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Choosing an Energy Supplier

Seven Things to Consider When Choosing a Supplier

If you are considering choosing a competitive electricity provider (CEP) for your electricity needs, here are seven things you'll need to know. 

  1. The Standard Offer price. Taking electricity service from a CEP can save you money, but only if its price is lower than the standard offer price. Determined by competitive auction administered by the PUC, the standard offer price changes periodically. For most customers, the prices change on March first of every year (in CMP and Bangor Hydro areas), with changes typically announced a month or more in advance. You can find the current Standard Offer price in the chart below. It is also posted on the PUC's website.
  2. The price offered by a CEP. This is the price you'll compare to the Standard Offer or a price from a different CEP. You should be sure to compare prices over the same time periods.
  3. Whether the price fixed or variable. If the price is variable it may offer savings now, but could change to a higher price in future months.
  4. The term of the contract. If the price is fixed, find out for how long, so you know if the term will last beyond the next standard offer price change. (typically March 1 of every year).
  5. Termination Fee. Some CEPs with fixed term offerings will seek an early termination fee if you move back to standard offer or to another CEP before the fixed term expires. Make sure you know what this fee is before signing up.
  6. Know what the fine print says: Whether it is price information, the term of your contract with the CEP, or the CEP’s way in which it is going to contact you about renewing or other matters (e.g., email), be sure to read and understand the Terms of Service. 
  7. Your rights. CEPs are subject to certain oversight by the Public Utilities Commission, which has established rules to protect consumers. CEPs are required to provide you with their Terms of Service before enrolling you, and you may opt out of any agreement within 5 days of signing up. CEPs must notify you of an automatic renewal, or any switch to a variable term at the end of a fixed term. Finally, CEPs are required to obtain a customer’s authorization prior to enrolling the customer. 

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Seven Things to Consider When Choosing a Supplier

If you are considering choosing a competitive electricity provider (CEP) for your electricity needs, then you may want to check out this link with some helpful tips. 

Standard Offer Rate Information

The Standard Offer Rate is the default rate determined by the PUC through a competitive auction. As a consumer, it is important to compare the Standard Offer Rate to the rate and terms offered by a CEP. This link details the Standard Offer Rates in the different investor owned and consumer owned electricity territories.

List of Competitive Electricity Providers

This link provides information on retail electricity providers doing business in Maine.

Frequently Asked Questions

Our FAQ page includes answers to some common questions about switching electricity suppliers and other electricity related questions.

PUC Consumer Assistance

You may contact the Commission's Consumer Assistance Division with complaints or questions at (800) 452-4699. You can also file a complaint online at the following link: www.maine.gov/mpuc/consumer/file_complaint.shtml.