Learn the Facts About Paying Your Electricity Bill

If you are interested in learning how to save on your energy bill, the best place to start is figuring out how to read your bill. You can actually see how much you save on an energy bill by comparing your kilowatt hour (kWh) usage listed on your monthly statements. Aside from learning how to save on an energy bill, you should educate yourself on the ins and outs of your energy expenses. As a Texas consumer, it's important that you know your energy rights, especially when it comes to your electric bill.

What information is required on your electric bill?

No matter which retail provider you choose, each should offer the same information on your electricity bill. Take a look at the items your Texas electric bill must show.

  • Amount due: This is the amount you owe and must pay to the retail provider. Remember, you can always save on your energy bill by cutting back on electricity use in your home or office.
  • Billing period: The time span between meter readings is considered your billing period. You are charged for the electricity you used between the start and end of the billing cycle.
  • Payments since your last bill:If you have made any additional payments since your last billing cycle, they should be listed on your electric bill.
  • Kilowatt hour total: Your retail provider should include how many kWh you used within a billing cycle. Much of the cost associated with your Texas electric bill is based on how many kWh you use during a billing cycle. The fewer kWh you use, the more you could save on your energy bill.
  • Toll-free number for billing questions: Call this number if you have an issue with your electric bill or have questions concerning charges.
  • Toll-free number for power outages:Call this number to contact your utility. Because it owns the network of power lines to transport energy to your home, the utility is responsible for maintenance. If you ever experience a disruption in your electricity, simply call the number reported on your electricity bill to notify the appropriate utility.

Who should you contact with questions about your electricity bill?

As mentioned above, if you have concerns about your electric bill, call the toll-free number it lists. When you call the number printed on your Texas electric bill, you will reach the customer service department of your retail electricity provider. These REP employees should be able to answer any questions or concerns you might have.

You should always examine your bill carefully. If you feel like you are being overcharged and should have a lower energy bill than you're receiving, you should contact your electric provider.

If you are having trouble making payments and need a lower energy bill, ask your retail provider if there are any steps you can take to reduce your energy expenses. They may be able to give you some tips to save on your energy bill or may even be able to put you on a deferred payment plan.

Many retailers allow you to pay a flat amount for your electricity bill each month. This is called budget billing. Under this plan type, you pay an average of your 12-month energy. For most people, the amount they owe on their Texas electric bill varies from month to month. With budget billing, you will likely have a lower energy bill than normal during the summer months. In the winter, when you typically pay for a lower energy bill, it will be slightly higher.

At the end of your contract, your REP will compare your actual energy use to the kWh you've been charged for. If you used more energy than you paid for you will have to make an additional payment. However, if you used less energy you should see a reimbursement to your account, allowing you to save on an energy bill in the future.

While this plan won't help you save on your energy bill it will make it easier to budget because you will know exactly how much you will pay each month. If you're interested in budget billing, contact your retail provider to see if it offers the service for your Texas electric bill.

Disclaimer: ChooseTexasPower.org is operated by Save On Energy LLC and is not affiliated with Power To Choose, powertochoose.org or the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT).