In the past few years, utilities across the country — from Indiana to Massachusetts to Arizona — proposed mandatory or voluntary demand charges for residential customers. With the right resources and knowledge, it is definitely possible to reduce your monthly bill on a demand charge rate. But in many situations, including often for people with solar on their roof, demand charges can lead to more expensive bills overall.
It is becoming increasingly popular for utilities to offer time-of-use (TOU) plans to their residential customers. In a standard electricity plan, you pay the same rate for your electricity regardless of the time of day. TOU plans are different: the cost of electricity in a TOU plan depends on the time the energy is drawn from the grid.
PG&E’s new rate schedule affects utility’s entire coverage area in 2018. Whether you have solar panels on your roof, are considering solar, or don’t have any plans to generate your own electricity, the time-of-use (TOU) rates will have an impact on your monthly electricity costs. Currently, all PG&E customers have the option of switching to TOU rates or remaining on their existing rate schedule. However, if you are a new PG&E customer or move to a new address, you’ll have to choose a new TOU plan. The best option for your home depends on your electricity use habits.