We understand that the pandemic has impacted our customers in different ways and we want to help.
Here you will find information on bill payment options (including personalized payment plans) and how we are working to keep our employees – and you – safe.
- Get help with payments
- Learn about safety protocols
- See service status updates
- Increase energy efficiency
Answers to frequent questions
What do I need to know about my bill during the pandemic?
Regular billing and payment schedules are continuing for all customers. We understand that this is a challenging time for many of our customers and offer a variety of payment and billing options, including special COVID-19 payment plans, designed to meet your needs. If you need assistance paying you bill, we can help. Click here for more information or call to speak with one of our customer advocates.
You can also manage your account, pay your bill or find assistance online and avoid longer than usual wait times in the call centers. Visit ngrid.com/billpay to explore convenient options including:
- Paperless Billing
- Pay by Bank Account
- Pay by Credit Card
- Automated Payments
- Budget Plan
- Assistance Programs
I’m behind on my bill and need help. Should I apply for the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP)?
If you need help paying your monthly bill, help is available. HEAP, also known as heating assistance, is available to income eligible customers. Under HEAP, a federal grant is applied directly to your bill. Discounted rates and a forgiveness program, which forgives a portion of your past due balance every month you pay your current bill, are also available. Learn more
What is a COVID-19 Deferred Payment Agreement?
Our new COVID-19 Payment Agreement allows you to spread your past due amount over manageable monthly installments – with no down payment and no financial reporting.
A COVID-19 Payment Agreement can help you:
- Avoid the risk of disconnection
- Pay your overdue balance over time, with no penalty
- Take advantage of $0 down payment
Has National Grid resumed collection activities?
Yes. We are resuming collection activities for Rhodes Island residential customers. Customers who are behind on their bills will begin to receive notices that their service could be disconnected for nonpayment later. Help is available. All customers are eligible for a COVID-19 payment plan that can help manage larger balances and avoid the risk of disconnection. Customers needing assistance with paying their bills can click here for more information or call to speak with one of our Customer Advocates. Note: Call wait times may be longer than usual.
There is no retroactive interest or fees for non-payment during the pandemic, right?
Yes. National Grid does not charge interest or late payment fees for non-payment on residential accounts.
I have an overdue balance. Will National Grid report my debt to a credit bureau?
No. Please be assured that, as our longstanding policy, National Grid will not report your active account to a credit bureau. We will refer inactive (closed) National Grid accounts with unpaid balances to a collection agency (not a credit bureau) to pursue payment, after a minimum of 23 days.
If the collection agency reports my debt to a credit bureau, will it impact my credit score?
Yes. Collection agency credit reporting will impact your credit score. To dispute the report, you will need to contact the credit bureau directly for resolution. Once an account is on record at a credit bureau, payments you make on the overdue balance are also reported. Your credit report will show either “Paid in Full” or the updated balance.
While we do not directly make credit reports, you can let us know if you notice an inaccurate derogatory report from one of our collection agencies. However, there are very few valid reasons for removing a derogatory report from your file once it is reported. The two main reasons are:
- You did not actually owe the debt reported; or
- You were not receiving bills for the debt that we reported, and that implies that you were also not receiving collection letters warning you of reporting.
In general, it is a violation of federal law (Fair Credit Reporting Act) for us to retract accurate information from a credit file, just as it is a violation of the law for us to report inaccurate information.
Can I cancel my enrollment in the DirectPay or Recurring Payments program?
Yes. Call our customer service numbers, Electric: 1-800-322-3223 or Gas: 1-800-870-1664, and one of our call center representatives will assist you.
What do I do if I think I am being contacted by someone pretending to be from National Grid?
Unfortunately, scams related to the COVID-19 outbreak are on the rise, and you may be contacted by imposters claiming to be from National Grid. Scammers may try to:
- Collect past-due balances – even if your account with us is up-to-date
- Promise to save you money on your next bill, or
- Threaten to disconnect your service
Please remember that National Grid never demands direct payment by prepaid debit card and never accepts payment through these cards. For more on avoiding utility scams, please see Scam Alert.
Is National Grid doing anything else to help during the pandemic?
Yes. To support customers affected by the health impacts, financial hardships and disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, National Grid has committed $500,000 to provide immediate relief to families and individuals in need and bolster efforts by local organizations to assist communities across Massachusetts, New York and Rhode Island.
Our funding commitment is targeted to help bolster efforts to meet the basic needs of our communities that have been impacted by COVID-19 across Massachusetts, New York, and Rhode Island. Current donations were made to community-based organizations and funds, additional allocation is still under review, based on need. The following represent some of the programs and funds that will be targeted:
Keeping you and our employees healthy
We are following strict procedures to help keep you and our employees safe from COVID-19, and we appreciate your cooperation in helping minimize the spread of the disease.
Please visit this page regularly for National Grid updates and rely on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for the latest pandemic safety information.
Answers to frequent questions
Do all employees follow CDC recommendations?
Yes. Our employees are required to strictly follow CDC recommendations intended to protect themselves and our customers from COVID-19.
If service providers need to enter our home, do you have special procedures?
Yes. When visiting your home, our field employees will:
- Decline to shake hands
- Wear disposable gloves to prevent contact with possible contaminated surfaces.
