Jersey Central Power & Light, a First Energy Corporation company, implemented a rate change to their basic generation service (BGS) charge on October 1, 2016 that will stay in effect until the end of May next year. The BGS price is the price for electricity supply charged to all JCPL residential customers who have not switched to a competitive supplier. The rate change will effect smaller homes and apartments the most.
Throughout the summer JCPL residential customers were charged $0.094604 per KWh for the first 600 KWh that they consumed, and then $0.103862 for all KWh above 600. Starting on October 1, 2016 customers on the BGS plan will pay one flat rate of $0.102863 for all electricity consumption. This means that it will be the smaller home customers who see the biggest increase on their electric bills. For customers who use below 600 KWh a month, their JCPL electric bills will rise by 13% if they decide to stay on the BGS service rate plan.
Many competitive rate offers exist that are in the $0.09 and even $0.08 range. The discrepancy between competitive offers and the default BGS rate is providing a incentive for customers to switch to a competitive JCPL electricity supplier. Choosing to purchase power from a competitive supplier results in the new supplier’s rate to replace the JCPL BGS charge, which produces real savings on the electric bill. The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities estimates that 199,269 of JCPL’s 984,646 residential customers have switched to a competitive electricity supplier. The switch numbers have slowly but steadily risen over the last year are expected to continue to rise as more people become aware of electricity choice in the JCPL service area.
On October 1, 2016 the New Jersey Public Service Electric & Gas Company (PSEG) enacted a scheduled change to their basic generation service rate charged to residential customers. The rate change will effect roughly 1.7 million residential electricity customers in the state of New Jersey who are not purchasing their power from an alternative supplier. Basic generation service represents the costs for the power supply portion of the bill, which is also the section of the bill that PSEG customers have the option to shop around and search for a better price.
As of August 2016, the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities reported that 185,973 PSEG residential customers, 10.4% of the residential customer base, had elected to purchase their power from an alternative supplier. For these customers, the rate change that took place on October 1 will not effect their monthly electric bill. Instead these customers will pay whatever rate they purchased from the specific alternative PSEG supplier for whom they entered into a contract with.
The remaining 89.6% of PSEG residential customers who are paying the high basic generation service rate of $0.125982 for their power supply have an opportunity to lower their electricity costs by finding a more competitive offer from an alternative supplier. The new PSEG rates will stay in effect until May 31, 2017. On June 1, 2017 the rates will increase even more to $0.137684 for some consumers. With no rate relief in sight from PSEG, the time to shop for competitive PSEG residential rates is as beneficial for consumers as it ever has been. Competitive rate offers below show the amount of savings versus the current PSEG basic generation service default price.
Customers of Delmarva Power in Delaware have the ability to save a substantial amount of money on their monthly electric bills by searching for a competitive supplier. Delaware electricity choice provides consumers with the option to either pay the default standard offer service price for power supply through Delmarva or replace that price with a competitive offer. Currently, competitive suppliers are offering electricity rates that are well below the standard offer service price, resulting in an opportunity for Delaware residential customers to reduce their electricity bill in the coming months.
While Delaware has been open to electricity choice for several years, until recently it had been difficult for residents in the state to purchase their power from a competitive supplier. Few electricity suppliers were willing to go through the lengthy process of offering electricity rates in a relatively small and unproven market. Meanwhile, the neighboring state of Maryland has seen a consistent increase in both electricity supplier offers and number of customers shopping for competitive rates over the last several years. The success in Maryland has enticed some major electricity suppliers to take the leap and enter the Delaware market in recent months.
In order to entice customers to shop for the first time some suppliers are offering rates that are as much as 19% lower than the Delmarva DE standard offer service. The majority of Delmarva customers are unaware of their ability to shop for competitive power, which leaves the job of educating the market up to the suppliers. The electricity bill savings available to Delaware residential customers should help speed up the process. According to the Delaware Public Service Commission, as of the end of April 2016 only 28,198 of the 277,109 residential customers in the service area were purchasing power from a competitive supplier. While the residential switching percentage is just above 10%, the number of business customers who has switched is above 30%. Both markets are expected to see more shopping activity in the coming months and years as more competitive suppliers enter the market and provide more options for customers.
Below are current competitive prices offered in the Delmarva Delaware service area.
Alternative electricity suppliers in Pennsylvania are offering attractive offers to residential customers of Pennsylvania Power & Light (PPL) that are lower than the utility’s price to compare charges. Despite a recent price reduction in the default rate by PPL, the energy choice market is producing rate offers that can provide savings by as much as 15% to the generation supply section of the bill.
On June 1, 2016 PPL was able to drop the default price to compare rate to $0.07491 from $0.07918, which was a modest 5.4% decrease. However competitive rates offered by alternative PPL suppliers have dropped as well providing even larger savings opportunities. The PPL price to compare rates are the result of auctions that are held months prior to the rate actually taking effect. In contrast, competitive rates offered by alternative suppliers are based on current energy market conditions. If wholesale energy rate offers drop after the auction for the Price to Compare rate is complete, alternative suppliers have an easy time undercutting the default price, which gives PPL residential customers a huge incentive to shop for lower electricity prices.
When the price adjustment went into effect on June first, just under 46% of the residential customer pool were purchasing their power from an alternative PPL supplier. The shopping activity in the PPL service area has been above average compared to other competitive electricity markets in the United States and one of the highest in the state of Pennsylvania. However, even with almost half of the customers already active participants in energy choice and a recent drop in the default price, shopping activity could pickup in August as new alternative offers continue to be presented that offer strong electric bill savings.
Here is a list of current alternative PPL electricity rate offers and their comparison to the recent PPL Price to Compare rate.