power to choose

The Definitive Guide to Shopping for Electricity in Texas

You want to understand how to shop for electricity in Texas. You’ve probably bounced around to a lot of sites, looking for  something comprehensive that answers all your questions on how to shop for electricity and how to save money on your electricity bill.

Well, you found it. Here’s the definitive guide to shopping for electricity in Texas, to answer all your questions in one place.

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Power to Choose Alternatives Grow as PUCT Tries New Fixes

Electricity customers in Texas are searching for a Power to Choose alternative. And it’s no wonder. The Texas Power to Choose site has long been called the Power to Confuse. There are hundreds of plans to choose from, multiple rate structures to decipher, and fine print gotchas in most plans. The Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT) is not happy with the games that retail energy providers are playing. They have publicly blasted electricity providers for taking advantage of consumers. Now they are taking action to address these issues.

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What’s Ahead for Texas Summer Electricity Rates: Supply, Demand, and Reserve Margins

If you’ve shopped for an electricity plan in Texas recently, you’ve probably noticed that rates are rising. In fact, some of the energy rates for Texas plans have increased over 30% so far in 2018 and will continue to rise as the summer approaches.

What’s contributing to this rise? In short, it’s simple economics. Understanding the market forces at play in ERCOT will help you make an informed decision about your energy needs going into the summer and avoid a painful utility bill.

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5 Biggest Myths of PowertoChoose.org

When Texas became a deregulated market in 2002, The Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT) developed a website to educate consumers and promote deregulation. The site matured and in 2012 received a massive overhaul and became the PowertoChoose.org that Texans know today. A large-scale marketing campaign ensued to promote brand awareness and the PowertoChoose.org site soon became the place for Texans to shop for electricity. The site developed a large following.

Unfortunately, today some electricity providers take advantage of the weaknesses in the site in order to attract customers. As a result, the PowertoChoose.org has evolved to be far from an unbiased source of electricity plans with the consumer’s best interest in mind despite the PUCT’s good intentions. Learn more about the ways certain providers are exploiting this site and how consumer’s can avoid these pitfalls and find a better way to shop for electricity.

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The Evolution of Power to Choose in Texas: How Did We Get Here?

If you’re a Texas resident living in a deregulated utility delivery area, you have likely used the Power to Choose website to look for an electricity plan for your home. The Power To Choose website operated by the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT) has been both a significant contributor to the success of retail deregulation in Texas and the source of much confusion for Texas residents looking to compare electric rates and choose an electricity provider.

Lately, the PUCT’s site has come under fire from both consumers and providers for listing plans with potentially misleading electric rates. If you’re overwhelmed by the shear volume of electricity plans and confusing rates listed on PowertoChoose.org, you’re not alone. 

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Dallas Has The Power To Choose Cheap Texas Electricity Rates

Since the Texas legislature deregulated the retail electricity industry in 2002, millions of Texans have chosen to compare electricity rates and switch electricity providers. Giving electric choice back to Texans has been extremely popular, with an estimated 92% of residents having switched their own electricity plans. The ability to switch electricity providers has resulted in significant savings for many Dallas customers.

Living in the Dallas metroplex area and being served by Oncor as your local electric utility means that you have the power to choose from among dozens of competing electricity providers. All of them offer multiple rates, contract lengths and discount offers. In addition, each provider has its own website designed to lead you through the maze of complicated offers, which are often filled with confusing EFL details, overlooked fine print, and introductory rates. As a result, many customers are still confused by legal terms and narrow usage level bill credits frequently used on electricity plans for marketing purposes. As a result, they often end up getting surprised by unexpected fees and missing out on potential savings on their electric bills.

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How to Sniff Out a Texas Teaser Electric Rate

Texas has undoubtedly been the most successful US electricity deregulation market for residents. A lot of it’s success comes from the Texas Public Utility Commission’s (PUCT) marketing efforts when it launched PowerToChoose.org. Originally known as Texas Electric Choice, today’s Power To Choose site is still very popular for Texas residential electricity shopping, but it’s issues have also come under increasing scrutiny due to rate confusion and misleading electricity plans.

What’s the biggest issue on Power To Choose? Teaser Rates. As you work your way through the various electricity plans offered in your area, you’ve probably come across a few that seem too good to be true. These teaser electricity rates create confusion for customers looking for the best deal they can get using electricity comparison sites like the PUCT’s Power to Choose.

Despite the PUCT’s efforts to curtail teaser rates by giving users the ability to filter out minimum usage fees/credits, teaser rates still overwhelm the Power to Choose site to the point it’s easy for customers to be misled on what they’re actually getting. On a recent visit, the first five pages of the default search for our zip code was filled with what we consider to be teaser rates (and that was with bill credit filter on!)

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Use Your Power To Choose Energy Plans To Find The Cheapest Electricity Rates In Houston

Texas electricity deregulation has given millions of Houston residents and businesses the power to choose the cheapest electricity rate. According to ERCOT, over 92% of Texas homes and businesses who live in deregulated areas have switched electric companies since deregulation began in 2002. Even though electric choice in Texas has been hugely successful for energy savings, customers are still confused by the options, terminology, and overall process of switching electric providers.

Where should you shop for electricity? Houstonians have the power to choose from an overwhelming variety of energy suppliers, plans, and options. If you live in the Houston metro area and your local electric utility is CenterPoint, over 50 different retail electricity providers currently offer electricity plans in your area. Each of these electricity providers offer sites, tools, and information on how to switch plans and providers. However, their information is often filled with electricity rates that are difficult to compare because of things like introductory rates, bill credits, narrow usage levels, unexpected fees, and legalese buried in the EFLs. Fortunately, Houston homes and businesses have electricity shopping options that make the process much simpler.

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