Due to deregulation, the monopolies held for supplying electricity to residential and commercial customers are gone, and a new market for entrepreneurship has opened up in the utility industry. No longer do you have ‘the’ power company; many regions offer consumers a choice in their provider from among private corporations. Having a choice in electricity suppliers also benefits consumers because it forces companies to become more competitive, which relates to lower rates for all.
How Does Deregulation Work?
When energy is provided by the state, the utility commission sets the price for all customers regardless of location, or whether the customer is a private citizen or business; it was a one-size service that gave it’s customers no options. Any savings was up to the consumer through energy conservation efforts that were self-imposed. It created a monopoly where you either choose that provider and pay whatever they care to charge or do without the service.
Since deregulation, the market has opened up to enterprising businesses who have to work hard to compete for your patronage; if your don’t like the rates or service, you can go to someone else. It also takes the government out of the utility business. Less government means more freedom.
Opening up the energy market to free enterprise is working in the states that have tried it. Now customers can choose a plan that fits their energy usage. Power suppliers have more leeway to offer custom plans. For those who are budget-conscious, a fixed-rates plan lets you know the exact amount you will owe each month. For those who may use more power at different times, a variable rate plan helps by charging only for your monthly usage.
What to Look For in a Power Provider
The first step is to find out if you live in an area within a deregulated zone. Because of the population of some areas, or the lack of local competitors, there are a few counties where choice is more limited. Once you determine your options, you can compare services, plan features and the overall level of customer satisfaction among the various brokers. A company that’s physically closer to you may not offer lower rates, but it may have a better maintenance plan or faster response times.
Discover providers in your local area who can help you make informed decisions about your power supply company. There are a number of independent companies that compare rates, services and client satisfaction to help residents in states like Texas where free enterprise is working for consumers and companies alike.