks Ireland
(GNI) is responsible for operating and maintaining the gas network. You will need to contact GNI if you are connecting to the electricity grid for the first time, or if you are disconnecting completely. You might also give meter readings to GNI.
GNI connects all customers to its network regardless of which gas supply company you use. It also has a number of other roles including:
providing site works services to customers who wish to have their gas connection altered in some way
If you are building a home, or moving into a home that has never been connected to the gas network, you must contact GNI to be connected. As the gas network is not available in all parts of the country, you must first check if gas is available in your area. You can do this by using GNI’s Gas Network Map.
If gas is available, then you can:
contact GNI to apply and pay for connection works to be carried out
contact a gas supplier to sign up to a service and they can organise connection with GNI for you
GNI will install the external gas pipes and meter you need to set up the connection. The internal work on the house, including gas pipes and connection to appliances, must be completed by a Registered Gas Installer
(RGI). The RGI should give you a conformance certificate when the internal work has been completed.
If you want to disconnect from the gas supply because of building or renovation work, you must contact GNI for advice.
Electricity supply in Ireland is privatised. This means that you can choose which private company you want to supply your home with electricity. Suppliers offer a range of services and deals, including a variety of payment arrangements, to their customers. Many energy suppliers provide both electricity and gas.
ESB Networks (ESBN) is responsible for operating and maintaining the electricity network in Ireland. You will need to contact ESBN if you are connecting to the electricity grid for the first time, or if you are disconnecting completely. You might also give meter readings to ESBN.
But in most cases, your day-to-day electricity needs will be met by your electricity supplier. This document explains how to connect to an electricity service, how the system works and what to do if something goes wrong.
If you are moving into a property that has never been connected before, or one that has been disconnected for more than 2 years, you will first need to apply to an electricity supplier for a domestic supply agreement. The CRU keeps a list of licensed energy suppliers.
When you have picked a supplier, you should then contact ESBN and give the following information:
Your supplier will then contact ESBN to ask that your electricity connection is turned on. ESBN will also arrange for your meter to be installed. The builder's electrician will switch on the electricity supply in your home.
is responsible for the efficient supply of water to homes and businesses. Its main task is to operate and improve public water and wastewater systems in Ireland to provide safe, reliable and high quality services to customers.
The CRU is Irish Water’s economic regulator while the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is its environmental regulator.
As the economic regulator, the CRU works to make sure that Irish Water is run efficiently. It has a role in the following areas:
revenue setting – It assesses and approves the revenue that Irish Water can make over a certain period of time
reporting – Irish Water must report to the CRU on its performance
every 6 months
customer service – Ensuring that Irish Water is following the guidance in its customer handbook.
This handbook contains codes of practice, which the CRU approves and regularly reviews to make sure that Irish Water provides the best protection and service for customers
approval of policy and charges – It approves policy and charges for:
Connecting customers to the public water and wastewater network (the Irish Water Network). Find out more about water connections.
Excess water usage by Irish water customers (domestic and non-domestic) and regulates public water and wastewater charges. Find out more about water charges.
Under the Waste Management Act 1996,
all local authorities must arrange for the collection of the household waste in their area. They must also provide or arrange for the provision of facilities for the disposal and recovery of household waste. Household waste is usually collected once a week, generally by a private operator. Some operators collect different types of waste in different weeks.
You can reduce the amount of waste that you leave out for collection – see ‘Recycling and composting’ below.
New charging arrangements
In the past, some waste collectors charged for household waste collection according to weight and some charged a flat rate.
A new framework for household waste charges was announced in June 2017. Under the new arrangements, waste collectors can offer a range of pricing options, such as standing charges; charges per lift or per kilo; charges by weight band; weight allowance charges; or combinations of these elements.
However, all-in flat-rate charging for waste is being phased out as customers renew their service contracts or enter new ones.
An annual support of €75 will be introduced for people who have lifelong or long-term medical incontinence. This aims to help with the cost of disposing of incontinence products. The details of this scheme are currently being finalised.
Since 2013, a series of Regulations have been introduced to deal with the disposal of food waste and bio-waste. They include the European Union (Household Food Waste and Bio-waste) Regulations 2015.
