If you're shopping for an electricity provider in Texas, you'll likely come across a website called Power to Choose, but what is it? PowertoChoose.org is the official website for the Public Utility Commission of Texas, also known as PUCT. It is a helpful tool that was created to assist Texans when shopping for electricity providers. Within the website users can enter their zip code to easily find electric companies in their area, in addition to plan information.
Texans Have the Power to Choose
As a Texan, you have the power to choose your energy provider, and it's all thanks to energy deregulation. Energy deregulation lets you shop around to find the best energy provider and plan for your needs and budget.
As you browse Power to Choose and compare electricity providers, you'll come across helpful information, such as:
Types of Energy Plans
When you compare Texas electricity rates and providers, you'll come across a variety of plans. The most common plans are fixed rate plans, variable rate plans and indexed plans. Let's take a look at the differences between them below.
Fixed Rate Plans
Many electricity providers in Texas offer fixed rate plans. These electricity plans are exactly what they sound like. With a fixed rate plan, your price per kWh will never change during your contract period. This means you don't have to worry about your energy rate fluctuating from one extreme to the other each month. Choosing a fixed rate energy plan can help when it comes to household budgeting because you'll know what to expect each month once you factor in your usage.
Variable Rate Plans
Variable rate plans, also called month-to-month electricity plans, are not as predictable as fixed rate plans. This is because with a variable rate plan your price per kWh will vary from month to month due to market changes and even at the discretion of your electricity provider. This means one month your price per kWh may be low, and the next month it can skyrocket. With these energy plans you have an increased risk of higher rates if electricity prices spike due to cold winters, hot summers or natural disasters (cue scary music).
Indexed Rate Plans
Also known as a market rate plan, indexed rate plans are similar to variable plans in the sense that the price per kWh can vary each month. The main difference between these two types of plans is that rates for indexed plans are tied to a pricing formula connected to a publicly available index. When the index rises, your monthly electricity rate will as well.
Renewable Energy Plans
Renewable energy, also called green energy, is leading the way toward a cleaner and brighter future. Rather than using fossil fuels like oil, gas and coal, renewable energy sources utilize Mother Nature to produce energy the all-natural way. Today, Texas residents can choose plans using renewable energy sources like wind and solar to power their homes. As you compare renewable energy plans, make sure you read the fine print. Some electricity providers claim to offer green energy plans at low rates but tack unnecessary fees onto your electric bill.
Energy Contract Length
As you choose and compare retail electric providers, you'll likely come across different contract lengths. Some energy providers offer plans with no minimum contract length, these are oftentimes month-to-month energy plans like the variable rate plans and indexed rates plans discussed above. For fixed rate plans, 12, 24 or 36-month contract lengths are common.
When you sign up for an electricity plan there will be several different terms in your agreement, one of them likely being a cancellation fee. When you compare electricity rates on Power to Choose, you will find cancellation fee information from various providers. You can also find this on the plan's Electricity Facts Label (EFL). Most cancellation fees are between $100-$200, but some can be even higher. At Rhythm, we offer a 30-Day Easy Energy Promise to our Texas electricity customers. This lets you try us for 30 days, and if you don’t love us, you can leave early without a pricey penalty.
Now that you know what to expect when surfing Power to Choose, we encourage you to take this knowledge and start shopping for a plan that meets your needs and budget. If you're interested in a green energy plan with no hidden fees and bill transparency, sign up for one of Rhythm Energy's plans today!