National Grid recently enacted a steep price increase on their basic service rates for residential electricity service in the state of Massachusetts. The rate increase became effective on November 1, 2016 and will last until at least April 30, 2017. Currently it is unknown what National Grid will charge their Massachusetts residential electricity customers after April of next year.
Basic service rates are the expenses for electricity supply that are charged to Massachusetts customers who do not choose a competitive energy supplier. They service as a default rate for those customers who have been slow to adapt to the changing energy choice market that exists in Massachusetts. Massachusetts electricity consumers have the ability to shop and buy power from a number of qualified suppliers the same way they can shop for a mobile phone plan. Having options has allowed consumers to find electricity plans that better suit their individual demands. Competitive energy suppliers are able to build plans and their company around specific National Grid customer pools. While one company might market themselves as a price stability option offering long term fixed rate plans, another might push rewards programs that focus on customers looking to gain incentives for buying their power each month from one specific brand similar to frequent flyer mile programs that exist in the airline industry.
The competitive energy market provides an abundance of choices to National Grid residential customers in Massachusetts. With the recent basic service rate increase now in effect it is more important than ever for first time energy shoppers to find a low rate competitive plan. From May 1 until September 30, 2016 the basic service rate had been $0.08042 for residential customers. That rate went up slightly in October to $0.08084. On November 1, 2016 the rate jumped to $0.09787, which represents a 21% increase in the price. The average basic service rate during 2016 has been $0.1054 for residential customers in Massachusetts who receive their electric bill from National Grid.