Moving can be a big job and is often stressful. Fortunately, dealing with your power and gas supply is not as complicated as you think. Here's our step-by-step guide to changing energy supply when you move :
Notify your existing energy retailer to cancel or move service
All energy retailers in Alberta require some advance warning from customers who are changing addresses. How much notice you need to provide depends on whether you were with a regulated rate provider or purchasing your energy from a competitive energy retailer; most competitive energy retailers require between 10 to 30 days' notice, whereas regulated rate providers generally require three to five business days' notice to move or close an account. In any event, it is a good idea to contact your existing retailer about a month before your move.
You will find several ways to get in touch with your energy retailer on your electricity and/or gas bill, or you can check out the contact information in our dedicated pages about energy suppliers in Alberta. To notify them of your move, you will need to provide the following information:
- Your name
- Your account number
- Your current address
- The moving date
- Your forwarding address
If your new address is within your retailer's service area
If your new address is still within your retailer's service area, you will in most cases be able to keep your account. The only exception to this is for customers of AltaGas Utilities: account numbers stay with the property, meaning that when you move you will be assigned a new account number.
Moving out of your retailer's service area
If you are moving out of your retailer's service area, you will need to close your account. Many retailers offer disconnection forms that can be submitted online, and most also have customer help lines that you can call for disconnecting your service.
Find the name & contact information of your new wires services provider and gas distribution utility
While your energy retailer is usually your first point of contact regarding your energy supply, it is important to know which utility provides service in your area. You may need to contact your local energy utility if your power or gas connection is disconnected at your new property, and knowing which utilities serve your area will also help you identify your local regulated rate providers.
Choose your new energy retailer
If you are moving out of the service area of your existing supplier, you will need to open an account with a new energy retailer. You can choose the local regulated rate provider for your supply, or you can choose to purchase from a competitive energy retailer. It is a good idea to contact your new chosen energy retailer at around the same time as you call your existing utility for disconnection (around a month's notice), though many retailers - competitive and regulated rate providers - require less time to set up an account. To start service, your new energy retailer will likely ask you for:
- Your name
- Your new address for service
- The number of a piece of government-issued ID (a driver's license, for example)
- The billing address (if it is different from the service address)
- Home and work phone number for the person being billed, and email
- The date of connection
(Maybe) pay an activation fee and/or security deposit
In most cases you will not need to pay an activation fee when opening your account, unless energy supply at your new address has been disconnected. If this is the case, you may need to pay an activation fee to your local utility to have your service resumed. The price and time that it will take to reconnect service will depend on the utility.
Most regulated rate providers and some competitive energy retailers will ask for a security deposit. The amount required depends on the retailer, but will likely range from $150 - $300. Some competitive energy retailers offer lower rates for your supply and interest paid on your security deposit. You may, however, have your security deposit waived or reduced if you are able to show good credit history, or if you sign up for automatic payment withdrawal.
To determine your security deposit amount, most energy retailers will ask for your social insurance number, or proof of at least one year's good payment history with a previous electricity/gas account. Some regulated rate providers will accept cellphone, cable, or internet bills if you have no previous history of paying a utility.
For regulated rate providers, your security deposit will be returned to you after 12 months of good payment history (no disconnections due to non-payment). This will appear as a credit on your bill, unless you have closed your account in which case your security deposit will be refunded to you.
Enjoy your energy supply
That's it, you're done! You no doubt have many other things to do, but at least you can rest assured that you've dealt with your power and gas supply.