The right electricity plan can help you save money on your power bills. Whether you want a stable, fixed rate or a prepaid energy plan, many options are available.
But how do you choose the best plan for your household? Consider these important factors to make an informed decision.
The Size of Your Home
When buying a home, knowing the size of your prospective house is important. Not only does it help with determining the cost to heat and cool your home, but also how much electricity you’ll use.
More than a small, 60-amp service panel might be required for a modern home or a home that uses large electrical appliances, like an oven and clothes dryer. Upgrading to a 200-amp service panel may be necessary, especially if your home is over 2,000 square feet and has central air-conditioning.
The standardized Electricity Facts Label (EFL) document is the best place to start when comparing cheap-rate energy plans. EFL documents provide detailed information, including TDU fees, base charges, and energy rates.
When choosing an energy plan, it’s important to understand the differences between fixed-rate, variable-rate, and indexed plans. A fixed-rate plan means your price per kWh will remain constant throughout the contract period. On the other hand, if you opt for a variable-rate or indexed plan, your price will fluctuate based on market changes. It’s also important to note that certain plans may have cancellation or early termination fees if you decide to end your contract before the agreed-upon time.
When deciding on an electricity plan, consider the season and how you use energy. For example, your usage may fluctuate depending on the weather or when you run energy-intensive appliances like the washer or dryer. You can save money by completing these tasks during designated free or discounted hours, such as nighttime or weekends.
There are other recurring charges on your monthly bill, including delivery fees from your Transmission and Distribution Utility (TDSP) that are passed on without markup, capacity costs to ensure enough electricity is available during peak times, and ancillary services that vary from supplier to supplier. It is important to understand these fees to compare plans accurately.
There are various options available from providers such as Corpus Christi electric company when it comes to energy plans. One is fixed-rate plans with a predetermined supply rate throughout the contract term and can guard against any energy market price fluctuations. However, they may only sometimes be the most cost-effective option. Other choices include prepaid plans, where you pay for the energy supply in advance and variable- or indexed-rate plans, where the pricing is determined by a formula based on a particular commodity index.
Your Energy Needs
Household activities, habits, and appliances influence your energy needs. For example, a plugged-in computer, TV, and stereo system will all take away watts, which equate to kilowatt hours (kWh). Considering your average kWh usage level can help you select the right plan for your home.
For example, if you choose a long-term contract with a fixed supply rate, you will enjoy price stability throughout your term and may be able to save over time. However, if you opt for an index rate, your rates will rise and fall with market highs and lows. Many traditional websites to compare plans and rates don’t factor your actual energy consumption into their calculations, making it difficult to find a plan that fits.
It is important to understand your energy needs before selecting a plan. The more you know, the easier it will be to shop confidently and choose a plan that works for your household. This includes educating yourself on the differences between fixed and variable energy rates.
Your lifestyle is another important factor that impacts your energy usage. If you are a stay-at-home mom who does laundry on the weekends, you may use more electricity than someone who works from home and only launders clothes once a week. It is also a good idea to invest in appliances that have the ENERGY STAR® label, as these will consume less energy than other models.
The number of kilowatt-hours (kWh) used in your home each month determines your monthly electric bill. Depending on where you live and how your family uses energy, choosing the right plan for your house size can save you money in the long run. Choosing a fixed rate plan will help ensure that your electricity price won’t change for your contract, even if market prices increase.
It’s important to consider your budget when choosing an electricity plan for your mid-sized home. Most REPs offer a variety of month-to-month electricity plans and longer-term contracts that can last up to five years. Review the Electricity Facts Label, which provides standard disclosures about energy rates and charges.
Some REPs also offer time-of-use electricity plans that allow you to pay less for your power during off-peak hours, such as 3 a.m. – 7 p.m. on weekdays and weekends. Using less electricity during peak periods can help you save significant amounts of money over time.
A small, 60-amp fuse box typically found in older homes is usually insufficient to support a mid-sized home with several 240-volt appliances or central air conditioning. You may need to upgrade your electrical service to at least 100 amps, the minimum panel amperage required by the National Electrical Code. Those with poor credit can opt for prepaid electricity plans, where they pay upfront and receive a lower rate for their usage. Some energy plans also include renewable energy, which can appeal to environmentally conscious consumers.