Learn About Deregulated Electricity & Energy

If you live in a deregulated state and need help choosing an electricity provider, EcoWatch is your source for all things energy.

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What You Need To Know About Energy Rates

The current U.S. average electricity cost is 14.29 cents per kilowatt-hour, but rates can vary greatly depending on where you live.1 Hawaii residents see the highest prices, with an average rate of 37.44 cents/kWh. Nebraska residents pay the least at 9.43 cents/kWh.

There are currently 29 states with deregulated energy markets. Of these, 15 states have deregulated electricity and natural gas, 12 only have natural gas and two only have electric. Also, some states are only partially deregulated. For example, in Texas, Houston and Dallas residents can choose their energy suppliers, but Austin and San Antonio residents are not. The map to the right shows the states with deregulated electricity sectors.

In states with deregulated electricity, customers are often able to choose between a few types of power plans. These typically include:

  • Fixed-rate plans: With this type of plan, you sign a contract with an energy provider and your rates are locked in for the duration of your contract.
  • Variable-rate plans: These plans don’t have length-based contracts, but rates change based on fluctuations in the energy market. The price per kWh will increase or decrease depending on supply and demand.
  • Prepaid plans: With this type of plan, you pay in advance for a certain amount of electricity. Then, you can track your energy usage and reload your account when it runs low. If you aren’t enrolled in an auto-pay plan and you don’t reload your account, your power will be shut off.
  • Green energy plans: These plans supply electricity from renewable energy sources, like wind, hydro or solar energy. They cost about 1 cent per kWh more than non-renewable plans, but we recommend them if feasible.

Use the resources on this page to learn more about finding the best energy rates in your area.

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