The Best Local Electricity Rates: Where Does Your State Rank?
Your electric bill depends on where you live. It also depends on your electricity provider. Some providers may offer fixed rates and others vary. There has also been no shortage of stories in the news lately about power outages caused by deregulated platforms initially designed to help consumers save money that eventually became overwhelmed by crushing cold or heat. However much you pay on your monthly bill, theres no doubt you've heard about the potential for low rates and greater plan flexibility.
This page is not about energy providers, but is designed to help you better understand the average costs of electricity by state so you can evaluate your provider.
Data for all 50 states was pulled from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). This information can help you decide if your electricity bill is competitive or if you should change your energy plan.
What state you live in affects your electricity rates
Electricity plans can be affected by season, demand, and, often, a credit check. But often where you live is the most important factor when evaluating electric rates.
March 2021 data show that the average U.S. price is 13.29 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh). That's according to the latest data available from the EIA. This is slightly down compared to the previous month.
The lowest average residential electricity rates of any state in the country—8.88 cents per kWh—was found in Oklahoma. The next lowest rate is in Washington. If you live in Hawaii you paid the highest rate for power. The best electricity rates are not always found in places where energy is deregulated.
Electricity Rates by State
Average cost of electricity around the continental U.S. via the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)
|State||March 2021||March 2020||Change (%)|
|Alabama||13.35 ¢/kWh||12.76 ¢/kWh||4.6%|
|Alaska||21.9 ¢/kWh||22.33 ¢/kWh||-1.9%|
|Arizona||12.18 ¢/kWh||12.16 ¢/kWh||0.1%|
|Arkansas||10.27 ¢/kWh||10.13 ¢/kWh||1.3%|
|California||22.71 ¢/kWh||20.49 ¢/kWh||10.8%|
|Colorado||12.34 ¢/kWh||12.04 ¢/kWh||2.4%|
|Connecticut||22.74 ¢/kWh||23.3 ¢/kWh||-2.4%|
|Delaware||12.11 ¢/kWh||12.95 ¢/kWh||-6.4%|
|Florida||11.65 ¢/kWh||11.63 ¢/kWh||0.17%|
|Georgia||11.83 ¢/kWh||11.38 ¢/kWh||3.9%|
|Hawaii||32.97 ¢/kWh||33.1 ¢/kWh||-0.39%|
|Idaho||9.99 ¢/kWh||9.64 ¢/kWh||3.6%|
|Illinois||13.87 ¢/kWh||13.19 ¢/kWh||5.1%|
|Indiana||13.15 ¢/kWh||12.19 ¢/kWh||7.8%|
|Iowa||11.29 ¢/kWh||12.4 ¢/kWh||-8.9%|
|Kansas||12.85 ¢/kWh||12.67 ¢/kWh||1.4%|
|Kentucky||11.02 ¢/kWh||10.76 ¢/kWh||2.4%|
|Louisiana||10.16 ¢/kWh||9.07 ¢/kWh||12.02%|
|Maine||16.42 ¢/kWh||16.56 ¢/kWh||-0.8%|
|Maryland||12.84 ¢/kWh||13.59 ¢/kWh||-5.5%|
|Massachusetts||23.29 ¢/kWh||22.78 ¢/kWh||2.2%|
|Michigan||17.17 ¢/kWh||16.05 ¢/kWh||6.9%|
|Minnesota||12.89 ¢/kWh||12.85 ¢/kWh||0.3%|
|Mississippi||11.52 ¢/kWh||11.54 ¢/kWh||-0.17%|
|Missouri||10.37 ¢/kWh||9.99 ¢/kWh||3.8%|
|Montana||10.93 ¢/kWh||11.32 ¢/kWh||-3.4%|
|Nebraska||10.13 ¢/kWh||10.55 ¢/kWh||-3.9%|
|Nevada||11.96 ¢/kWh||12.12 ¢/kWh||-1.3%|
|New Hampshire||19.23 ¢/kWh||18.97 ¢/kWh||1.3%|
|New Jersey||15.58 ¢/kWh||16.14 ¢/kWh||-3.4%|
|New Mexico||12.74 ¢/kWh||12.47 ¢/kWh||2.1%|
|New York||18.03 ¢/kWh||17.17 ¢/kWh||5.01%|
|North Carolina||11.45 ¢/kWh||11.67 ¢/kWh||-1.8%|
|North Dakota||10.17 ¢/kWh||10.0 ¢/kWh||1.7%|
