Since November 1, 2020, there are two electricity rate options that residential and small business customers, who are billed under the provincial Regulated Price Plan (RPP), can choose from: time-of-use (TOU) rates and tiered rates.
As such, residential and small business customers who are billed under the RPP and want to change rate plan can submit a rate selection form to Hydro Ottawa.
So what’s the difference?
Under the time-of-use pricing, you pay a different rate for electricity depending on the time of day and day of the week you consume it. Time-of-use has three periods: on-peak (when energy demand and cost is high), mid-peak (when energy demand and cost is moderate) and off-peak (when energy demand and cost is low). The Ontario Energy Board (OEB) set these rates. Learn more about the time-of-use rate structure.
Starting May 1, 2021, time-of-use rates are as follows:
Customers under tiered rates pay one set rate for the electricity they consume up to a predetermined kilowatt-hour (kWh) threshold each month. Once customers exceed the monthly threshold, they are billed at a higher rate per kWh for all additional electricity consumed in that month.
The threshold changes with the seasons for residential customers:
- In the summer period (May 1 – October 31), the Tier threshold for residential customers is 600 kWh.
- In the winter period (November – April) the Tier threshold for residential customers is 1000 kWh.
The Tier threshold for small business customers is 750 kWh all year round.
The Ontario Energy Board (OEB) set these rates. Learn more about tiered pricing.
Starting May 1, 2021, tiered rates and thresholds are as follows:
First 600 kWh: 9.8 ¢
Above 600 kWh: 11.5 ¢
First 750 kWh: 9.8 ¢
Above 750 kWh: 11.5 ¢
Are you considering a switch?
To better understand the potential impacts of a rate change on your bill, it’s important to know what your overall energy consumption is and how your day-to-day habits can influence your energy costs.
The information contained on your Hydro Ottawa MyAccount customer portal should be a good indicator of your consumption habits and electricity usage history. If you don’t have an online account, you can easily create one today.
Once in MyAccount, have a look at some of your past electricity bills and consider the following:
Your price plan
Do you pay TOU or tiered prices for your electricity?
Your consumption pattern and your usage
When do you use electricity and how much electricity do you use in a month?
Lifestyle and daily habits
Are you often home during the day on weekdays, so that shifting your usage is more challenging? Do you have large appliances that you need to run during the day on weekdays? Can you shift more of that usage to nighttime or weekend hours?
You should also keep in mind the effect of COVID-19 on your electricity consumption (for instance, you may be working from home when you normally wouldn’t be).
Where can I find information to help me choose?
The Ontario Energy Board (OEB) has released a number of tools to help consumers, including an energy bill calculator to compare what your electricity bill might look like if you switched from TOU to tiered pricing, and a dedicated customer choice webpage available at oeb.ca/choice.
Is there a deadline to choose between the two rate plans?
There is no deadline to choose. You can request to change your rate plan at any time, on or after October 13, 2020.
If you don’t wish to make a change, there is nothing you need to do. You’ll continue to be billed under your current rate plan. The option to change rate plan will always be available.
How do I change my rate plan?
If you wish to make a change in your rate plan, for example, opt-out of time-of-use (TOU) in favour of tiered rates, you must complete a rate selection form. The form can be completed at any time on or after October 13, 2020.
Depending on when we receive your completed form, the rate change could go into effect as early as the first billing period for consumption on or post November 1, 2020.
Hydro Ottawa offers different ways to complete the rate selection form.
Before you start, make sure to have the following information at hand. You will need:
- Your electricity bill account number (First 10 digits - as it appears on your bill)
- Your service address (as it appears on your bill); and
- You must be authorized on the account to request the rate change.
ONLINE: Through Hydro Ottawa’s MyAccount customer portal. This is the preferred method to complete your form. It’s quick to submit, and no need to save and send. It’s also the most efficient way to process your request.
A valid email address is required.
BY PHONE: Our call center representatives can also help you complete your rate selection form over the phone. Your call will be recorded to document all information.
Phone: 613 738-6400
Weekdays, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. (excluding statutory holidays).
BY MAIL: You may print the completed signed form and send it by mail. If you do not have the ability to print the form, please contact us and we will send you a copy.
Mail: Hydro Ottawa
PO Box 8700
Ottawa, ON K1G 3S4
Attn: Customer Service – Rate Selection Form
Want to learn more about the customer choice initiative?
For more information, you can also visit the Ontario Energy Board’s customer choice initiative dedicated web page at oeb.ca/choice.
Regardless of your choice, you will continue to receive your bill from Hydro Ottawa and enjoy the same clean, reliable and safe supply of energy and customer service.