How to Switch Texas Electricity Companies
Switching electricity Companies in Texas is a pretty straight forward process. For over 15 years, Texans have had electricity choice since 1999, and Texas now stands as the most successfully deregulated state, where over 90% of eligible customers have chosen an electricity provider.
The process is simple.
- Enter your zip codein the box below
- Review the rates availble in your area and choose a plan that suits your lifestyle
- Research the electricity supplier reviews.
- Swich your provider online in just minutes using our secure checkout - Just click 'Sign Up Now' next to the rate you want!
Do all cities have energy choice in Texas?Most Texans can choose their electricity provider, EXCEPT in these cities:
- San Antonio
- El Paso
- The Woodlands
These areas had municipal or co-op electrical service prior to deregulation, and they were grandfathered in to stay regulated. If you live in one of those cities, there isn't anything we can do until the Texas legislature changes the laws to bring electricity choice to ALL Texans!
What should I consider when changing electric providers?
Retail Electricity Competition has generated dozens of options for energy shoppers. You can buy based on price, term, green energy content, customer ratings, rewards or dozens of other options. Additionally some energy companies provide free Nest thermostats, Energy Efficiency Audits, warranties and other products as incentives to help you manage your energy. Deregulation has driven significant innovation amongst providers, and TexasElectricityRatings.com provides the premier comparison experience to help you make an informed decision.
How long are the terms or contracts for utility service?
Gone are the days of multi-year contracts like those of the cell phone industry. You have your choice of contract length, from month to month to 3 years. Key considerations are: Your length of stay. For example you may be a renter on a 6 month lease. College students may only need energy for 9 months of the year. A home owner may want to lock in a two year contract, while a senior on a fixed budget may wish to lock in longer. With natural gas prices at historic lows (Natural Gas is the key fuel that drives energy prices) you may want to consider a short term product as prices continue to drop.
Will I be charged a deposit?
Most Texas electricity providers require a credit check in order for you to obtain service. A social security number is required. Most often they will use a TEC score. The TEC (Telecommunications, Energy, and Cable) Score is based on a risk model developed specifically for telecomm and energy accounts. The TEC Score is a specific model provided by Experian. Not all Electricity Providers use Experian as their credit scoring provider. Transunion uses a "Vantage Score" and Equifax uses an "Exchange Risk Score". If you don't want to have your credit run, you can check out our Prepay electric plans
If I am charged a deposit, how much will it be?
Based on your score, your electricity service deposit may range from $100 to $400. Texas has specific consumer protections and requirements set by the PUC, however companies have fairly broad latitude to determine an appropriate deposit.
Will I get my deposit back?
Yes, Texas law requires the provider to return your deposit (with interest!) at the end of your contract, or at the end of 12 months, as long as you have paid your bill on time. If you owe money at the end of your contract, they can deduct that from your deposit.
Will they waive my deposit?
Deposit waivers are available under Texas law. There are typically allowances made for those over 65, the disabled, or victims of family violence. In order to quailify, you will have to present evidence to the retailer you have placed your order with in order to have them waive the deposit. Some providers will also split the deposit over the first two bills.
What if I have no credit?
The largest issue in credit scoring is the lack of historical data. Many times utilities do not provide payment histories to credit reporting agencies. So while you may have a 600+ FICO score - you may have a 400 Utility Score and have to pay a deposit. Many Texas Electrify Companies provide alternative ways to show previous utility credit. Most often this will be a letter from you previous electricity provider stating that your account has been in good standing.
How do I get the best price:
The Cheapest Electricity Provider may not be the best. Often times customers seek out the lowest price electricity provider, only to find that they signed up for a month to month plan where their rate has escalated. Billing issues, deposits and lack of customer service tend to be the biggest issues with the lowest price providers. Additionally, some providers are using plans the require you to use a certain amount of energy to get a rate specific low rate. Should you go over the usage level - your entire bill is billed at a higher rate.
How much green energy is included in most plans?
It's strange that Texas, the home to big oil and gas, is the national leader in wind energy generation. Thanks to the Gulf of Mexico and the plains of West Texas, Wind routinely provides a significant amount of Texas grid power. You can help support Texas Green Energy when you choose a Green Energy Plan through TexasElectricityRatings.com.
How does Texas Electricity Ratings fit in?
We launched TexasElectricityRatings.com back in 2009 as a platform for customers to talk about their customer experience. So far, thousands have rated their Texas electricity provider, and in the years since, we have helped hundreds of thousands of Texans to pick the best provider for their needs.
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