|Ohio||12.41 ¢/kWh||11.91 ¢/kWh||4.2%|
|Oklahoma||8.88 ¢/kWh||9.84 ¢/kWh||-9.7%|
|Oregon||11.1 ¢/kWh||10.95 ¢/kWh||1.3%|
|Pennsylvania||13.25 ¢/kWh||13.75 ¢/kWh||-3.6%|
|Rhode Island||23.35¢/kWh||23.25 ¢/kWh||0.43%|
|South Carolina||13.28 ¢/kWh||12.78 ¢/kWh||3.9%|
|South Dakota||11.3 ¢/kWh||11.17 ¢/kWh||1.1%|
|Tennessee||10.71 ¢/kWh||10.81 ¢/kWh||-0.9%|
|Texas||11.49 ¢/kWh||12.08 ¢/kWh||-4.8%|
|Utah||10.06 ¢/kWh||10.16 ¢/kWh||-0.9%|
|Vermont||18.74 ¢/kWh||19.6 ¢/kWh||-4.3%|
|Virginia||11.71 ¢/kWh||12.26 ¢/kWh||-4.4%|
|Washington||9.96 ¢/kWh||9.60 ¢/kWh||-3.7%|
|West Virginia||12.49 ¢/kWh||12.05 ¢/kWh||3.6%|
|Wisconsin||14.35 ¢/kWh||14.73 ¢/kWh||-2.5%|
|Wyoming||10.79 ¢/kWh||10.71 ¢/kWh||0.7%|
|U.S.||13.29 ¢/kWh||13.08 ¢/kWh||1.6%|
10 states with the least expensive residential electricity rates
|State||March 2021 rates (in cents/kWh)|
10 states with the most expensive residential electricity rates
|State||March 2021 rates (in cents/kWh)|
Averages across the country
The average home in the U.S. consumes 887 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity per month. Electricity costs vary by the form of energy generation used to create the power and also by the electric companies you're dealing with.
For example, a company like Green Mountain Energy Company, based in Houston, offers electricity products, carbon offsets, and greener solutions. Cirro and Pulse Power are other fixed rate companies in Texas. If you're in North Carolina, your options are more limited. Duke Energy is the largest provider in the Carolinas.
Commercial electricity rates are also impacted by deregulation
Energy suppliers offer unique pricing plans for businesses. The average business consumes 6,066 kWh of electricity per month and received a bill of about $647 in 2019.
Business electricity rates by state (cents/kWh)
|State||March 2021||March 2020||% change|
Understand the energy market
Term lengths, rebates, prepaid options, and rate types vary across the country. California experienced the biggest variation in energy rate prices, while Alabama was steadiest.
Changes in electricity prices may seem random, but there are a few primary factors that determine how much you pay. These factors are:
- Time-of-use: Some energy suppliers offer plans with time-of-use discounts, such as free energy supply from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m.
- Time of year: In warmer states, summer rates can be higher than winter rates due to higher energy demand for cooling.
- Location: Energy supply rates change from state to state and even among utility areas in the same state, regardless of whether the state has energy choice.
What tomorrow holds
Energy comes from many sources, including coal, natural gas, nuclear and renewables, like solar energy. More and more residential energy customers are turning to renewable energy sources each year. Solar is often supplemented by wind and hydropower.
- Wind: Texas continues to expand in renewables, including wind, and it's showing up in the job numbers. Today, Iowa, Oklahoma, and South Dakota produce the most wind power.
- Solar: California's solar energy rebates, regulations, and mandates make it one of the fastest growing solar states.
- Hydroelectric: New York has the largest hydroelectricity generation capacity in the eastern US, followed by Alabama.