Archive for the Suppliers Category

What Happens to Electricity Deposits if the US Defaults?

Friday, July 29th, 2011 | Permalink

Lady with deposit issuesIf the US defaults, raises the debt ceiling and other such Armageddon type fork in the roads you will eventually see interest rates go up, people unable to buy homes, harder times qualifying for credit and other such problems.

As of right now the government has decided to raise the debt ceiling, print more money, and keep key interest rates at historical lows for at least another 2 years.

Credit standards are tough but not too bad compared with what could happen if things continue to get worse in the US economy.

The trend in the credit business has seen credit card companies reduce credit lines for even those with high credit scores simply to reduce their exposure to risk in a terrible economy.

When credit lines are reduced this causes the debt to credit line ratio to change for a consumer and makes a credit score number decline for that person.

So right now even those who have traditionally had good credit score numbers could see that number decline simply because their credit lines have been reduced.

When it comes to electricity deposits you will see the credit score criteria hit more people because of the change in credit lines which will cause higher deposit amounts being requested.

The sad news is that we cannot indefinitely continue to raise the debt ceiling as the governments solution has simply been to print more money. Seeing credit line decreases is one of many problems with the governments answer to the failing economy. At some point a politician must basically do political suicide and freeze the debt ceiling and begin paying off debt.

You see the US is diluting the money supply by printing more money with nothing backing its value. This fiat currency is devaluing the bond holders value in US Treasuries such as China’s large investment in US treasuries.

Basically the US is in a serious crisis and the citizens do not even realize it yet but they are beginning to as people with perfect credit are now being asked for deposits to have lights turned on.

If this ponzi scheme finally ends where money stops being printed and the debt ceiling is forever halted it will be very hard for a few years as the government contends with not receiving revenue they have been getting for their ever increasing budget year after year.

The debt ceiling was raised again and hopefully that will be the last time.  Even with a stop to government spending and debt accumulation there will be additional problems with interest rates going up, credit score criteria going up and yes that means your electricity deposit will be going up even more.

If you thought it was hard to get your lights turned on with no deposit in the past wait about 2 years from now and you will see that it is even harder and they will likely want more money.

There are still ways around the big deposit if your credit stinks and that is to look at prepaid electric companies. Below are some points to consider before choosing a prepaid company.

  • Does the company estimate your usage or do they use exact usage from an advanced meter?
  • Can you find multiple negative comments from prior customers on the internet?
  • Do they disclose what the per kilowatt rate is or do they only show the start up fee?
  • What is the companies rating with Public Utility Commission of Texas.

 

Houston Texas Electricity Suppliers

Tuesday, April 19th, 2011 | Permalink

Houston Texas offers a lot of positives when it comes to electric choice. Because Houston is the energy hub of Texas many electric providers choose to be headquartered here.

What happens in the energy hub of Texas is new rate plans are often tested and released first in the Houston Texas market. Electric choice in Houston offers choices like prepaid electric companies, no-deposit plans, 6 month fixed rates, 48 month fixed rates, and even short month to month rates.

Although you have several Houston Texas electricity suppliers to choose from you also have to filter through rate plans that are nothing more than a scam.

Often you will find that Houston electricity rate plans that are month to month have the most issues. Customers sign up on a teaser price when choosing a variable electric rate in Houston and relate to it as choosing a competitive price. What than happens after the first month is a significant increase in price.

Rather than being hooked in to a teaser price it is recommended to compare fixed Houston electricity price offers. The expectations with a fixed plan are as you see it. You will not deal with the headache of believing you are on a competitive rate only to see it go up when choosing a fixed plan.

You can use the zip code chart on this page to compare multiple Houston Texas electricity suppliers and rate plans. You can compare our prices with rates you may have seen with Houston Reliant Energy and calculate the savings difference.

Energy Plus Complaints

Wednesday, March 16th, 2011 | Permalink

 

We have been receiving several complaints coming in from Energy Plus customers and would like to know if there is any truth to some of these statements. We would also like to hear the other side of the story from Energy Plus if possible and maybe they can help in providing a response in case there is simply a bit of customer confusion regarding what they thought they signed up for and what they were actually charged.

I assume what is really going on is confusion regarding a variable electricity price but would like to hear from you the customer in case it is more than that.

