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Searching for the best electric rates and plans in Texas?

Here’s why Powertochoose.org could end up costing you more than just time.

Any product, company, or organization names, marks or logos shown on this page are the property of their respective owners. ComparePower is an unaffiliated, independent marketplace.

They’ll let anyone in the door…

Powertochoose.org: The State of Texas’ Public Utility Commission has created this website that lists nearly every electric plan available in Texas. When we last checked, we found over 260 plans from 64 different providers. While at first, this may sound like a good place to search for your electric plan, the lack of provider screening and the single-purpose nature of this website may actually land you with a plan you wish you’d never signed up for.

As a State-run website, their service is open to every single energy provider registered to compete in the deregulated Texas electricity marketplace. Who are all these companies, you might ask? Who knows! They could have started the business a month ago. PowerToChoose lists an Energy Score Card – but all that relates to is the number of complaints “per capita” – the number of formal PUC complaints filed per active customer.

Powertochoose allows every registered REP (Retail Electric Provider) to list their plans on the website… even the companies who have just started in business and may be very likely to fail.  And while you usually get notice and can find an alternate supplier, you could be left with a ridiculously high-priced plan from the local Provider of Last Resort (POLR) if your provider does actually go belly-up.

And how many of these random companies are going to have the infrastructure in place to handle a huge influx of customers? In fact, both OnPac energy actually decided to pull their plans down from powertochoose because they could not handle the giant rush of customers signing up for the plans they listed on powertochoose.org.

Because there is no screening of the providers offered on the PUC website, they leave you on your own for ensuring you sign up with a company that’s likely to stay in business and has the infrastructure in place to provide excellent customer service.

Look for providers your friends may be using or those you’ve heard good things about. They’ve probably been around for a while. They probably know what it takes to survive in a very competitive market:  Great customer service, competitive pricing, and legitimate business practices.

 

The Almighty “Electricity Facts Label”

The most powerful documents available to you when shopping for electricity in the Texas are the Electricity Facts Label and the Terms of Service.  These two documents contain valuable information about the plan you are considering, and every energy provider must disclose the information in these documents in a similar format.

The problem with powertochoose.org is in how these documents are accessed. Every time you want to see a facts label or the terms of service on that site, you’ll have to navigate to another webpage. This means the document loads in a new tab or in a new browser window. If that’s not annoying, I don’t what is. And if keeping track of numerous open windows isn’t enough, having to go back and forth between them while shopping is tough. How can you keep track of which plan you were viewing when you have 8 different windows open, all related to different plans?

 

Getting back to consumer-focused service

There is no choice history, nothing personalized for you, nothing beyond a price list.

So let’s say you successfully sift through 250+ plans from 64+ companies, all fighting for that top position on pricing. You find a provider that suits your needs and you sign up. Now what?  You’re on your own. The State site is done with you.

You’re linked off and there is no record of what you chose, how much you paid, or evidence of the plans agreements that were posted at the time of your signup. You get to start all over at the provider website by entering your zip code yet again, navigating another confusing pricing structure, and try to find that same plan you signed up for.

This would be like shopping on expedia.com, finding your flight, choosing to buy it, and then having to start the entire process all over again at the airline site, hoping that your flight is still there and that the pricing is still the same.

 

No screening, poor report card

How often do you call up the government to tell them about your great experiences?  The PUC site simply displays a complaint ratio of total customers to the number of complaints. Where are the actual details of the complaints?  How about those with positive experiences? They’re nowhere to be found.

You’re probably interested in what others have to say – both good and bad, not just a generic “star” rating without any details, right?  It’s important to research these numerous power companies from multiple angles.  Yelp, the Better Business Bureau, Verified customer reviews… all of these can help you better assess what you’re signing up for.

 

Overcoming these pitfalls is a click away

Fortunately, there is a much better option for quickly comparing the numerous electric providers and plans without a potential headache offered up at the PUC website.

ComparePower offers a unique experience that will help make your life as a deregulated energy consumer much easier and straightforward.

Pre-screened providers and rate plans

Find the very best providers and their very best plans. You won’t have to wade through advertising gimmicks and make 27 phone calls to discover your cheapest electric rate from a reputable provider.

Facts Labels and Terms of Service are embedded. When you want to review one of these important documents, you will see it right there next to the plan you are reviewing. No new windows. No Popups. Simple and easy.

