You may have heard the phrase “energy deregulation” and wondered what it means. Yes, this does affect your electricity bill!
Consumers in Texas Have a Lot of Power!
Fortunately, consumers now have a lot of power with energy deregulation. This means that you can pick and choose which energy company you want to provide you with electricity. While this is in Texas, you won’t see it in every state. Energy deregulation is occurring state-by-state, so some have it and others do not. In Texas, you are able to take advantage of this, to save the most money and find the best plan.
In Texas, energy deregulation was approved by the Texas Senate Bill 7 on January 1, 2002. It calls for the creation of the Electric Utility Restructuring Legislative Oversight Committee, they oversee the bill. Energy deregulation was introduced to the public soon after that.
For states that do not have energy deregulation, there is one energy company for a specific area, such as a large city or a county. A consumer does not have any voice or power to say what electricity company they would like to do business with.
How Does Energy Deregulation Affect Your Electricity Bill?
What is a bit exciting is that this actually depends on you! You can keep money in your pocket with a bit of effort, or you simply can choose the electricity company that your neighbors have, because you don’t want to do a lot of research. It is 100% up to you what you decide to do.
One thing that is fantastic about energy deregulation, is that you will see electricity companies competing with each other! They are not able to be complacent, knowing that consumers have to do business with them or sit in the dark without power. Now they must be aware of providing five star customer service with every interaction and also being certain that the rates of their energy plans are competitive. In a state that does not have energy deregulation, electricity companies may not make as much of an effort, because even if their customers complain, the company knows they will continue to do business with them.
5 Tips to Lower Your Bill using Energy Deregulation
With energy deregulation, you can choose from quite a few electricity companies. Instead of complaining about your electricity bill, you have the opportunity to find a plan that is ideal for your specific needs. This can provide you with tremendous savings from your very first bill and then as time goes on. Below are 5 tips to lower your electricity bill using energy deregulation.
- Review the rates of at least 7 companies before you make a decision: This is important. Even if you are 100% certain of which electricity company you’d like to choose, do look at other companies! You have an opportunity that others in many states do not, so why not look around? We recommend you look at a minimum of 7 companies, so you get a sense of what other energy plans you could have.
- Check out what “freebies” companies offer: One thing many Texas electricity companies have, is either free evenings or free weekends electricity. Some even offer both, during specific times of the year. Take a look at the “freebies” that come with some of the electricity plans, as these can sometimes offer you with tremendous savings. Do remember this is really going to depend on your own individual usage of electricity.
- Get out your calculator: To make the most of energy deregulation, you’re going to need to do a bit of simple number crunching. Don’t be intimidated. Mostly adding, multiplying and subtracting. Some energy plans offer one rate at certain hours and another rate at a different time. Don’t just sign up for an energy plan without breaking out your calculator, to see if it really is going to save you some serious Benjamins.
- Consider ways you can re-organize your electricity use: Now, you don’t have to keep lights turned off or anything funny like that! But start to think about how you could make the most of these “freebie” offers, such as cooking family meals ahead of time on the weekends so you can quickly reheat them, instead of using a lot of electricity power to cook in the dinnertime hour. Or do your laundry during the “freebie” time.
- Understand your contract, before you sign: Even if you are 100% thrilled about the energy plan and it’s exactly what you want, understand the contract you are signing. Are there any hidden fees? Do you have to pay any penalties for leaving your contract before it ends? Be wise and ask all of your questions before switching.