Electric Service is something that most people don’t ponder until the moment an outage happens and they are in the dark and it’s getting hot. Outages are rare and tolerable so long as they don’t last more than a few minutes. The majority of Texas residents and businesses have switched away from the regulated incumbent electricity providers to new competitive electricity providers offering lower rates. There still are those who are apprehensive of receiving lower service standards should an outage occur if they are not with the old monopoly. Others are fearful that there will be a dark period between the old provider and the new. Luckily, the Public Utility Commission is run by competent people who manage this switching process seamlessly and efficiently. They get thousand of repetitions in each day throughout the state with consumers exercising their freedom of choice and switching to providers with more attractive rates.
Electricity Prices and Rates was designed to simplify the hassles of deregulation and part of that aim is providing customers with a basic understanding of the ins and outs of deregulation. As previously mentioned, a surprising number of Texans have the strong notion that switching away from their old and familiar electricity provider will result in their lights being the last ones to be turned back on in the event of an outage. To shake that notion, customers need to gain a better understanding of deregulation. Deregulation severed the connections between the electricity generators, the Transmission and Distribution Service Providers, and Retail Electricity Providers. At the present, if there is an outage in your area, odds are it has affected many homes and businesses and the fix isn’t done meter by meter. As a part of the separation of companies brought about by deregulation, the Transmission and Distribution Service Providers (Oncor, Centerpoint, AEP, TNMP) have no knowledge of which meters are being served by which electricity providers. The Public Utility Commission acts as a firewall between Electricity Providers and TDSP’s so there is no shared knowledge regarding customers’ electric service providers.
On a more trivial note, the largest incumbent providers in the state have all gone through significant changes in leadership and ownership since the outset of deregulation. TXU was recently purchased by the private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Reliant was purchased by NRG, a New Jersey company, in the aftermath of hurricane Ike. Direct Energy, a Centrica PLC company, purchased the nearly century old utilities, CP&L and WTU shortly after Texas deregulated. To truly achieve the goal of deregulation these separations are necessary to create a competitive market that will best serve Texas electricity consumers.
Electricity Prices and Rates understands the need for continuous and reliable electricity service which is why we can confidently say that switching providers will not affect your electric service. What customers can expect to see changed is the amount they pay for electricity. Please feel free to call us, e-mail us, or submit a pricing request.