New electric submetering rules allow landlords to hold tenants financially accountable for their energy usage and improve the economics of on-site distributed generation such as cogeneration equipment or a fuel cell. Multitenant properties that are either old or have on-site generation provide the best opportunities to take advantage of the new rules. This article recounts the historical approach to electric submetering in Connecticut, then describes the new rules and explains their importance to modern landlords.

First, some definitions. Electric submetering is the use, for tenant billing purposes, of a non-utility electric meter that measures electricity use in a single tenant’s premises. The non-utility meter capturing tenant usage is the submeter. The larger utility meter that serves the entire building is called a master meter. The landlord is billed by the electric utility for the total building electric usage via the master meter. The landlord then bills tenants for their share of electricity usage using readings from the submeters.