You-centric.  Keep track of your choices over time and store these important plan documents in your account, safe and sound. Keep track of your usage history if you’d like, which will help you find the lowest electric rate for your average usage level when it’s time to signup again in the future.

Review company information of the electric providers and read real consumer reviews. Access summaries of social and community feedback on the various energy companies all in one place without hunting around on the Internet.

The key to getting the very best electric rate for your unique situation is educating yourself on the different facets of the deregulated energy industry. Whether we like it or not, this industry is a bit confusing, and it’s not getting any simpler. Educate yourself on how all this stuff works and use ComparePower’s consumer-centric comparison service to find a reputable, trusted supplier at the best possible rate.

 

Conclusion: Your turn to act.

Enter your zip code at the top of this page to enjoy a real apple-to-apples comparison marketplace that exposes all the gimmicks and helps you make the best decision possible with the least amount of time invested.

CHAMPION ENERGY WINS J.D. POWER AWARD

CHAMPION ENERGY WINS J.D. POWER AWARD

Champion Energy provides exceptional customer care and competitive residential electricity rates.  As one of the nation’s fastest-growing electricity providers, Champion Energy provides residential service in Texas, Illinois, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Ohio and Delaware. Champion Energy has received recognition by the Better Business Bureau with an A+ rating and ranks “Highest in Residential Customer Satisfaction with Retail Electric Service in Texas” by J. D. Power. Whether you are looking for a low fixed electricity rate, renewable energy, or automatic payment options Champion Energy has the right plan for you.  And with 24/7 customer care based in Texas, fixed-rate plans without hidden fees and a robust referral program, Champion Energy is sure to satisfy you. Switch to Champion Energy today, and be glad you did.

See how Champion Energy Services Ranks Compared to Other Texas Residential Retail Electric Service Providers

CHAMPION ENERGY WINS J.D. POWER AWARD

Service

Champion Energy distinguishes itself in a crowded, competitive market by offering exceptional customer service. For us, customer service is more than just making sure we have someone who answers the phone when a customer calls. It includes straightforward pricing and communication; tools to estimate electric bills and reduce energy use; and, an unwavering commitment to the Golden Rule. After all, each employee at Champion Energy knows what it’s like to be an electricity customer. That’s what drives us.

Calpine, an independent power producer, acquired Champion Energy in October 2015. Calpine’s generation facilities are in many of the same markets we serve, allowing us to be more competitive in our current markets and expand to new markets.

There was a time in our business’ history where growth at any cost was attractive. However, we’ve learned from that particular mistake and now take a more measured approach. We’ve worked hard to engrain customer service in our corporate culture by really focusing on customer satisfaction. The majority of our customer interactions, like our call center and billing, are done in-house for greater control and accountability. Our customer service representatives attend regular trainings on how to communicate with customers, including a training module on empathy. Those same representatives are empowered to make decisions without needing to ask a supervisor, sparing customers a drawn-out process just to make things right.

So, as we expand to new markets and try to increase our presence in existing markets, our decisions are driven by the question, “Can we still provide unparalleled customer service?” If the answer to that question is “no”, then we seriously reevaluate our position.

Award-winning Customer Care

Electricity customers who value the ability to reach a live, competent customer service representative, and who would rather not deal with a convoluted scheme to save money on their electricity, should choose Champion Energy. That is our service: straightforward electricity plans and a dedication to exceptional customer care.

Nearly everyone has experienced calling into a customer service department; it’s an experience that’s rarely remembered fondly. We’re looking to change that. Our call center is different. It is different because, above all else, we value customer interaction. Our customer care agents go through four quality control checks every week and their performance is not judged by the amount of time spent or the dollar amount they were able to extract from the customer.

Instead, their performance is judged by the quality of customer interaction. Did the customer end the call with their questions answered or their problem solved? That’s the top priority in our call center.

Furthermore, our agents are empowered to make decisions, without supervisor approval, to the benefit of the customer. Agents are trained to err on the side of the customer. Underlying all of this is the understanding that we should treat customers the way we wish to be treated the next time we call a customer service line. While we may not get our wish, we can certainly grant it to our customers.

Experience the difference: Award-winning customer service 

ComparePower shows available Champion Energy plans for you to compare and choose. Take advantage of Champion’s pricing and customer service today. Enter your zip code at the top of this page, or click the image below and find your perfect Champion Energy plan today.

