Consumers really enjoy the benefits of prepaid electricity plans nowadays. These pay-as-you-go plans make it easy for you to get service without all the hassle. With these plans you pay for your electricity before you use it. Once you run out of funds you then top up so your power isn’t turned off. This is similar to how you’d use a prepaid phone.
How Prepaid Electricity is Billed
The way you’re billed for prepaid electricity is quite different from how you’re billed for postpaid electricity. With prepaid electricity you don’t receive an estimated bill each month. Instead, you’re billed for your real-time usage.
Things like the home’s past 12 months of usage, square footage, and type of dwelling are all considered when you set up a traditional electric account. These decide how much money you must pay. While you may eventually receive an adjustment once your meter is actually read, you don’t have to deal with any of this with a prepaid electricity plan because there is no deposit. Instead, you pay upfront for the service and everything is handled in real-time.
How Prepaid Electricity Plans Work
There are different types of prepaid electric plans to choose from, and these plans are also commonly referred to as pay-as-you-go electricity. These prepaid plans usually require a minimum initial payment and your rate will vary depending on this initial payment. A higher initial payment usually results in a lower rate, but not always. Some energy companies also offer prepaid electricity plans with free nights and weekends.
Advantages of Prepaid Electricity
When you look at a prepaid electricity plan you’ll see that it has a lot of great advantages. These include:
- You can control how you use your electricity and how long it’ll last, based on how much you can afford when you make a payment. As such, your unique needs lie at the heart of your account instead of simply choosing a “one size fits all” type of plan.
- Electric meters never estimate your electricity usage. You’re never overcharged, because you pay ahead for your electricity and the company receives your kWh usage from the meter. This is then debited from your account balance. Once the balance gets low, you’re usually sent a text or email message asking for another prepayment so your power isn’t disconnected. The entire process is one you can watch yourself and you can keep your energy consumption in check, so you don’t receive an unexpectedly high bill.
- Anyone can get a prepaid electricity account, regardless of whether you have an overdue balance with another company, no credit, or a company has requested a large deposit you can’t afford. None of these are things to worry about, because a pay as you go energy plan solves these issues. In fact, your electricity is turned on within 1 – 3 days.
- Rates are typically the same as, or quite comparable to what other electric plans offer.
Things to Consider With Prepaid Electricity
There are a few drawbacks to getting a prepaid electricity plan. Things you want to watch for, include:
- You don’t have the opportunity to enjoy lower rates from longer contracts.
- You have to continually watch your meter, so you don’t experience any interruptions in your service. This means you’ll need to think ahead.
Determining if Prepaid Electricity is Worthwhile
Since you pay upfront, anyone can opt for a prepaid electricity plan. It’s relatively easy to find these prepaid electricity providers today. There’s no reason not to consider having prepaid electricity. In fact, some companies also offer free nights and weekends with their prepaid electricity plans.