Moving In: How to Start National Grid Service for Electricity and Natural Gas in New York State


This page explains how to start your National Grid/Niagara Mohawk electricity and gas service when moving into a new home in New York State.

Moving in New York?We can help you activate your National Grid service in minutes. Call us at 347-410-8789 for more information

Moving In: What You Need to Do

Whether National Grid delivers your electricity, gas, or both, the process for activating service is the same.

National Grid recommends providing about seven (7) days' notice to activate electricity and gas service. If service is still running from your home's previous occupant, National Grid may just need to make an estimated meter reading, which they can do right from the office. In this case, electricity and/or gas can be put into your name on the same day as your request.

If your service has been deactivated (which may happen if the previous occupant moved out some time ago) your meter will need to be switched on in person. It can take up to five business days from the day of your request, depending on the availability of National Grid's staff. Unfortunately, there is no way to expedite this process.

You can activate your National Grid account online or over the phone. When you call National Grid, you will need to provide the following information to start service:

  • Your name and full contact information (phone number, and email address, if you have one)
  • Your Social Security Number, or your passport number
  • The full address of your new home (unit number, street number, street name, zip code, etc) 
  • Expected move in date
  • Phone number

Note that if you are a tenant, you may need to provide copy of your lease and/or contact information for your landlord (name, address, phone number, etc). You also have the option of providing bank details straight away (if you want to sign up for automated payment), or you can wait until you receive your first bill.

First-Time National Grid Customer?We're here to help!
Check out our guides to understanding your bill and how to pay your bill

Choosing Your Electricity or Gas Supplier

In New York, you have the power of choice when it comes to your electricity and gas supply. Alternate Energy Service Companies (ESCOs) can offer you a wider variety of energy options, including fixed prices, variable rates, and green energy. Many ESCOs are able to offer great deals and superior customer service.

How it Works: Delivery and Supply

Whether for electricity or natural gas, the price you pay can be broken down into two main charges: the costs of delivery and the cost of the energy supply itself.

National Grid is your transmission and distribution utility, meaning that it is responsible for delivering energy to your home. Delivery encompasses building and maintaining the transmission and distribution infrastructure, and transporting energy from the point of production (an electrical power plant for example) to your home. As a regulated utility, National Grid is the only company that can deliver your energy service, but their prices are regulated by the New York Public Service Commission.

While you don't have a choice of utility, you do have a choice about how much you pay for the electricity and gas you use. You may decide to stick with your default supplier, or choose any one of the many ESCOs in New York that compete for your business. 

Your default option is National Grid will also be the default electricity and gas supplier, the entity that charges you for energy consumed and takes care of all customer service issues. New York ESCOs offer a wider variety of energy rate options, including the possibility of green energy. Many are able to offer great deals that may be cheaper than what you would pay with on the default rate with National Grid.

Default Electricity & Gas Rates

The default rate with National Grid is a variable one that changes every month. You will therefore be buying electricity or gas at the fluctuating market price. For example, if you purchase electricity from National Grid at their default rate, at the end of the month you will receive a bill for electricity with a price of the kWh which is averaged over the entire month. Your gas bill is measured in therms, and the default price is also the market price averaged over your billing period.

Signing Up with an Alternative ESCO Supplier

Signing up with an ESCO is simple, but you must have already activated service with National Grid in order to get a National Grid account number. Once you've activated your National Grid account, you can contact your chosen ESCO to start service. You will likely need to provide the following information:

  • Your full name and contact information (phone number, email address)
  • The service address (and billing address, if different)
  • Social insurance number
  • Service start date

Find Out MoreHow to Switch Suppliers

​Contact National Grid

National Grid's customer service phone number is 1-800-642-4272, and is available from 7:00 AM - 5:00 PM, Monday to Friday.

Find more .