CHAMPION ENERGY WINS J.D. POWER AWARD

Finding your cheapest electric rate, explained!

Looking to lower your electricity rate? This video shows you how to do it in record time with the help of ComparePower, a free service for consumers of electricity in areas where they have a choice in who provides their energy.

You’re not paying more for electricity than your neighbor is, are you?

Look, you probably know that comparing electric providers and signing up for a new rate plan can save you a lot of money.

But with all the tricky ads, teaser rates, and confusing terms out there, it’s hard to figure out which plan gives you the biggest bang for your buck.

Imagine taking the competing electric companies, with their fancy ads, complicated terms, and confusing pricing, and boiling their plans down into the things that really matter to you…the consumer… the one paying for this stuff.

That’s what ComparePower helps you do. We provide a free resource for quickly finding your best electric rate without any of the headaches.

You can easily spend hours, even days, researching and comparing various electric providers when searching for your perfect plan, reading through the fine print and decoding all the details.

With ComparePower, this process takes less than 10 minutes.

We’ve already done the homework so you don’t have to make all the phone calls, wade through the gimmicks, and read countless documents searching for hidden fees.

We carefully evaluate the electric companies and find those with the best rates, terms, and customer feedback, and we put their all-inclusive pricing into a simple format that’s easy to understand.

This free information is updated live on our website, 24 hours a day.

And after you’ve signed up, ComparePower keeps working.

We constantly lookout for changing rates, and we’ll alert you when it’s time to come back for a better deal.

Enter your zip code, compare your choices, and quickly land on your perfect plan.

Three steps and you’re done. Back to your day…confident that you aren’t overpaying.

Enter your zip code below to compare today’s live pricing from the different competing electric companies:

 

Deregulation is a Game Changer.  Do you really want to gamble with the price you’ll pay for your electricity?

Are you rolling the dice when it comes to getting a Cheap Electric Rate in the newly deregulated Sharyland Service area?

Some Sharyland electricity service areas (specifically Brady, Celeste, Colorado City, and Stanton service areas) have been deregulated and that’s left you with a lot of questions…

“Do I have to go with a retail provider?”

“How can I find the cheapest electricity rates in my area?”

Deregulation does involve a learning curve.  It means you will need to be more proactive and involved in your billing management because it’s not just the one company any more.

As the saying goes, “When there’s only one dealer, it’s house rules.”  That meant you got the bill, you paid the bill, and that’s all there was to it.  A regulated industry meant Sharyland Utilities did the controlling.  You had no say in anything, much less over how much you paid.

Deregulating certain Sharyland electricity service areas means a huge amount of upheaval at the beginning while everybody gets themselves sorted out but, ultimately, Sharyland electricity providers that provide a superior service at an excellent rate will rise while those who don’t,  won’t.

It also means that you have more power as a customer to choose:

  • a company based on how much green energy they use
  • a company that does not import power from outside the state or the company
  • a fixed-rate plan that sets the rate for a period of time regardless how the industry is performing as a whole.
  • a short-term or month-to-month plan so you’re not locked in

In the end, Sharyland electricity will be available to all residents of the deregulated Sharyland electricity service area at a rate they can afford.

 

Here’s where you gamble with Sharyland electricity rates

Las Vegas, Nevada, is famous for its electricity: the energy, the excitement, the entertainment, and naturally the gambling.  When you go to Vegas, you bring along a budget specifically for gambling, ideally money you can afford to lose, and you go rarely, as a special trip.

Home in Texas, “electricity” is something else entirely: it’s your favorite TV show, a home-cooked meal, and a cool home on a hot day.  Are you really okay gambling with your household budget each and every month?   Now that you live in a Sharyland electricity service area that has been deregulated, you just might be doing that!

Up to now, you’ve been dealing with one company for all your power-generating and distribution needs. Under deregulation, Sharyland Utilities, while still around, is more in the back seat:

  • Problem with the electricity coming to your home?   Call Sharyland Utilities.
  • Problem with the bill?   Call your Retail Electric Provider (also called an “REP”).
  • Problem with the electricity inside your home?  Well, that’s when you call an electrician.

