Comparing Electricity Plans: Notes Before Switching to Another Retailer

Choices. Choices. Choices.

The Open Electricity Market (OEM) means that you now have more choice in deciding who to purchase your electricity from. This initiative is now available to all areas in Singapore except for those with postal codes starting with 01 – 33; they will get to access it from May 2019 onwards.

For many months, 13 electricity retailers have reached out to Singaporeans through their extensive marketing and outreach efforts. Before switching, households and businesses might not be clear about the plans which are offered and how it impacts their bills. Let this article bring you through some pointers that will make your switching journey easier.

Electricity Plans By Retailers

There are two standardised plans available via these retailers: Fixed Price plans and Discount-Off-the-Regulated-Tariff plan.

Fixed Price Plan

Fixed Price plans allow you to fix your rate for the duration of your contract, meaning you won’t get fluctuations in how you are charged; monthly bill is dependent on monthly changes in electricity consumption.

Discount-Off-the-Regulated-Tariff Plan

This plan allows you to lock in a discounted percentage off the regulated tariff, meaning you will always be saving money over the  prevailing quarter’s tariff.

How do Standard Price Plans Work?

As of April 2019, the prevailing electricity tariff stands at 24.39 cents/kWh (inclusive of 7% GST).

In the market, rates for Fixed Price plans ranges between 17.62 cents/kWh and 23.01 cents/kWh, while Discount-Off-the-Regulated-Tariff plans offer between 15% and 25% off the regulated electricity tariff. 

The average consumption for February of this year 2019 is as follows:

Premises Type      Energy Consumption (kWh)
HBD 1-Room 126
HBD 2-Room 171
HBD 3-Room 255
HBD 4-Room 341
HBD 5-Room 394
HBD Executive 494
Apartment 504
Terrace 850
Semi-Detached 1,153
Bungalow 2,387

Looking at the information above, let us take a hypothetical example of a 5-Room flat and compare three situations; the prevailing tariff by sticking with SP Group, the lowest Fixed Price plan of 17.62 cents/kWh, and highest Discount-Off-the-Regulated Tariff plan offering 25% off the withstanding tariff.

Bill with SP Group:
($0.2439) x 394 kWh = $96.10

Bill based on a Fixed Price Plan:
($0.1762) x 394 kWh = $69.42

Bill based on a Discount-Off-the-Regulated-Tariff Plan:
(0.75) x ($0.2439) x 394 kWh  = $72.07

Third Party Charges

Aside from calculating your bill based on the electricity rate, there are a few extra charges you need to be aware of.

Firstly, Transmission Loss Factor (TLF). TLF addresses the loss of electricity that takes places when it is delivered through the national grid. Based on a particular retailer and billing system, this “lost cost” might be payable by consumers.

Secondly, Carbon Tax. Carbon Tax is a new payable component since January 2019 applicable to facilities which emit up to 25,000 tonnes of greenhouse gases. These charges will trickle down to consumers. Electricity providers have different stance and policy on whether they absorb or pass such third-party charges to business and residential consumers. With that said, consumers are responsible in researching more about the different retailers and the plans they offer, before selecting a plan which suits them.

Since you know how to calculate your monthly electricity bills, leverage on that by knowing your options and plans in the OEM.