We do not sell or represent Energy Plus but since we sell electric service in some of the same states as Energy Plus our customers and potential customers bring them up from time to time with their issues.

The complaint involves the perception that they will get a competitive electric rate but when the bill comes these customers have complained that the rate just isn’t competitive to them when comparing Energy Plus to their old electric company.

What I think may be happening is that potential customers of Energy Plus see an ad for their electricity service and might even see that it says “competitive”

These customers sign up with the impression that they have chosen a “competitive” electric company but not really knowing what they mean by competitive.

Once the customer gets their bill they see an electric rate or final bill total that does not fit in their expectations of “competitive”.

It could be possible that these Energy Plus customers are choosing a variable electricity rate plan with this company.

When you go with a variable electric rate you are picking an electric supplier that has the option of raising the price you pay for electricity based on what the energy fuel market does.

Since electricity is generated using raw fuel commodities like natural gas this factor can cause changes in the price of electricity each and every month.

With a variable electric rate it is possible the price of electricity could go down but if it goes up it can cause concern and even a misconception that a scam has taken place.

From my analysis I assume Energy Plus is not scamming anyone but I can understand how electric service customers could assume that competitive means they will get their first bill showing cheaper electricity costs than with their previous provider.

It is not uncommon that these Energy Plus electric company customers may think their price will remain the same or always go down in price for as long as they remain a customer.

If the price ever goes up this situation can be a cause of fear and concern and opinions can rush to judging Energy Plus as a scam when it could just be that the customer had not fully wrapped their head around the fact that they chose a variable electric rate that has e potential to change in price.

To avoid price unpredictability and lack of assurance in electricity price a “Fixed Rate” is a better option for a risk averse customer. The fixed rate is locked in for an agreed upon time period.

Energy Plus electric companyUsually prior to a fixed rate expiring a letter or notice of some kind is sent out giving the customer the chance of locking in again at a new fixed rate or choose to go shopping again among multiple electricity suppliers.

If a variable electric rate is of concern to you consider choosing a fixed rate with Energy Plus if this is a rate plan that they offer.

In summary the Energy Plus complaints although sincere may be simply a lack of understanding in regards to what variable prices can do.

Here is an Energy Plus Complaint from Kurt G. that was written February 20th 2011:

Kurt G. – Responding to your post I can tell you that my rate was a variable rate as was the majority of the many complaints about Energy Plus’s overcharging. Energy Plus does not make available on there website or over the phone their rates. They will tell you that their goal is to be competitive. As for the fixed plan contract, it is debatable if this has much upside. We do know that right from the start, you pay higher rates and unless rates go way up, you will continue to pay a higher rate on average. As for your mother’s advise, I would say that my mother also had good advise, if it looks like a scam, sounds like a scam, it most likely is a scam. Please read my post that I’ve put on several other sites and maybe you will be convinced of Energy Plus’s deceptive practices.

Some of the Energy Plus service areas are:

Connecticut
Illinois
Maryland
New Jersey
New York
Pennsylvania
Energy Plus Texas

Electricity Suppliers in PA

Tuesday, March 15th, 2011 | Permalink

 

In Pennsylvania even though this state has their electric utilities deregulated if you do not choose an alternate electric company you will remain with the big brand monopoly electricity supplier in your area of PA.

There is nothing wrong with staying with the old line monopoly electric utility but by shopping around you can usually save a considerable percentage.

Not all deregulated electricity states in the US offer significant savings on an electric bill when choosing an alternate electric supplier but in PA the savings is substantial.

A very large percentage of homes and businesses have shopped, compared and chosen to go with an electricity supplier in PA other than Penelec, PECO, Allegheny Electric and other large energy brands that were the states natural electric utility monopolies.

If you choose not to shop and compare electric rates, energy suppliers like PECO Energy will continue to deliver the electricity, maintain the poles and wires, and provide the (default) electricity service to your home or business in PA.

Alternately if you do choose a competing electric company besides a natural monopoly like PECO Energy you would still be using PECO, Penn Power or Penelec in regards to pole and wire maintenance and electricity distribution (delivery). You see these companies will always own the poles and wires and so they pass through this portion of the electricity charges on your bill.

After switching to an alternate electric supplier in PA a company like PECO would have a line item on your new electricity suppliers bill that shows their portion of the total charges.