Under the rules of deregulation, staying with Sharyland Utilities isn’t an option.  If you fail to choose an REP, then one will be chosen for you. This is like you in a Las Vegas casino handing your cards over to the dealer for play. Maybe you’ll benefit… probably you won’t.

The available pool of default electric providers consists of seven candidates, ranging from Champion, who topped J D Power and Associates’ 2013 Customer Satisfaction poll for Texas energy providers (that’s the fourth year running!) down to TXU, currently down near the bottom and notorious for their high prices.

When you are assigned to a default REP, you’re put on a month-to-month plan, meaning that your rate will go up and down and you won’t actually know how much you’re being charged per kilowatt-hour until you open the bill.  You won’t know if there is a charge for not having autopay on your account, for using telephone customer service, for paying by credit or debit card, all kinds of fun things could show up on the bill  – “Ladies and gentlemen, faites vos jours!”

 

So, how do you find the cheapest electricity rates in the Sharyland electricity service area?

But how would you even go about finding the cheapest electricity rates in Brady, Celeste, Colorado City, Stanton, Mission, McAllen, etc?

  • You could get the list of default REPs.
  • You could take time out of your day to call each and every one
  • You could put up with high-pressure sales tactics, customer services agents still fresh on the job, and misleading information
  • You could hope that you’ve covered all the information you need to know
  • You could hope you’re making the right choice.

On the other hand, you could enter your zip code, make a couple of quick clicks, and immediately see the REPs that are available in your area and that will suit your needs.

You’ll have access to the Terms of Service and the Facts Label.  Read them carefully and you’ll have all the information you need to know.  Better yet, you’ll see clearly where you need to question them more closely (hint:  look for phrases like “other fees or charges may apply”).  The cheapest electricity rates in the Sharyland electricity service area will be a lot quicker to find if you know how to avoid wasting time calling those who simply will not suit.

Don’t let someone else make your play for you. Enter your zip code to get the pricing and plan details you need for a winning strategy.

 

In some ways, a “Regulated” power industry is simple to deal with – they tell you how much you will pay and when your bill will arrive and you either say “okay” or you get yourself a couple of generators or a really complicated treadmill.

All jokes aside…being in a regulated power market means you’re at the mercy of the electricity provider when it comes to rates – you don’t have the power to choose even the slightest aspect of your electricity supply.

If you think the rate is too high or you’d maybe like to see more renewable energy sources, well… sorry. You don’t have many options when you’re in a regulated energy market.

 

What’s different about Deregulated energy in Texas?

Now, deregulation is a fine thing when it comes to increased market competition, flexibility for the consumer, and giving the consumer the power to choose when it comes to how their power will be generated, but it also means that the Texas power landscape suddenly got a whole lot more complicated!

Before, it was a simple arrangement where one company handled everything: power generation, distribution, and retailing. Now, it’s all fragmented. In Texas, power generation is handled by “these” companies; distribution (the wires and poles) is managed by “those” companies, and the Retail Electric Providers handle the reselling.

Instead of one major corporation handling “Everything Electric”, now you have to know whom to call and when:

 

For account and billing-related problems, you call your Retail Electric Provider.

TXU Energy, Direct Energy, Reliant, and Green Mountain Energy are examples of well-established Texas power retailers.

 

For power outages that are affecting the neighborhood, you call your Utility

Oncor Electric Service, Centerpoint Energy, AEP, and Texas New Mexico Power.  Unlike the resale end of things, you have no say in who’s handling the distribution – those areas are fixed, as you can see in this map put out by the Public Utility Commission.

 

For a power outage that affects your home only, you call an electrician.

Because of deregulation in Texas, power generation and sales have been completely shaken up from end to end.  It’s no longer a matter of paying “the rate”  – you might be on a longer-term, flat-rate contract or, most commonly, you might be on a plan where the rate varies periodically.  There are three general categories of electric plans:

Fixed-rate plans – exactly what it sounds like:  for the duration of your contract, you pay the same rate.  If rates go higher than yours, you save money.  If rates drop lower, you don’t.

  • Variable-rate – a variable rate plan changes from month to month based on the cost of generating electricity. You won’t know what you’re paying until the end of the month.  This can lead to a nasty surprise or a pleasant one.  You won’t know until you open the envelope.  The formula used to calculate the rate is crazy-complicated but it will be posted somewhere on your REP’s website or in the documentation.
  • Indexed rate plans – this is a variable rate plan on steroids that is rarely available.  If someone is trying to sell you an indexed rate plan, be aware that the price is tied to a commodity – usually natural gas – so prices can really jump around insanely.