As part of this phased introduction, brown bins have been introduced on a gradual basis, starting in the largest population centres and extending each year to smaller centres of population.
With effect from July 2017, they are being rolled out to the last grouping of population centres – those with more than 500 residents. Very small population areas and small islands, where it is not practical to collect food waste separately, will not be covered.
Under the Regulations, householders must do one of the following with their food waste:
segregate it and make it available for separate collection
compost it at home (while ensuring that it does not cause smells or nuisance)
bring it to an authorised facility for composting or other suitable treatment
You may not use a macerator to process your food waste, or put food waste in the general waste collection.
Many waste collectors use wheelie bins for the safe and efficient collection of waste. If there is a wheelie bin system in operation in your area, you must present your waste in a wheelie bin or it will not be collected. If you use bin bags, you will need to attach a pre-paid tag to each bag. If you do not tag your rubbish, it will not be collected. You can generally buy tags from local shops, garages etc. Your waste collection operator can provide a full list of sellers.
Separation of waste
Most waste collectors operate a system of waste separation. In general, different types of waste must be put in colour-coded containers. Examples of such colour codes are: brown bins for garden waste, food waste and other compostable waste; green bins for recyclable items; and black or grey bins for residual waste. Your waste collector will provide detailed information about what goes in each bin.
If you have a large volume of waste to get rid of, you can hire a skip from a private waste collection company. Bulky waste can also be brought to civic amenity centres or landfill sites. Some local authorities operate occasional bulk waste collections and will advertise this service if and when it occurs. Bulky items like carpets, furniture or fridges should never be left out for the regular refuse collection.
Recycling and composting
Much of household waste can be recycled. Local authorities must ensure that there are adequate facilities for recycling. Most waste collection operators collect recyclables in designated bins on alternate weeks.
Composting is another useful way of cutting down on household waste.
Much of the household waste produced in Ireland is sent to landfill.
Waste charges and methods of payment can vary considerably. Check with your household waste collection operator for details of their charges.
A new framework for household waste charges was announced in June 2017.
You can dispose of many different types of waste for free at recycling or civic amenity centres. However, some centres may charge a small entry fee. You may be charged for certain items such as mattresses or carpets, or for particularly large quantities.
If you use a landfill site, there are entry charges for cars and car trailers. Vans are charged at a commercial rate.
For more details of charges, check with the relevant centre or landfill site, or check on your local authority’s website.
Where to apply
Your local authority
can advise you on waste disposal and recycling facilities.
The website repak.ie
provides information on the waste accepted at each recycling or civic amenity centre.
In July 2015, a national postcode system known as Eircode was introduced.
All residential and business addresses have been given a unique new Eircode. Residential addresses include every address where post is delivered. Each house on a street, each flat in an apartment block, each unit in a duplex unit and each house in a rural townland has been given an Eircode.
In a halting site with numbered bays, each bay has been given an Eircode. The Eircode does not belong to the caravan but to the bay in which it resides. If a caravan or mobile home within a bay moves from the bay, the bay retains the Eircode. If a halting site has an office that receives mail, the office address will get an Eircode.
An Eircode is a unique 7-character code consisting of letters and numbers. Each Eircode consists of a 3-character routing key to identify the area and a 4-character unique identifier for each address, for example, A65 F4E2.
The routing key is the first 3 characters of an Eircode. The first character is always a letter, followed by 2 numbers (except for D6W). The letters are not linked to a county or city name, except for postal districts in Dublin, which have had their existing postal codes transferred into a routing key format such as D03, D12 and D22. The same routing key can be shared by several towns and townlands.
The unique identifier is a group of 4-characters and comes after the routing key. Each unique identifier is different and unique to your home or premises. They are not in sequence. This is to avoid the situation where a new building is created between two existing ones, and the code sequence would be broken, requiring all Eircodes in the area to be changed.
Many companies in Ireland offer telephone services for both fixed line and mobile. Each of the telephone service providers offers different packages to consumers. Before entering into a telephone contract, think carefully about your needs and compare prices and plans.
