New Jersey was one of the many early states to adopt electricity deregulation, implementing the policy in the late 1990s. Cindy Gagliano of the Marlboro, New Jersey, Patch notes that despite its history, many residents are still unsure what happens if they switch electricity companies.
Ultimately, the changes caused by power deregulation were not terribly noticeable from the consumer perspective, changing only the electricity price and the line on the bill listing the electricity supplier.
However, allowing consumers to compare electricity providers has helped many in New Jersey to enjoy lower electricity rates as prices have fallen, by giving third-party companies the ability to take advantage of current market prices.
Gagliano notes that consumers must understand certain factors before they decide to change. Since prices can be more affected by fluctuations in fuel costs, customers should understand their ability to change electricity providers after the fact, along with all other terms of the contract. They should also be sure to understand what rights the law provides them and ensure their electricity is licensed with the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities.
With the fifth-highest electricity prices in the country, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, this choice can provide an important resource for New Jersey residents with the proper investigation.