Back to All Locations

In the early 2000s, the state of Ohio began deregulating its electricity market, forcing utility companies to sell off many of their assets to make way for competition. Because of deregulation, Ohio residents and businesses are now able to shop around for lower electric supply rates.

As a Columbus Southern Power customer, you are able to compare “retail electricity providers” and their rates to find lower pricing and more flexible and customized plans. No matter who supplies your electricity, Columbus Southern Power will continue to deliver and service your electricity with the same reliability as it always has. Not much will change besides a different rate on your bill.

Read on to learn more about what you need to know when comparing retail electricity providers and how to switch.

Columbus Southern Power Service Territory

Columbus Southern Power (officially AEP Ohio) serves over 800,000 customers in Southeast Ohio as well as the city of Columbus.

The utility is regulated by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO).


Switch for Savings and Other Benefits

What creates lower electric rate pricing in deregulated markets is competition. Prior to deregulation, you would be forced to purchase your electricity from your utility, Columbus Southern Power. When the market opened up to competition, retail electricity providers saw that the only realistic way of gaining customers would be to offer lower rates than the utility’s. Competition not only drives lower pricing, but also drives providers to create more customized and flexible plans as well as more innovative products and services.
How you benefit through electric choice:

  • The choice between different retail electricity providers
  • The choice between different rate plans and options
  • More control over the features of your plan
  • The same reliability of electric service through Columbus Southern Power


How to Find the Best Provider for Your Electricity Needs was established to make available the most pertinent information to help you choose the best retail electricity provider for you. Our free Compare& Switch tool (located at the top of this page) takes out the time consuming process of researching individual retail electricity providers. Type in your zip code, select “AEP Ohio: Columbus” as your utility, and then you can view a list of some of the best providers in your area.

As you look through the list of providers and plans, have a recent utility bill on hand so you can compare your rate with offered rates. The rate you are currently paying is expressed in cents per kilowatt hour (kWh) and can be found on the “electric supply” or “electric generation” section of your bill. Look for a rate that is below that of what you’re currently paying through Columbus Southern Power (or your retail electricity provider).

It is important that you read through a plan’s terms carefully. In addition to rate pricing, consider whether you would be more comfortable with a fixed or variable rate as well as how long you would like your plan to last. In addition, look for other fees, incentives, and any other information that could add or subtract value from your plan.

How to Switch to a Retail Electricity Provider

The switching process is simple once you have decided on the best provider and plan for your particular needs. You can easily sign-up online through the Compare & Switch tool or by calling the provider of your choice. The only thing you will need to sign up is the information on your most recent electric bill. You will not have to contact Columbus Southern Power, as the new provider will do all of the switching for you.

You will see your new rate on your bill within one to two billing cycles. Columbus Southern Power will continue to deliver the electricity to your home or business, send your bill, maintain all wires and poles in the area, and respond to emergencies such as power outages.

If you have and questions or concerns, or if you’re having trouble with our Compare & Switch tool, please feel free to contact us here or email us at