Customer Billing & Rates

How to Understand Your Bill

How to Read Your Electricity Bill

We want to make sure your electricity bill is clear and makes sense to you. Since there's more to your bill than the amount due, we've created a sample bill that explains the different items that could appear on your residential bill. 

Northland Utilities Sample Bill
Sample Bill of a Northland Utilities Customer

Bill Breakdown

  • 1. Bill at a Glance: This section shows you at a glance your account number, bill payment due date and total amount due for payment.

    2. Readings:  Your meter readings that indicate how much energy was used during the billing period.

    3. Meter Reading Code - “A”: indicates the actual meter reading.

    4. Meter Reading Code – “E”: indicates an estimated meter reading. 

    Other Reading Codes Include: 

    • A: Actual Meter Reading
    • B: Customer Meter Reading
    • E: Estimated Meter Reading
    • F: Manual Estimate
    • G: Prorated From an Actual Reading


    5. Cycle Number: This will tell you which billing cycle you're on and will determine the dates that are used to read your meter and complete your billing for each month.

    6. Outstanding Balances: Shows if you have any amount owing from your previous bill and any payments or adjustments since we issued your last bill.


  • 7. Current Charges: This shows all the various charges that make up your energy bill.

    • Customer Charge - A fixed charge to residential customers to cover a portion of the costs of electric facilities such as power lines, generating plants (NWT only; NTPC owns generation plant in Yellowknife), substations and metering (whether or not you use any electricity).
    • Demand Charge - This charge applies to general service customers and is based on the higher of your actual demand or 75% of your highest demand for power reached during a 12 month period, regardless of total energy used. The demand/capacity charge is intended to pay for the costs of building and maintaining those facilities that Northland Utilities needs to have available in order to meet your peak needs for electricity.
    • Energy Charge - This is the cost of the electricity used during the period covered by this bill.
    • Purchase Power Cost Adjustment - This may be a surcharge, a refund or an interim rate adjustment as approved by the NWT Public Utilities Board. It reflects the changes in purchased power costs charged to Northland Utilities by Northwest Territories Power Corporation.
    • Revenue Adjustment Rider - This may be a surcharge, a refund or an interim rate adjustment as approved by the NWT Public Utilities Board.
    • Fuel Adjustment Rider - This adjustment represents the difference between the total cost of the fuel and electricity purchased from other companies and those fuel costs included in the energy charge. It may appear as a charge or a refund as approved by the NWT Public Utilities Board.
    • Franchise Fee - This charge is approved by the NWT Public Utilities Board and paid to the municipality by Northland Utilities for the right to distribute electricity within the city.
    • Territorial Power Subsidy Program (TPSP) - Offered to residential customers by the TPSP. It provides rate relief on the first 1000 kWhs used per month from Sept 1 to Mar 31 and the first 600 kWhs used per month from Apr 1 to Aug 31. This subsidy ensures that customers pay the same base electricity rate as Yellowknife.
    • GNWT Rate Equalization Program (GREP) -  The GREP ensures that NUL thermal non-government customers are paying the same effective energy rates as NTPC’s thermal zone non-government customers
    • GST – Government of Canada Goods and Services Tax. 

    8. Consumption Chart: Overview of the energy consumed for the past 12 months . 

    9. Total Amount Due: This is the balance outstanding on your account from your last bill plus new charges.

    10. Payment Return Slip: This slip gives your account number, bill due date and total amount due. If you receive a paper bill and either mail your payment or pay in person at your financial institution, include the return slip. For more information on how you can pay your bill, visit ways to pay your bill.

    11. Contact Information: We’re here to help if you have questions about your bill. Call us at 867-873-4865 (Yellowknife & N’Dilo) or 867-874-6879 or 1-800-264-5313 (Hay River & Area) visit


Factors Impacting Your Electricity Bill

Why is my electricity bill so high?

If your electricity bill is higher than expected, there may be a few reasons why this is. Here are a few examples of what can impact your bill, but if you have any further questions, give us a call at 867-873-4865 (Yellowknife & N’Dilo) or 867-874-6879 (Hay River & Area). 


Colder and warmer temperatures can mean higher bills since it takes more electricity to heat or cool your home or building. That's why you may see your electricity bills flucuate each month depending on how much energy you use in these colder or warmer months.

Additional appliances

Increased electricity use can also happen if you’ve added portable heaters, air conditioners or other appliances like TVs to your home or business.

Poor insulation

Older homes or buildings are usually less able to keep the heat in. Poor insulation in basements and crawl spaces, or improper window and door seals, can make it costly to heat. Find out about more energy saving tips!


Guests staying over or more people living in your home can lead to the increased use of electricity since more people equals more lights on, charging of electronics and more hot water to take showers or do laundry.

We’re here to help

Did you know we work with our customers to help solve high bill problems year-round, not just in the winter months? If your bill is higher than expected, we’ll work with you to find a solution that may include payment arrangements. For example, we offer an Budget Payment Plan if you want to pay a fixed monthly payment and avoid those seasonal highs and lows.

Call to speak to one our Customer Service Advisors at 867-873-4865 (Yellowknife & N’Dilo) or 867-874-6879  or 1-800-264-5313 (Hay River & Area) or email us at: (Yellowknife) (Hay River & Area)