First time home buyers or tenants who recently started renting a property, may find themselves having to use a prepaid electricity meter for the first time. It’s a straight forward system that makes managing your utilities easier and more efficient. Whether you’re a landlord or tenant, having a prepaid electricity meter installed has benefits for everyone.

What is a prepaid electricity meter? 

Most often, landlords or body corporates have prepaid meters installed in a property so that tenants or students can purchase their utilities on a pay-as-you-go basis. This ensures that the landlord, rental agency or body corporate is not liable for a hefty bill come month-end. When tenants pay upfront for electricity, it leads to improved cash flow and eliminates the default risk. Buying tokens for your prepaid electricity meter is beneficial to tenants because it assists them to be more mindful of their consumption.

How are landlords reimbursed?

After a certified electrician successfully installs the prepaid sub-meter, it needs to be activated on the Citiq Prepaid vending system. During the activation process, the landlord will need to provide their details, including their banking details. Each month Citiq Prepaid will collect the money that tenants have spent on utilities and pay this back to the landlord. When the landlord receives their main municipal bill, it will include the total consumption amount, which consists of the tenant’s portion. Paying the money back to the landlord ensures that they have sufficient funds to pay the entire municipal bill.

What does installing a prepaid electricity meter cost?

Depending on the type of property you have, a specific prepaid sub-meter will be needed. The cost of the sub-meter will vary according to where you have purchased it from. A certified electrician can purchase the meter for you, and they will include the purchase amount in their final installation bill.  Citiq Prepaid does not charge any activation fees to register the meter on our vending system. We only charge an 8.45% service fee on tokens purchased for the prepaid electricity meter. 

These articles provide more information::

Where can I purchase electricity tokens?

Prepaid electricity tokens can be bought in various ways to ensure tenants can recharge 24 hours a day at many convenient locations countrywide. We also have online partners, and tokens may be purchased through a variety of online systems, including banks and our portal. For more information about how to buy tokens for your Citiq Prepaid electricity meter, please visit our How to Buy Tokens page on our website.

Understanding how the recovery rate is calculated is often confusing for some. When using a prepaid electricity sub-meter, there are additional fees associated with buying tokens. The recovery rate is made up of the base tariff, building recovery fee (if applicable), Citiq Prepaid service fee, channel fee (if applicable) and VAT. 

Read the below articles to further understand how this works:

Ready to install your prepaid sub-meter?

The process of installing and activating your Citiq Prepaid meter should be painless and straightforward. However, if you need any help or more information about prepaid electricity meter installation costs, please call our call centre on 087 55 111 55, and one of our agents can assist you. They can also help you find a wholesaler or installer in your area. Alternatively, you can email us at

Please note: Citiq Prepaid meters are prepaid sub-meters and must always be installed downstream from Eskom/Council meters. We will provide information to authorities for criminal prosecution should anyone try to replace the main meter.