ComReg's price comparison tool
allows you to compare mobile phone charges across all operators. It helps you to select the optimum mobile phone package, based on your individual usage.
Fixed line contract
Fixed line is commonly known as your landline or home telephone. A fixed line means that your telephone (or the stand for a cordless telephone) is not wire free but is physically connected to a point on a wall in your home. Many providers now offer fixed line services as part of a package (also known as a ‘bundle’) along with home internet, and sometimes TV.
Mobile network providers
Mobile network providers offer a range of plans (with or without a new phone) that includes a certain amount of calls to other mobiles or landlines, text messages and data (this allows you to use internet while not connected to WIFI).
Mobile phone contracts
There are 2 main plans that mobile phone providers offer:
Prepay: This is a pay-as-you-go option where you buy credit from various outlets such as shops, bank machines and online and top up your phone when you need to. Some providers offer prepay options that include calls, texts and data. You don’t need to sign to a contract and are free to switch networks at any time.
Bill pay: This means that you receive a monthly bill for the services you have used in the previous month and will pay a set price. The duration of the contract will usually be either month-to-month or 12 to 24 months. If you go above your allowance of calls, texts and data you will have to pay extra. When you enter into a bill pay contract, your contract is with the mobile network provider.
Bill pay plans usually give you the option to either buy a phone outright or buy it (either free or at a significantly lower price) as part of a bundle. There is also the option of a SIM-only plan where you don’t need a new phone and simply sign up to a monthly bill pay contract for calls, texts and data.
Your plan generally includes:
a certain amount of free national calls
a certain amount of calls to particular networks
an allowance for SMS (text message)
an allowance for data usage (usually measured in gigabytes or GB)
ComReg is also required to assure consumer protection when using national or international premium rate services and to also set in place procedures to deal with consumer complaints that arise from using these services.
What premium rate phone services are
Premium rate phone services are services you can pay for using your phone credit or phone bill. Premium rate means the numbers cost more to call or text than other numbers. Examples of premium rate phone services include:
quizzes and competitions
advice and entertainment services
ringtones and wallpapers
Premium rate phone services are sometimes called Information Services and have a unique 15 prefix, for example, 1530 or 1515.
There are also Premium Rate SMS Services (known as PSMS) and these are recognised by a 5 digit Short Code beginning with the number 5.
You can access premium rate services through fixed-line phones, mobile phones, the Internet, auto-diallers on personal computers, interactive digital TV or fax. The services are advertised in print media and on TV, radio and the Internet.
Calls to premium rate services cost more than ordinary phone calls and each prefix has a specific call cost. Call charges from mobile phones are generally higher and the cost varies according to your mobile network operator. Premium rate call charges will be on your phone bill and are generally listed separately. The overall charge to the consumer is shared between the network operator, the service provider or anyone else who contributes to the provision of the service.
If you would like to have all premium rate services barred from your phone, you should contact your telephone service provider. Some phone service providers provide this service free of charge.
Unsubscribing from a text service
If you want to unsubscribe from a Premium Rate SMS Service you should:
reply by text on your mobile to the last message you received
send the word STOP
If you do not have a 5 digit number to send it to, ask your mobile phone network operator for the number attached to the last message you received. You should be unsubscribed within 48 hours of texting the word STOP.
by phone, on Lo-call 1890 228528 (for credit or debit card transactions only)
by direct debit, using forms available from your TV Licence Records Office
– payments are by monthly, quarterly, half-yearly or yearly instalments
The annual fee for a TV licence is €160 for both homes and businesses.
When you buy your first-time licence, it is valid until the end of the 11th month following the month it was issued. For example, if the licence was issued in the middle of April it is valid until the end of March the following year. When you renew it at the end of that period, the new licence is valid for 12 months.
There are various different options to help you stay connected and access the internet from your home. The internet connection you can avail of will often depend on where you live, the infrastructure that is in place and the service providers that operate in your area.
Before entering into an internet contract, you should do your research about the broadband speed and connection required and the service being offered by the internet service provider (ISP).
The Commission for Communications Regulation
(ComReg) provides information on internet services and allows you to compare charges for internet services and combined packages across all operators. The site can help you to select the best package, based on your internet needs.