Texas deregulated most of the state's electricity markets in 2002, a move aimed at lowering electricity costs by letting consumers choose their own electric power providers and their own plans. Some parts of Texas continued to be regulated, including those that get power from municipal utilities, electric cooperatives and investor-owned utilities that operate outside the state's primary power grid.
If you're just moving to New York, you might not know about energy deregulation. Energy deregulation gives New Yorkers the ability to choose among energy service companies, called ESCOs. Competition creates the potential for lower prices and other benefits that might not be available from traditional utilities. Enter your ZIP code above to see plans from ESCOs serving your area.
In terms of renewable sources like solar and wind, weather impacts supply. California’s duck curve[cite] shows the difference between electricity demand and the amount of solar energy available throughout the day. On a sunny day, solar power floods the electricity generation market and then drops during sunless evening, when electricity demand peaks.
Prepaid electricity plans are yet another option available to Texas customers. Prepaid plans let you avoid credit checks and deposits by pre-paying for your electricity. Prepaid electricity plans typically do not have a fixed duration and operate on a pay-as-you-go basis. Shopping for prepaid electricity can often yield relatively cheap electricity with no deposit. See Prepaid Electricity: Is It Right For Me? for more.
Utilities, or energy companies, in Maryland offer customers information to know how much they are spending on electric supply each month. Baltimore Gas & Electric Co., for example, provides a tool known as the Standard Offer Service, which shows customers how much they can expect to pay for energy supply each month. Current supply rates show that BGE customers will pay 8.225 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh). ChooseEnergy.com, as of mid-May, offers a 36-month plan that could save 13 percent on that rate now.
Switching energy providers can save you money on your monthly electric bill and can help save the environment if you decide to switch to a supplier that uses renewable energy. Before you make the switch, it's important that you do your research and consider all your options. Once you decide on which company to switch to, it's just a matter of making a call or registering online.
In order to actually know what your monthly bill would be, and how it is going to be determined, you’ll need to know about how much energy you use each month and do some simple math to determine how their rates will affect your monthly bills. Without doing this, you’ll end up paying a rate that isn’t anywhere near what you saw advertised because many energy companies show only their lowest rates for high energy users in their marketing.