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New electricity tariffs in Spain: we will pay more if we do not follow these tips

At the end of January 2020 was published in the BOE the circular that established the way to calculate the transmission and distribution tolls of electricity and, therefore, the electricity bill of companies and households will be affected.

The Government has decided that it will be applied next June. These changes, which nobody paid attention to at the beginning of last year, are now a demand of many households as they see how the price of electricity has shot up since the beginning of the year.

The main change in the new electricity bill is that users will pay more or less depending on the hours they use electricity, i.e., at what time they turn on the television, the washing machine, etc.

Therefore, for users who have contracted the regulated price, and with a contracted power of 15KW or less, the electricity will have different prices if the hours are peak, flat or valley.

How is our electricity bill going to change?

If the user has contracted the regulated price, the new electricity billing periods (peak, flat or valley) will be automatically applied, and will be reflected in the bill without the user having to make or request any change.

Depending on the time the electricity consumption is made, the user will pay more or less according to the following established periods:

Peak hour, when electricity is more expensive, and includes from 10 am to 2 pm and from 6 pm to 10 pm.
Flat hour, electricity is cheaper than in the peak hour, and includes from 8 to 10 a.m., from 2 to 6 p.m. and from 10 to 12 p.m. until midnight.

Off-peak hour, the cheapest electricity of all, and includes from 12:00 am to 8:00 am.

There are several exceptions, and they are as follows: – In Ceuta and Melilla, the periods mentioned above begin and end one hour later, except when flat time is applied between 11 p.m. and midnight. – On weekends and holidays only the off-peak rate will be applied to users, i.e., electricity will be cheaper all day long.

When these changes are applied, the user will be able to contract different powers in different time slots throughout the day.

How to choose the best electricity tariff?

Choosing the best or cheapest electricity tariff is only possible if the user knows what his consumption is, at what time it is higher and what his needs and consumption habits are. To know this, the user can access his load curve.

The load curve is a graph where you can see in detail how your electricity consumption develops on a particular day and at what time of day it is higher. The load curve of your consumption can be accessed through the customer area of your electricity distributor.

In addition to knowing the consumption, it is important that the user takes into account other factors such as the contracting conditions of the tariff, that is to say, we must look for the company according to our needs of electricity consumption.

We must select the cheapest and most competitive tariffs in the electricity sector in 2021, since depending on the company they do not offer us the same prices. Here is a selection:

Light Tariffs Tables

How to save on your electricity bill?

The new tariffs make users to carry out the electricity consumption in 3 periods of energies and 2 powers. To avoid surprises in the bill, it will be necessary to concentrate the consumption in the off-peak periods, which is the cheapest.

It is also necessary to achieve savings in the contracted power in the peak period, which is more expensive, while reducing the power in the off-peak period would not bring significant savings.

Therefore, what is in the user’s interest is to have more contracted power in the off-peak period if there is going to be more consumption during that period of time or on weekends, or if you have, for example, an electric car that you recharge at night.

We must take into account that reducing the contracted power, which in most houses is higher than necessary, reduces the bill. This may be the easiest way to be able to save on the electricity bill.

Another thing we can do is to change the light bulbs in our home for LED bulbs. This can mean a lower consumption, because this type of bulbs consume 80% less than other types of bulbs.

There are intelligent bulbs that can be programmed with certain time slots so that they turn on and off or the power or hue can be modified according to the time slot we set.

With the new tariffs we can contract 2 different powers and use them during the same day, so the use of LED or smart bulbs can represent a significant saving in the electricity bill.

Finally, if as a user you want to go a little further, and stop overpaying on your electricity bill and start depending less on electricity companies, then the best option is self-consumption through solar panels.

The initial investment is still high but the monthly savings on bills can be quite significant and also with totally non-polluting energy. Currently the company ‘Hola Luz’ is offering this service for households.

Government slightly reduces the price of electricity system charges and capacity payments

The Official State Gazette (BOE) has published the order that fixes the prices of the electricity system charges and capacity payments, which will allow the entry into force of the new structure of the electricity bill as from June 1st.

The charges finance the regulated costs of the electricity system with the exception of the remuneration of the transmission and distribution networks.

In the case of the Spanish electricity system, the most relevant are the cost of the special regime for renewable energies, cogeneration and generation with waste (Recore), the coverage of the deficit from previous years and the compensation of 50% of the excess cost of generation in non-peninsular territories.

Specifically, the total amount of the electricity system charges amounts to some 9,578 million euros, while the income destined to compensate these charges amounts to some 2,956 million euros, mainly coming from the tax figures of Law 15/2012, of 27 December, and from the auctions of CO2 emission rights, which leaves an amount of charges to be financed by consumers in 2021 of 6,621 million euros.

The approved order establishes the prices for 2021 of the different tariff segments of the electricity system charges, the prices applicable to public access electric vehicle charging points and the unit prices to be applied to the financing of capacity payments.

According to the order, the percentages to be applied for the purposes of the information on the destination of the cost of the electricity system charges in the electricity bill will be 47.93% for the Recore, 37.89% for the deficit, 14.04% for the non-peninsular territories and 0.13% for other concepts.

This order is developed in application of the draft Royal Decree establishing the methodology for calculating electricity bill charges.

The aim of these charge prices is to ensure that the revenues of the electricity system in 2021 are sufficient to cover the total amount of the regulated costs that finance the charges in this fiscal year.

ROYAL DECREE ON THE METHODOLOGY OF CHARGES

This order thus complements the Royal Decree on the methodology for calculating electricity system charges approved last March by the Government, which defines that the calculation of charges will have a fixed and a variable part, which will be determined on the basis of the contracted power and the energy consumed, respectively.

Together with the transmission and distribution tolls – set by the National Competition Market Commission (CNMC) – the charges make up the regulated part of the electricity bill.

The approved methodology establishes a similar structure of charges to the transmission and distribution tolls in order to bring coherence and simplicity to the system.

To bring simplicity and coherence to the system, the Royal Decree assumes the same tariff structure, by voltage levels, as that set by the National Markets and Competition Commission (CNMC) in its methodology for calculating electricity transmission and distribution tolls. The same billing components are also used and a charge structure with hourly discrimination has been chosen, using the same design of periods as that proposed by the regulator for the tolls.

The most noteworthy aspect of this tariff structure, initially set by the CNMC and reproduced in the Royal Decree, is that all consumers with a contracted power of less than 15 kW -most domestic users and SMEs- will now have three differentiated billing periods.

The text also adapts the figure of the Voluntary Price for the Small Consumer (PVPC) to the new structure of tolls and charges. The scheme for the distribution of charges will make it possible to recover an amount equivalent to that obtained with the prices of access tolls and capacity payments in force for each tariff segment.

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