It looks like Hydro Quebec will be asking permission again this year from the Quebec’s Régie de l’énergie to increase electricity rates of its residential and business customers by 0.8% next year.
If permission is granted by Quebec’s Régie de l’énergie the changes will be officially taking effect on April 1st, 2019. Hydro Quebec even Tweeted about it and wrote an elaborate Facebook post explaining their reasoning behind the increase.
“Pour une quatrième année consécutive, nous demandons à la Régie de l’énergie une hausse sous le niveau d’inflation prévu pour 2019 (1,8 %), soit 0,8 %.”@filion_eric, Président d’Hydro-Québec Distribution pic.twitter.com/xhiQqTZH5E— Hydro-Québec (@hydroquebec) July 27, 2018
What's the specific dollar value you can expect to see reflected on your hydro bill?
The changes will come out to an average increase 23 cents per month for a 5 ½ home, 79 cents for a small house, $ 1.60 for an average-sized home, and $2.44 for a large house.
I know that it doesn't sound like that much at all, but considering the same announcement was made around the same time last year, this points towards a trend of electricity prices creeping up over time.
That said, last year Hydro Quebec requested an increase of 1.1% and the Regie approved only a mere 0.3%. Perhaps this is why they lowered their request to only 0.8% this year.
Hydro Quebec is also saying that they would like to request a rate that remains below inflation. The expected inflation rate in Quebec in 2019 will be 1.8%.
Other changes to come
Moreover, Hydro Quebec will be offering variable electricity rates depending on the hours of the day starting next winter.
Think of it as a "pay for what you use" model. Dynamic pricing model will allow residents to only pay for what they use and the rates will vary depending on the time "peak times" during the day.
Rates of electricity will, of course, be higher during prime-time hours, in the morning and evening, and cheaper the rest of the day.
In the end, although the grand total on your hydro bill will likely increase, the good news is Quebec still enjoys some of the lowest hydro rates in North America.