Americans can expect to spend more on electricity this summer, according to a new report from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). The agency is predicting that the average monthly electricity bill will hit $173 between June and August, up from $168 in 2023. Higher summer temperatures are expected to send prices upward this summer, however, lower overall residential electricity prices should keep rates in check. 

According to the EIA, most regions consume 90 percent of their electricity in the summer due to air conditioner usage. Areas such as the Gulf Coast have some of the highest consumption rates, while the Pacific Coast and New England see more moderate usage. 

The EIA predicts that higher temperatures will increase reliance on air conditioning by 5 percent, and electricity usage will increase by 3 percent. 

The U.S. average residential retail electricity price this summer will be 16 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh), according to the EIA, on par with 2023 prices. Average U.S. wholesale power prices were high in 2021, however, these declined significantly in 2022 to 30 percent, followed by another decline in 2023 to 50 percent due to falling natural gas prices. 

This is expected to continue into summer 2024, with utilities generating power from more renewable energy sources or purchasing renewable energy generation from independent power producers, the report stated. 

It’s expected this will help stabilize costs, which can significantly fluctuate with traditional fossil fuel sources.  

EIA experts believe residential customers in Pacific Coast states will likely see the biggest increase in electricity prices, by as much as 7 percent. This is due to an increase in the region’s retail price, which is expected to reach 25 cents/kWh, the second highest in the nation.

Meanwhile, residential customers in New England will see lower electricity prices this summer, falling by 7 percent with an average electricity price of 26 cents/kWh.

Residential electricity customers in the Middle Atlantic states including New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania will see the largest increase in typical summer bills, by as much as $14 per month, due to increased electricity use and higher electricity prices.

The Pacific region is predicted an average increase of $11 per month this summer because of higher prices and similar levels of electricity consumption.