Since 1998, Massachusetts has proudly offered many of their customers with the unique power to choose their own electricity provider. This state-appointed electricity deregulation effort allows residents to pick their ideal competitive electricity rate from independent providers, instead of simply receiving a fixed rate from their local utility supplier.
Massachusetts? innovative system allows customers to shop for electricity rates for both their residential and business properties, giving them a choice in how they receive their energy. This means the more than 150 electric companies within the state now offer competitive energy plans and different offers and incentives, in an effort to earn the business of area residents.
Statewide, individual electric cooperatives have embraced deregulation and now offer a variety of energy plans, designed to fit the needs of all types of customers. From short-term to long-term plans, to plans with special add-ons and even ones that use completely renewable energy sources, these provides offer something for every type of area electricity consumer.
Do You Have the Power to Choose?
While there are some residents of Massachusetts that lie outside the deregulation borders, this incentive allows more than 2.5 million residents within the state to pick their electric providers.
If you lie within one of these four service areas, then you do. The deregulated area of the state is split up into the following service regions:
National Grid (Massachusetts Electric) – Serves over 1 million members in 168 communities throughout the state including Brockton, Worchester, Franklin Marlborough, Southbridge, Newbury Port, North Adams and many surrounding counties.
National Grid (Nantucket Electric) – Provides service to Nantucket Island.
NSTAR – Covers more than 1 million residents including Boston and 81 surrounding communities such as Barnstable, Plymouth, New Bedford and Edgartown.
Western Massachusetts Electric (WMECo) – Serves the western portion of the state including Pittsfield, Becket, Greenfield, Windsor and Springfield.
If you remain unsure about the boundaries of these service areas, and whether or not you lie within a deregulated utility, visit our proprietary shopping tool on Electric Choice for more insight. Simply type in your zip code, and we?ll let you know if you?re eligible to shop for a new electricity provider.
Electricity for Homes
Homes in Massachusetts use 22% more energy than the national average. At 109 million Btu of energy consumed per year, residents also spend 22% more for that energy than any other state. Due to the fact that the state has relatively cooler summers compared to the rest of the United States, electricity usage remains low. The difference is, electricity has higher rates, causing the cost to stick close to the overall American average (regardless of the low consumption rate).
Households in Massachusetts range from single-family homes, to mobile homes. There are slightly more single-family homes within the state compared to apartments, with a very small percentage of mobile homes. The average square footage for a home in the state is 2,076 square feet.
Space heating makes up most of the energy consumption in households within Massachusetts. Air conditioning makes up only 1%, which is 5% less than the national average. Energy is distributed between several different household features including,
- Space heating makes up for 59% of the state’s overall household energy consumption.
- 24% of household energy consumption goes towards appliances, electronic and lighting.
- Water heating uses 16% of the total household energy usage.
- 1% of energy consumed is from running an air conditioning unit.
Natural gas is the primary energy type used to heat homes in Massachusetts, which is consumed at a slightly higher rate than the rest of the United States. About 10% of the energy types used comes from electricity, which is around 20% less than the national average. Fuel oil is consumed at a much higher percentage within the state’s households compared to the rest of America, and around 5% of energy used comes from other sources.
When it comes to cooling households in Massachusetts, only slightly above 20% of the consumption is from air conditioning units. Slightly fewer than 60% of households within the state consume energy via wall units, or by using windows.
Electricity for Businesses
While Massachusetts is predominantly urban, the state also has a thriving industrial sector that produces, electrical and electronic equipment, technical instruments, plastic products, paper products, and rubber and metal products. Many fortune 500 companies are also based in Massachusetts including, Liberty Mutual Insurance Group and MassMutual Financial Services of Springfield.
The state has a large agricultural sector as well. With well over 7,000 farms, and over 523,517 acres in land, farmers are able to produce sweet corn, cranberries and apples on a large scale.
Every business sector within Massachusetts (especially those that require running large machinery or equipment) need electricity to operate. The major sectors within the state include industrial and commercial.
- Industrial consumes 17.2% of the state’s energy.
- 21% of all energy consumed by the state is done by the commercial sector.
New Energy Initiatives
Mass Save is an energy initiative program run by both natural gas and electricity utilities within the state of Massachusetts. The organization’s primary goal is to provide energy saving initiatives for both homes and businesses. It is their hope that their initiatives will result in communities that have cleaner energy.
When if comes to homes, residents can learn more about:
- Lighting and appliances
- Heating and cooling
- Home energy assessments
- General energy information
For businesses, they have the opportunity to gain information about
- Different programs
- Industry solutions
- Case studies
- Business forms and other documents
The Mass Save website also includes additional saving tips and ideas on its blog for both homes and businesses.
Shopping for the Best Massachusetts Electricity Providers
Massachusetts electricity consumers who have never shopped for a new energy provider before, likely had their account roll over with their old energy provider when deregulation took effect. If you are one of these customers, you could be overpaying for electricity. By taking the time to shop for a new electric company, you can start saving money on your monthly bill, all without experiencing any disruption in your service.
With our easy-to-use system, you can enjoy more savings and more options with your electric service. Whether you?ve never shopped for new electric rates, or you just want to see if you can lower your Massachusetts electricity bill, shopping for a new provider is easy:
1. Decide what feature you most value in your new electricity rates, including whether you want a fixed or variable rate plan.
2. Use our simple shopping tool to be certain on the service area your home lies in.
3. Examine each company?s rates and compare their offers, until you find your ideal match.
Shopping for the Best Massachusetts Electricity Rates
Are you ready to see what type of low energy rates you could be enjoying?
Visit our comprehensive shopping tool and simply type in your Massachusetts zip code. If you live in one of the state?s deregulated areas, we?ll provide you with a variety of plans and pricing from local area providers.