 

Conclusion: Educate yourself and find savings and service

The best way to get into the plan that meets your needs is to educate yourself.  ComparePower is here to help you understand the market and how it impacts your choice when looking for the cheapest light company for your home or business.

You wouldn’t blindly sign up for a cell phone plan or a car loan without knowing all the details, would you?

Yet, each and every day, people sign up with a cheap electricity company without fully understanding what it is to which they’ve agreed.

They see the glittering promise of cheap electricity and jump at it like magpies on a shiny pebble only to get hammered with the cold, wet fish of reality when the bill comes in.

ComparePower is an example of a website that provides you with excellent information – but you have to know what it is you’re looking at.  Why is Company A’s rate so much lower than Company B’s?

Here’s what you need to know, neat and sweet, about cheap electricity:

You’re not just paying for the kilowatt-hours.   Your Retail Electric Provider will also have other fees and charges you’ll be expected to cover, one way or another.  Your bill might include any or all of the following charges:

  • delivery of your electricity
  • dropping below a minimum usage
  • using certain methods of payment
  • accessing telephone customer service
  • not having autopay set up
  • paper billing
  • using renewable energy sources

Now you know why, even though Company A’s rate is so much lower than Company B’s, it still might wind up costing you more.

This holds particularly true if Company B doesn’t charge for what would normally be just part of doing business, such as paying by credit card or requiring a customer service agent to sort out the mess you’ve created by trying to do it yourself online.

When a cheap electricity company advertises incredibly low rates, they’re making up the difference somewhere.  No company starts up a business intending to lose money.

Other points to keep in mind:

  • Beware of the “vanishing discount”

    • Watch for the heavily-promoted rate turns out to be merely an “introductory offer” that disappears very quickly (even without notice) or else requires a certain usage level.  Make sure you find out when that discount disappears and make a note of it somewhere prominent.
  • Ask your friends and relatives

    • if they mind you looking at their electric bill, especially if they say they’re with a cheap electricity company.
    • If their household and lifestyle are similar to yours, then your bill should be in the same ballpark.
    • If it is an itemized bill, it will have the per-kilowatt-hour; the delivery charge (which might be a flat rate or a blended rate with a flat rate base plus a per-kWh charge); and any line items all neatly spelled out.
    • If it’s a bundled rate, you’ll just see the aggregate total for the regular monthly charges plus any exceptional line items listed which may or may not apply.
  • Read both the facts label and the Terms of Service

    • While reading the Terms of Service, if there is mention of a fee or charge but it’s not specifically spelled out, make sure to call and ask.
    • Be honest with yourself about how such fees and charges might impact your bill – if you’re a chronic late payer, a late payment fee that’s double the competition is going to be something you want to factor in, as would a fee for payment by credit card if you put everything on plastic.
  • Watch out for contract terms

    • that kilowatt rate might be trying to trap you into a commitment for which you’re not ready.
    • It’s no good signing up for cheap electricity on a multi-year contract if you know you’re going to be moving in a year and then it’ll cost you to break the contract, cost you to disconnect the service, then cost you again to reconnect at your new home.
  • Watch for hidden fees

    • If you are not technologically savvy and frequently need Customer Service assistance, a company that charges to speak to an agent could send your bill over the top very quickly.

Conclusion:

Sometimes, the promise of cheap electricity is not the only factor when considering which electric plan to choose.

The good thing is that the power to choose is yours!

For all the information and some really great tips, browse around here and shop with all your newly acquired intel.

Prior to 2002, electricity plans in Texas fell into one of three categories: the electric company’s way, the way the electric company wanted it, and whatever the electric company said.

After deregulation, the Public Utility Commission of Texas decided that it was too complicated a system.

Now Retail Electric Providers (REPs) have one a few ways they structure their plans, each of which has different contract terms as well as its own advantages and disadvantages.

Fixed-Rate

The simplest plan is the Fixed Rate plan – this means that for the entire term of your contract, which is typically a minimum of three months but can go up to 24 months, your rate will not change.

This is easy for you because there’s no real guesswork involved – you know what your rate is going to be when you wake up tomorrow and next week and next month right up until your contract term ends.

