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Residential Electric Rates & Line Items

Rates for Customers Who Live Inside the City of Austin

Austin Energy electric bills consistently rank among the lowest in Texas for average residential users and also rank lower than national averages.

Austin Energy customers use less electricity than customers in other utilities because of our emphasis on energy efficiency and protecting the environment.

Additionally, policies adopted by the Austin City Council such as Austin Energy’s Resource, Generation and Climate Protection Plan establish energy efficiency goals to help our customers conserve and keep their bills low.

Council Adopted New Rates Effective January 1, 2017

On August 29, 2016, Austin City Council set new, lower electric rates. The impact of these reductions will show up in bills starting January 1, 2017.  Residential customers overall will see an approximately $5 million reduction in their bills. 

Part of the rate change includes switching from a seasonal energy rate to an annual energy rate. Under the previous rate tariff, customers paid higher energy charges in the summer months than they did the rest of the year. The new energy rates will be the same all year long. 

Lower Energy Rates During Hottest Time of the Year

Starting with the January 2017 billing cycle, the energy charge will increase slightly from previous rates but will not change in June: the result will be a lower energy rate during the hottest and most expensive time of the year for most of our customers. This change will decrease the amount of money most customers pay each year and will lead to more predictable bills month to month.

Inside Rates: Five-Tier Rate Structure

As an outgrowth of these plans, the Austin City Council adopted a five-tier rate structure that rewards City of Austin customers who use less electricity with lower rates. 

With the five-tier rate structure, you can see how lowering your electric usage can result in lower bills. You can lower your electric usage by modifying your energy use or by making energy-efficiency improvements to your home.

Learn how to save money with whole-home energy improvements

Austin Energy Residential Electric Rates, Effective January 2017
Billing Components   Inside Residential
Customer Charge – ($ per month) $10.00
Energy Charge – (¢ per kWh)
Tier 1: 0 – 500 kWh   2.801¢
Tier 2: 501 – 1000 kWh   5.832¢
Tier 3: 1001 – 1500 kWh   7.814¢
Tier 4: 1501 – 2500 kWh   9.314¢
Tier 5: > 2500 kWh   10.814¢
Power Supply Adjustment - Non-Summer (¢ per kWh) 2.727¢
Power Supply Adjustment - Summer (¢ per kWh) 2.829¢
Community Benefit Charges - (¢ per kWh)
Customer Assistance Program 0.172¢
Service Area Street Lighting 0.138¢
Energy Efficiency Programs 0.251¢
Regulatory Charge - (¢ per kWh) 1.343¢

Summer and Winter Seasonal Power Supply Rates

In addition to the energy charge, the second major component of your bill is the Power Supply Adjustment (PSA). Unlike the energy charge, the PSA will vary between summer and non-summer months.

Austin Energy buys the power needed by our customers from the Texas electric grid at market prices. When demand for power peaks in the summer, so do our costs.  To cover these pass-through costs, summer power supply rates are higher than our winter rates.

Summer rates are in effect June, July, August, and September. 

Example - Inside City of Austin Customers, 1000 kWh Summer Rates
Line Item kWh Per Tier Charges
Customer Charge $10.00
Tier 1 500 $14.01
Tier 2 500 $29.16
Tier 3 0 $0.00
Tier 4 0 $0.00
Tier 5 0 $0.00
Regulatory Charges   $13.43
Community Benefit Charges   $5.61
Power Supply Adjustment   $28.29
City Sales Tax 1% $1.00
TOTAL BILL $101.50
Example - Inside City of Austin Customers, 1000 kWh Winter Rates
Line Item kWh Per Tier Charges
Customer Charge $10.00
Tier 1 500 $14.01
Tier 2 500 $29.16
Tier 3   $0.00
Tier 4   $0.00
Tier 5   $0.00
Regulatory Charges   $13.43
Community Benefit Charges   $5.61
Power Supply Adjustment   $27.27
City Sales Tax 1% $0.99
TOTAL BILL $100.47

Customer Charge — The fixed Customer Charge of $10 helps cover the costs for billing, metering, collections, customer service, and other account management costs.

Power Supply Adjustment — The Power Supply Adjustment recovers dollar-for-dollar the net costs of the kilowatt-hours used by customers. Austin Energy makes no profit on this dollar-for-dollar pass-through charge. It covers fuel for our power plants, the cost of electricity purchased from the grid and any net revenues (or losses) experienced as Austin Energy produces and sells power to the grid.

The Power Supply Adjustment is adjusted to reflect the current price of fuel and projected Austin Energy power purchases.

Download the Power Supply Adjustment (pdf)

Regulatory Charge — The Regulatory Charge recovers dollar-for-dollar Austin Energy’s share of the statewide costs of managing, using, and maintaining the transmission grid, as well as other regulatory fees and penalties.

ERCOT charges and fees are based on Austin Energy’s share of the summer statewide peak demand— about 4% of the statewide total. 

Statewide transmission expenses have increased approximately 20% per year since 2013, due in large part to a $7 billion expansion of transmission capacity built to deliver renewable energy from west Texas to the state’s largest cities. These costs are reviewed, approved, and apportioned under rules established by the state Public Utility Commission of Texas.

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