There will also be another part on the electric bill that shows the electric generation charges that your new retail electricity company is charging.

The reason the PA electricity generation choice and competition act was created way back in 1996 was to allow for alternate electric suppliers to come into PA and assist in lowering the electric generation prices that once only came from the monopoly electric utility.

See Below How Prices Have Indeed Come Down Since PA Electricity Deregulation

Beyond just lowering electricity prices in PA the electric choice program assists in facilitating energy providers in offering new products and services such as shorter and longer term fixed rates that do not fluctuate in price.

Some residential and commercial businesses in PA have signed up for such things as an 18 month fixed rate that is locked in at a certain price for an 18 month term.

Other residential homes have switched to an alternate PA electric company and have found 3 month fixed rates that previously were never available. A 3 month fixed rate allows a customer to try out a new PA electricity supplier for a short time while having a fixed non-fluctuating electric rate.

If a customer has no issues after 3 months on a short term fixed rate they very likely will call their new PA electric supplier back up and choose a longer fixed rate plan such as the most popular 12 month fixed price.

Although the PA electric deregulation act was created a long time ago the rate caps have just now expired which has caused those monopoly electric utilities to raise their prices.

The rate caps in PA assisted in helping businesses and homes in Pennsylvania avoid the wholesale electricity price run ups that occurred in 2008.

The reason PECO and other old line monopoly energy companies in PA now have higher prices than quite a few other alternate electric suppliers is due to them having bought energy over an 18 – 22 month period when market prices were extremely high.

PECO and other large monopoly electric utilities also had a built in risk premium to account for future load level uncertainties which made their prices uncompetitive to competitive energy suppliers now in Pennsylvania.

With an alternate electric supplier in PA their is no risk premium although these providers must still hedge their energy when offering a fixed rate. These new energy companies have bought energy while the market was offering cheap energy and the avoidance of paying a risk premium has allowed for substantial savings over familiar brands like PECO.

Choosing an alternate electric supplier in Pennsylvania may seem like an uncertainty but in reality many of the energy suppliers in PA have a national or international presence and are as established if not more so than some of the large monopoly energy companies you may have used for years.

If you are considering electric choice in PA but at this time are still with Penn Power, PECO, Penelec, Met-ED or Allegheny Power we hope this article has given you a basic understanding of how electric choice can help you save money.

State wide close to 1 million customers have switched to a competing electricity supplier in PA and much of this has to do with the significant drop in electricity prices since deregulation has opened up once rate caps expired.

If you have questions about our commercial business reverse auction process that can assist in getting competitive electric bids for your company please fill out our sign up form above. If you would like to compare or switch to an alternate PA electricity supplier for your home you may also use the sign form above or choose one of our featured providers.

Is Electricity Power the new clean energy?

Monday, January 17th, 2011 | Permalink

A new energy news topic has been sweeping through the papers and news outlets, and I now see it in TV commercials regarding electric powered cars.

Is electricity power really the new clean energy? Well the argument could be supported in regards to if that electric car will pollute the city it is in.

Since the electric powered car does not spew out any pollution from the exhaust beyond hot air it can be supported that the car will b much cleaner for the environment it is driving in.

But my questions is this, what about all the towns and cities that have large industrial coal fired power plants, natural gas power plants, nuclear plants, hydro, biomass power plants and others?

These small towns out in nature sometimes will be spewing forth pollution from all of the cars using a secondary power source. You see the electricity that comes from your homes wall didn’t just arrive there from the electricity fairy.

The electric power you get at your house that travels over the power lines resulted from a large power plant burning coal, natural gas, ad other raw materials to produce electricity.

You pay your retail electricity provider for this power to power an electric car. Gasoline is burning efficiently in newer cars and it is a 1 to 1 ratio. Electric power is created by burning similar oil based fuels but it is not immediately powering anything accept the large turbines in power plants that create your electricity power.

A power plant is much more inefficient because it is creating convenient power to allow electric car people like some of my readers might be to have the ability to plug their cars into their electric socket at their house.

You are right in that your city might become a cleaner city but you are certainly not greening the planet by driving an electric powered car.

You can also expect for higher demand for electricity power which will lead to much higher electricity rates for the poor people in your town.

You may drive around feeling good about your electric car but you could be the reason someone gives most of their paycheck to their retail electricity provider.

Electricity Suppliers