Not so great if the rates drop and you end up paying more than everybody else, though, and of course you’re almost certain not to get the same rate if you re-up your contract. But you never know: you might luck into a lower rate.

Indexed rate

Then there’s the Indexed electric plan.

This one can be on a monthly or term basis with a rate that’s calculated by a formula (which they will gladly share with you) with the base being the public index or some other publicly available information.

Basically, if your rate is indexed to, say, the price of natural gas (which it often is), then it will go up and down in accordance with the cost of natural gas.

The formulas the companies use to determine your rate are simplicity itself, such as this one from a major REP where the price of a kilowatt-hour is:

[ Natural Gas Price ] x [ Seasonal Factor ]

+ Energy Charge

+ [ (Monthly charge + Monthly TDSP Meter Surcharge) ]  /  [Monthly bill kWh Use]

____

As you can see, it easily worked out in your head. Maybe.

As you have no doubt also noticed, it’s that whole “dependant on the price of natural gas” thing that can sour you on the whole deal.

During a recent heatwave, customers on Indexed plans saw their energy price double and even triple, totally wiping out the great savings they’d enjoyed up to that point.

Variable-rate

The third option is the Variable-rate plan, the one that surprises you every month.

Did it go up? Did it go down?

Even though the company generally isn’t obligated to notify you of any rate changes.

Historically the monthly variance hasn’t been excessive with Variable rate plans, so it may be a reasonable compromise between the locked-in stability of the Fixed Rate plan and the volatility of the Indexed plan.

Your choice, your power to choose

In Texas, the power to choose is yours and it depends, ultimately, on you: your personality, your preferences, and your spending habits.

If you’re a conservative type of person who likes to know exactly how much to budget each month, then the Fixed Rate is probably a better one for you.

If you’re a devil-may-care, put-the-pedal-to-the-metal type, go ahead and fly with the Indexed plan.

If you like a reasonable chance of savings with maybe not quite so much risk, then definitely you might like the Variable-rate plan.

Use ComparePower to research the available offers before you make your final selection – you can never go wrong with getting all the information you need for the best decision.

There is no question Texas is an inspiration to the rest of the nation these days, considering so many of the fastest-growing cities in the nation are within Texas state borders. But this rapid growth, beneficial as it is to the economy, comes at a heavy price – the electric grid is under an ever-increasing burden despite the fact that Texas leads the country in wind power generation.

Wind Turbine Windmill

According to the  US Department of Energy, Texas leads the way not just in energy production but also in energy consumption. In 2011, the average kWh per month in Texas was 473.58, compared to a national average of 380.5. The average kWh cost for Texas was 11.3 versus a national average of 12 cents – 0.7 may seem like a decent drop but when you look at the nearly 100 kWh difference in usage, there isn’t a whole lot of out-of-pocket saving. It’s important, not just for your pocketbook but for the nation and for the environment, to bring the rampaging overuse of electricity under control.

The first thing you want to do is conduct a home energy audit. Now, I don’t mean calling in the IRS – it’s not that kind of audit, although if it puts you in the mood and you can make it look good, feel free to don a black three-piece suit and sunglasses. Time to thank your grade school math teacher (or at least break out the calculator) because the formula for calculating kWh is:

(wattage × hrs per day used ) ÷ 1000 = daily consumption in kWh

Or you can just use that pencil and clipboard to tally up everything in your house and plug them into this handy-dandy little calculator.

Once you look at the result of the calculation, you’ll immediately see that hot water and climate control are the two largest drains on your power supply. Obviously, you’re not going to go taking an axe to your AC or kicking the water heater to the curb and switching to a plan with a lower average kWh cost maybe isn’t practical at this time, but, until it is, here are ten secrets to lowering your daily kWh consumption:

  1. Use your windows to your advantage: Keep your curtains wide open during the day and closed at night if the weather is cold, but do the opposite if the weather is hot. You want to keep the curtains closed during the day to block out the sun and you want to open them at night to radiate heat. You might even want to invest in special solar-ray blocking curtains.

  2. Use lower technology: fans are a great way to keep the air circulating and reduce the heat. If it’s not really that hot outside, shut off the AC and just keep the fans running.

