Consumers on Government Regulated Rate (RRO) are Overpaying for Electricity

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  • Consumers on Government Regulated Rate (RRO) are Overpaying for Electricity

Are you overpaying for your electricity? If you are one of the 800,000 consumers currently enrolled on the government’s Regulated Rate Option (RRO) then the answer, unfortunately, is yes.

Alberta’s deregulated electricity market has benefits that many consumers don’t yet realize. Because of our market’s unique set-up, there are numerous independent retailers in Alberta all offering competitive rates. You just have to shop around to find them! It only takes a few clicks to start saving.

This news isn’t new. In fact, over the last six months, NewGen’s variable electricity rate has been consistently lower than the RRO. The differences are significant, in that time, RRO customers paid more than 26% compared to the NewGen variable rate!

In the last six months, the power pool price charged by generators has been stable, and the variable market rate has

outperformed the utilities’ regulated prices. With the current heat wave in the province, the generators bumped up the cost of energy – causing our variable rate to increase slightly – but NewGen is still cheaper and your “best buy.” And if the variable rate spikes, then switch over to our guaranteed rates.

If you aren’t familiar with some of the terminology mentioned above, here is a quick review:

Regulated Rate Option (RRO): Customers who have not shopped around for a competitive electricity provider are most likely signed up for services with the default provider (the RRO provider, also known as the “supplier of last resort”). For more information visit the Utility Consumer Advocate website.

Variable Electricity Rate: Also known as a “floating rate,” the variable market price is offered by competitive electricity providers in Alberta. This rate fluctuates with the market, and retailers typically charge market price plus a transaction fee per kWh.

Time to Take Advantage of Low Prices

Now that you know what is happening in the market, you might have a few questions like:

1. Great. Now, what do I do with this information?

Switching is simple: all you have to do is fill out an online form, choose the variable market price, and you are off to the races.

2. You said ‘fluctuates with the market,’ so what happens if market prices start to go up?

A great question. Should market conditions change and the variable rate is no longer the best rate plan for you, switch to any one of the fixed (guaranteed) electricity rates that are currently being offered. Switch or cancel your rate at any time online, penalty free. At NewGen Energy, you are never locked into a contract.

3. We are just talking about the cost of energy here. What about all those other charges on my bill?

This is a common concern for Albertans and something that only the government can address. On your electricity bill, you will see two categories of charges: regulated and deregulated charges. Deregulated charges include the cost of energy per kWh and administration fees (charged by your retailer). Regulated charges such as distribution and transmission, rate riders, balancing pool allocation, and municipal access fees will stay the same no matter who you choose as your provider.

4. Are there other benefits to switching besides price?

Yes. Unfortunately, some of the big utilities have shipped customer care and information technology jobs out of the country. Switching to a local company like NewGen means keeping more jobs in Alberta and keeps your money closer, so your community can go further!

Are you looking to save even more on that deregulated portion of your bill? Bundle Internet services with your electricity and get six months of electricity administration fees, free!

Congratulations! You are now armed with enough information to make an informed decision on whether or not staying on the RRO is right for you. For some people, it is the right decision.

Switching off of the government’s managed rate is simple. It doesn’t cost you anything to switch and you will

be happy with the savings, especially if you bundle Q Wave Internet with your utilities.

If you have questions that we have not answered above, you need more help understanding your choices, or just want to chat about the electricity market, our friendly, local Customer Care team is available to help you. Give us a call Monday – Friday from 9 am to 5 pm at 403-450-8591 or email us at [email protected].