Are you trying to decide among the different energy rate plans in Ontario? You have a couple of options to choose from, and each has its own unique benefits. Whether or not those benefits will best suit your energy needs, however, is up to you, your lifestyle, and your consumption patterns. Let’s take a closer look to learn more about each of your options.
Retail energy rate plans in Ontario
Retail energy providers began emerging in 2002, after Ontario’s energy market deregulated. The shift allowed for a competitive-based market rather than a purely regulated market, and that provided consumers with the option to choose among a number of energy rate and plan options. That is, ultimately, the goal of the retail energy provider.
Instead of offering one uniform rate, retail providers offer varying types of plans with different rate options that are designed to cater to the different needs of different types of consumers, whether you need low rates for a big business’ high consumption, or more flexible rates for a home’s diverse and season-based energy consumption. The big difference is that retail providers are competition-based, which means the various retail providers offering energy rate plans in Ontario will all be competing with each other to produce the lowest rates and the best plan options. In Ontario, these providers include:
Pro Tip: Many providers offer plans that specialize to meet the needs of specific demographics (i.e.: farms, large-scale corporations, start-ups, residential, etc.). Make sure you compare the different rate plans among providers to see which offers the best options for you.
Regulated rate energy plans in Ontario
While retail energy rate plans provide consumers with access to a competitive market, regulated rate plans are still available for those who prefer to have access to energy rate plans in Ontario that offer stable pricing without the risk of market spikes. Regulated price plan (RPP) rates are set by the Ontario Energy Board. Unlike some other provinces, Ontario has two types of RPPs:
- Time-of-Use: Did you know that energy rates don’t stay consistent throughout the day? Since pricing is based on a demand and surplus model, those rates fluctuate throughout the day as demand for energy either increases or decreases. During times when more people are at home consuming energy (at the end of the work day), demand is higher, and thus rates are higher. Most regulated rate providers offer a set rate that accommodates the expected price variation, but time-of-use rate plans structure a sliding rate scale around peak and off-peak hours, which means you get billed based on how much energy you use and when you use it.
- Tiered Pricing: Tiered pricing plans provide you with a lower rate for a certain amount of energy each month. When you consume more than that set amount, your rates increase. The energy tier you place yourself in will determine both the discounted rate, the amount of energy you can consume at that rate, and the difference in price when you exceed your limit.
Regulated energy rate plans in Ontario are offered by:
Pro Tip: The best way to determine which type of plan is best for you is to look at your consumption patterns and habits. If you consume predictable amounts of energy each month, tiered pricing might work best for you. Alternatively, if you can moderate your energy consumption during peak hours, you may be able to save the most on energy by opting for time-of-use.