  3. “It’s not the heat…”: And yeah – it’s the humidity. Use a dehumidifier and get some of that thickness sucked out of the air. When the air’s not so loaded, it’s easier to sweat and you’ll automatically feel cooler, which will allow you to bump up the AC a few notches.

  4. Using a clothes dryer should be against the law in Texas: use the natural fresh air and sunshine to your advantage and dry your laundry outdoors! Heck, why even use a stove or the oven when you can use a barbecue outside?

  5. Instead of showering and having to pay to heat up the tank again, either install an on-demand system or (why not?) hit the local swimming hole. Many people still have those old tube-style electronics, such as glass tube TVs and CRT monitors. Lose them and get in some energy-efficient LED or Plasma screens. In fact, with any piece of electronic equipment, if it’s running much hotter than it used to, that heat is electricity wafting away into the air on wings of greenbacks.

  6. Lose the incandescent bulbs and replace them with CFL. You’ll get the same light output at a fraction of the electricity.

  7. Even in hot weather, your house needs to be well insulated to keep temperatures right where they ought to be.

  8. Go online and check out the many DIY solar batch preheaters – in general, they use the sun to heat your water before it hits your tank. If the water is already hot when it goes into the water heater, the water heater doesn’t need to come on (or at least come on for quite as long). An added bonus is you have increased your hot water capacity – for free! Always make sure you research local building codes and, if necessary, get the consent of your landlord.

  9. Instead of filling a sink with hot water to wash the dishes, then draining it so you can fill it again to rinse or, worse, washing your dishes under a running tap, follow this method:

  • Fill a Tupperware container with water, load it with dish soap, then squeeze in a sponge.
  • Wet down the dishes under the tap quickly while brushing off food residue, then shut off the water.
  • Use the sponge to wash the dishes – just leave them soapy
  • Once they’re all done, run the tap and rinse everything quickly using a spray attachment.
  • Voila – a whole sink of dishes washed and dried in a sanitary fashion using less than half a sink of water!

Reduce your electricity consumption by following these ten tips and, over the long run, your wallet will thank you and so will your poor, overworked electric grid!

Many people think that switching electricity providers is more trouble than it’s worth. You may have heard horror stories in the past, rumors of endless paperwork, having to call to disconnect, expensive switching fees, and unexpected power outages. This is simply not the case.

Switching Providers is Fast, Easy, and Painless

There’s no need to settle for a bad deal.

It’s easier than you may think to find the energy plan that’s right for you.

With the deregulation of the electricity market in Houston, there are a number of power companies in the greater metropolitan area competing for your business.

Still, even with all these choices available, you may find yourself stuck in a plan paying more than you care to, afraid that it may be too much of a hassle to switch to a better option.

Compare Electricity Rates in Houston and Switch Providers in Minutes.

If you’re dissatisfied with the amount you’re paying in energy costs every month, there are a few easy steps you can take to find a utility plan that best suits your home or business.

Here’s what you need to know to compare electricity rates in Houston and switch providers today

Your New Provider Will Handle Everything.

No “Break-up” Call with your Old Provider.

Switching electricity providers is fast and simple if you know what to do. The first piece of information you need to know is that ComparePower will take care of everything for you.

Many fear the dreaded “break-up” phone call.

Who would possibly want to take the time to explain to some customer service representative why you want to move to a better plan? Thankfully, this call is not necessary.

If you wish to switch electricity providers, all you need to do is place a simple, quick order here at ComparePower.

No phone calls necessary.

Give some basic personal information, provide the home or business address the plan is for, and select your electric service start date.

All you need to do after that is sit back and save.

Of course, finding the right plan in the first place can prove time-consuming.

That’s why ComparePower displays all the best plans with the best rates in a standard, easy-to-use platform. You won’t have to search through countless advertisements on dozens of different sites.

ComparePower is a free, unbiased service, listing the best deals in your area by respected and trusted providers. You can easily organize and shop for energy according to your individual preferences.

Your Power Won’t Go Out

There’s no risk in switching providers. If you decide to leave your current energy company to find a better deal, you don’t need to worry about your power suddenly going out.

It’s against the law in Texas for a suppler to shut off a consumer’s electricity simply because they decided to switch.

State lawmakers included this safeguard when they worked to deregulate the energy market.

It’s also important to keep in mind that the utility provider you purchase your power from is typically separate from the company that handles the distribution and transmission of the energy from the grid to your home or business.

