Deregulation gives homeowners more options than ever regarding their energy suppliers. Many residents could save significant amounts on their monthly bills by switching providers.
However, deciding to switch can be a complicated process. Here are a few pros and cons to consider before you do:
You’ll Save Money
Many hesitate to switch energy providers because they fear paperwork, phone calls, or service breaks. However, you can save significant money by switching to cheaper electricity rates in your area. The key is to look for a plan that offers the lowest electricity rates and is right for your home or business needs. You should also check for any fees or penalties that apply if you cancel your current contract before the end of its term.
Knowing how much you use each month is essential when comparing electricity rates. You can find this information on your energy bill or by using online tools to estimate it. Also, keep in mind that energy prices fluctuate, so what may be a great deal today may be different tomorrow.
Some electricity companies in Houston offer special deals based on how many kilowatt hours a household uses in a given month or during specific periods of the year. These plans are known as tiered rate plans. They generally cost more per kilowatt hour during peak usage but can still be cheaper than traditional utility rates. Alternatively, some states have Community Choice Aggregation laws allowing communities to pool their power needs to buy energy on their behalf at discounted rates.
You’ll Get Better Service
Switching power companies is more than saving money; some find that switching provides better customer service. If you’re tired of being put on hold for a long time or getting the runaround when you try to get help with your bill, switching to a different supplier could be the answer. Just be sure to read reviews and compare prices before you choose a new provider.
In deregulated areas, the electricity distributor (also known as your utility company) delivers energy to you. Your distribution company typically sets your rate plan, provides customer service and billing, and owns and maintains the lines with electricity to homes and businesses. On the other hand, the electricity supplier purchases large volumes of energy at wholesale value and then sets your rates and terms for your use. The supplier also offers customer service and monthly bills for your electricity.
You can shop for a new energy supplier online or by phone. You can use several authorized price comparison sites to find the best deal. Remember to check your contract with your current supplier for early termination fees before deciding. Also, when you switch providers, there may be a short interruption in your service while the changeover is being implemented.
You’ll Have More Control Over Your Energy
If you’re unsatisfied with your current electricity plan, switching can give you more control over your energy source. For example, some suppliers offer a green option, which means you’ll use renewable power sources. Some even let you specify a particular percentage of renewable energy.
Other factors to consider when choosing a supplier are contract terms, customer service, and pricing. If you want to know how much a new provider will charge, it’s essential to understand your current energy usage. This can be found on your utility bill or using a few online tools. Then, you can compare electricity rates to find the best one for your needs.
It’s also important to note that you can switch providers during the middle of a contract without being charged a termination fee. However, you’ll likely be required to pay a deposit or undergo a credit check.
In addition to comparing prices and rates, look for additional benefits and incentives that may be available. For instance, some companies guarantee satisfaction for a year or more. Others will offer loyalty rewards to make staying worthwhile once a plan’s term is complete. Some will even offer plans with fixed rates, allowing you to lock in your energy costs for a set amount of time – irrespective of market fluctuations.
You’ll Have More Choices
Living in a deregulated electricity market, you can shop for energy rates from competitive electricity providers. Your local utility company still delivers power to your home and business, but they need to control the supply prices. This increased competition has led to lower electric rates for homeowners in many areas.
When shopping for an electricity provider, consider the rate per kilowatt-hour, contract terms, and the percentage of renewable energy each supplier offers. In addition, ask about any additional fees that may be charged. These could include credit checks, security deposits, and enrollment fees. Also, read your Electricity Facts Label carefully to ensure you understand the plan’s full cost before signing up.
Some electricity providers offer promotions like free nights and weekends, low introductory rates, and plans with high usage thresholds. However, these incentives can add up to significant bills over time. Often, these plans are only right for some. It’s best to find a provider offering a fixed-rate plan, so you know exactly what you’ll pay each month.
Before deciding, consider your household’s budget and what type of energy you use most. Then, shop for a provider with the lowest prices and a plan that fits your needs. Be sure to find out if the provider charges any fees to cancel service or goes back to your local utility company before you sign up.