- Ask every person to remain at least 6 feet away at all times.
- Ask that anyone on your premises who is or may be ill to remain in a separate room.
Are your field workers taking any other special COVID-19 precautions?
Yes. We have implemented measures that include:
- Washing hands and using sanitizer
- Avoiding touching mouth, nose and eyes
- Keeping a safe distance from anyone self-quarantined or sick
- Staying home if they are sick
Do you have special rules in place to help protect other employees?
Yes. These practices support the health of all our employees:
- Limit meetings with external visitors
- Restrict travel except for critical activities
- Stop all international business-related travel
- Increase the level of cleaning and disinfecting at all our facilities
Are there any special precautions I should take?
Yes. If you are quarantined or sick when you call for service, please tell us in advance. We have special procedures so we can continue providing essential services even though you may be ill.
Hurricane and Severe Weather Safety during COVID-19
It is particularly important to plan during the COVID-19 pandemic for severe weather and for hurricane season, June 1 — November 30. Have plenty of masks available and ensure you’re prepared with an evacuation plan that includes ways to maintain physical distancing to protect yourself and others.
These helpful links provide detailed information and special COVID-19 pandemic instructions for keeping yourself safe during severe weather:
We’re providing as much service as we can during COVID-19
Our first priority is providing safe and reliable energy. If you need service, our crews and contractors maintain social distancing and wear protective equipment.
Answers to frequent questions
I’m told that my bill is being estimated. Why?
To help protect your health and safety, and that of our employees, during COVID-19, meters that would normally be read manually, and require a technician to physically have access to your meter, will be estimated until it is determined to be safe to return to regular business.
How is an estimated meter read done?
Your bills will be estimated and are based on the actual usage history from the meter within your home or business. Usage may vary as compared to historical usage (might be higher or lower) during this time because of changes in lifestyle. Once we begin manually reading your meter again, your bill will be recalculated based on the energy you used during the months we were estimating based on historical usage. You will only be charged for the energy you use.
What happens if my estimated read is "overestimated"?
If your energy usage has decreased this year, there is a chance that the estimated energy usage based on your historical usage will be higher than your actual energy use. In this case, when we manually read your meter again, you will receive a credit for the portion of the bill that was overestimated.
What happens if my estimated read is "underestimated"?
If your lifestyle changed due to COVID-19 and you are now spending more time at home, there is a chance that the estimated energy usage based on your historical usage will be lower than your actual energy use.
In this case, when we manually read your meter again, we will charge you for your actual usage. Due to your increased energy use, you will see an increase in your bill for the month that we completed the reading.
What are my payment options if my bill is underestimated?
A payment agreement can be made to help break up the balance into more manageable monthly payments. For more information, please visit Help Making Payments.
Is there a way that I can provide National Grid with my actual meter reading?
Yes. If possible, we strongly encourage you to provide us with an actual readings from your meter as a way of avoiding an estimated meter read. Many customers are using more energy during this time, and estimated billing cannot adjust for that. Providing us with your actual meter reads can help avoid unexpected billing corrections in the future. Learn how at Metering.
Is National Grid ready for the impact of the illness and the shortage of materials it can cause to operations?
Yes. We have comprehensive emergency response plans to keep the lights on and the gas flowing.
Will National Grid crews be working in the field during the pandemic?
Yes. It is absolutely critical that we maintain the reliability of our energy infrastructure. We will follow strict health and safety guidelines as we continue projects that are essential to maintaining safe, reliable energy for the region.
Are some services not affected by the pandemic?
Yes. Services that remain unaffected include:
- Emergency response for outages, downed power lines and gas leaks. If you smell gas, please leave the area immediately and call us from a safe location.
- Regular electricity and gas service will continue, and we do not anticipate any service disruption.
- Customer-requested service such as turning on or off gas and electricity when you move and installing or relocating gas and electricity services and meters.
- Regular billing and payments will continue, and we encourage you to manage your National Grid accounts online.
- Payment assistance is available for customers who are struggling to pay their National Grid bill. Contact us immediately if you need assistance.
Are some services you provide on hold?
Yes. Non-emergency work that requires us to enter your home or business such as service transfers, upgrades, and meter reads, and exchanges will only be performed with your permission or request.
Is National Grid prepared for events like these?
Yes. We plan for events such as storms and other natural disasters; cyber and physical attacks; and “high absenteeism” events like a health emergency or pandemic.
Make your home more comfortable and energy costs more affordable
A more energy-efficient home and a few simple energy-saving tips can lower your gas and electric bills and make you more comfortable during these difficult times.
Answers to frequent questions
How can I learn more about National Grid’s response to energy efficiency programs impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic?
Visit COVID-19 and Energy Efficiency.
Do you have ideas for saving energy that I can do immediately without making any investments?
Yes. There are several simple ways to save that you can do today:
- Lower your water heater setting to 120°
- Turn off lights, appliances, TVs, stereos and computers when they’re not being used
- Dry only full loads of laundry and remember to clean the lint filter after every load
- Turn on your dishwasher’s energy-saver switch to use less hot water
Scams are on the rise. Beware of unsolicited callers claiming to be National Grid who attempt to collect past due balances, offer extraordinary savings on your bill, or threaten to disconnect your service.