Rate Classes

In general, there are three common rate classifications in the electric utility industry: residential, small general service and large general service. There may also be commercial and industrial classes. Each of these rate classes may have many subclasses according to size of electrical service required or other variations. In addition, special incentive rates may apply to any of the rate classes.

Some utilities may offer special categories of rates for operations such as irrigation or street lighting. The residential rate is used to supply lighting, heating, and small motors in residences, on farms, or in small shops. Small general service or commercial rates are generally used for commercial operations like professional offices, retail establishments, institutional facilities and restaurants. Demand or large general service rates generally apply to large processing and manufacturing operations, universities and hospitals.

Each rate class may be further subdivided into different categories based on the amount of power the customers use.