A lot goes into choosing an electricity plan that fits your energy usage and budget. A variable rate plan may save money if you actively follow energy market prices.
However, this type of plan can be risky if market prices dip during your contract period. Here are a few things you should consider.
Stay On Top of Your Electricity Usage
It’s important to keep track of your electricity usage. An energy provider like Pasadena electric company can only charge you if they know exactly how much electricity you use. If your bill seems higher than usual, check your meter to see if there are any errors. If there are, contact your supplier right away to dispute the charge.
If you have a fixed rate plan, the per-kilowatt-hour price will change once your contract expires. If electricity prices are high, this could save you money. However, if electricity prices drop, your per-kilowatt-hour rate will also decrease, which could be costly.
Another way to stay on top of your electricity usage is to pay by direct debit. This will help you avoid late charges. It would help if you also tried to use appliances during cheaper off-peak hours. Lastly, make sure to unplug any devices that are not in use. Unplugging phone chargers, hair dryers, and TVs can reduce energy usage.
The advantage of variable-rate plans is that your per-kilowatt-hour rates fluctuate depending on market conditions. This can make it hard to budget your energy costs. Also, if electricity prices are going up, your rates will too. For this reason, many people prefer a fixed-rate plan.
Switch to A More Energy-Efficient Appliance
A fixed-rate electric plan locks in the price per kilowatt hour for the length of your contract, protecting you from energy market fluctuations. This can be especially helpful if you’re worried about sudden electricity price spikes. However, if market prices drop during your contract, you will be stuck paying the lower, locked-in rate until your contract ends.
Whether you have a variable-rate or fixed-rate plan, you can save by making smarter choices to reduce energy consumption. For example, lowering the hot water you use can significantly decrease your electricity bill. Also, reducing your usage during peak hours (4-7 pm weekdays) can help reduce costs.
Another way to save is by reducing your “always-on” electronics, like TVs, DVD players, and VCRs. These devices consume the most home power, so switching to new, more efficient appliances can greatly impact your electricity bills. Finally, using a programmable thermostat can also greatly affect your energy usage. This will allow you to turn appliances off when prices are highest while keeping your house comfortable during the day’s remaining hours. This will help reduce your electricity bills even further. If you want to take control of your electricity rates, consider signing up for a Constellation fixed-rate electricity plan. Our Power to Choose marketplace makes it easy to find competitive rates in your area, compare them apples-to-apples and decide what’s best for your home.
Reduce Your Lighting and Air Conditioning Usage
With a fixed-rate electric plan, your electricity rates stay the same per kilowatt hour throughout your contract term, regardless of what happens to energy market prices. This makes it easy to predict your energy costs and budget around them.
Regardless of your electricity rate type, there are several ways to reduce your lighting and air conditioning usage. Switch to ENERGY STAR light bulbs, seal and caulk your home, make sure you have the proper insulation in your walls and attic, use your washing machine and dryer on the shortest cycle and the ‘eco’ setting, and get into the habit of turning off electronics and appliances when not in use. It’s also important to unplug devices, especially those with a power strip, used intermittently, such as phone chargers and hair dryers. This will not only save you energy, but it will also help to keep your appliances from overheating.
Ultimately, the best type of electricity plan for you will depend on your energy habits and priorities. A variable rate may be a better option for those who want the flexibility to pay less in the winter and more in the summer, while a fixed-rate plan is ideal for those looking for stability in their monthly bills. With both plans offering benefits, it’s best to weigh the pros and cons to find the right fit for you.
Turn Off Unnecessary Devices
Whether you’re on a fixed-rate or variable-rate electricity plan, it’s important to avoid turning off any devices that aren’t being used. They can add up over time if they’re on a “standby” setting or only drawing a small amount of power. A simple home tour reveals many unused devices you can easily turn off to reduce energy costs.
If you’re on a fixed-rate electricity plan, familiarize yourself with the pricing structure. Many retail electric providers offer a variety of plans with different terms and rates. Some offer prepaid options that require you to purchase your energy supply in advance, while others include a base charge, flat TDU delivery fee, and usage credit as part of their pricing. Each component differs from the per kWh energy charge and will cause your average electricity rate to differ from month to month.