The distribution and transmission utility has no stake as to which supplier you take your business to.

If you use ComparePower to find your best electricity plan, there no catch. There are no hidden fees. No bias.

ComparePower’s service ensures that you’re free to shop around and compare rates with ease and peace of mind.

Your Turn to Switch Electric Companies…

The average user of ComparePower saves more than 25% when switching their electricity plan. Finding a great energy plan should be free, fast, and simple – and now it finally is. Enter your zip code above to compare electricity rates in Houston quickly and easily.

Why Your Power Costs May Be More Than You Bargained For
Some ads are too good to be true. Utility providers often advertise rates that the average consumer won’t qualify for. Be sure to read the fine print, and make sure your power costs are those you expected.

If you don’t know your average monthly kWh usage, then you may be paying more on your electric bill than you originally thought you would when you signed up.

The average kWh usage level refers to the typical amount of energy your household consumes in a given month.  Electric providers commonly charge different monthly rates and fees related to the usage level your household falls into.  500 kWh, 1000 kWh, or 2000 kWh.

Don’t be caught off-guard. The best way to ensure you aren’t overpaying is to first start by understanding your household’s usage. Keep your power costs as low as possible by knowing this information when shopping around for your electric plan.

Why It Matters

Energy suppliers often advertise the rates associated with their highest usage level, as those tend to be the lowest prices offered. However, these companies neglect to mention that the average household rarely consumes enough power in a given month to qualify for these cheap rates, leaving you paying more.  In fact, the average household in Texas consumes between 1200-1500 kwh of electricity per month.  Some apartment dwellers, may use far less, while some larger homes may use far more. But given that the average usage is less than the rates advertised at the highest tier of 2000 kwh, many people are left with a higher bill than they anticipated.

Here is an example from a real Electricity Facts Label (EFL).  While this rate is clearly a very good deal for a household that uses 2000kwh, it is not at all appealing for those using under 800 kwh monthly (that’s the cutoff level for this particular plan’s $9.95 usage charge).  It’s a natural tendency for providers to advertise their lowest rate, so it’s important that as a consumer, you are aware of the issue at hand and are armed with the knowledge on what to look for.

Why Your Power Costs May Be More Than You Bargained For
This real EFL Snapshot shows why it’s so vitally important you understand your usage and shop accordingly. 500kwh households will pay 11.4 cents per kwh, nearly 35% more than 2000kwh households (8.4 cents), for the same plan!

Don’t be misled by tricky advertising. Take the time now to do your due diligence, and you will save loads more on your power costs in the future. There are even options available to consumers to make this whole process simpler. Using our electric rate comparison portal instead of shopping directly with each individual provider can make selecting an electricity plan fast and easy. ComparePower lists the average prices at 500, 1000, and 2000 kwh usage, including fees and taxes, so you can see the true rate that will appear on your bill.

Calculate Your Monthly kWh Usage

Kilowatt-hours (kWh), usage levels, low-consumption fees – all the industry jargon is enough to make you want to tear your hair out. You shouldn’t have to be an electrical engineer to know how much you are going to spend each month on power costs.

According to the US Energy Information Administration, the average US residence in 2011 consumed 940 kWh per month.

Here are a few more statistics to help you calculate your energy consumption:

  • A 2-ton central air conditioner uses 1450 kWh/month
  • A typical water heater used by a 4-person household consumes 310 kWh/month
  • A dishwasher uses 30 kWh/month
  • An oven range uses 58 kWh/month
  • A microwave uses 16 kWh/month
  • A 17-20 cubic foot refrigerator-freezer uses 205 kWh/month
  • A washing machine uses 9 kWh/month
  • A dryer uses 75 kWh/month
  • Lighting for a 4-5 room residence uses 50 kWh/month
  • A television set uses 27 kWh/month

(The above statistics are all based on average home use)

Back to you…

If you have access to some previous bills, use that to help determine which usage level you should be shopping rates at.  It really can make a world of difference in the effective rate you end up paying for energy.  We have observed many plans advertised at very competitive 2000kwh prices end up costing more than 35% higher for users at the 500kwh usage level.  

Be smart – grab those previous electric bills, figure out your average usage, and shop at your average usage level accordingly.  This alone could save you hundred of dollars a year, and is quite possibly the most important aspect of shopping for electricity.