Connecticut is Warning you about Risky Variable Electric Rates

  • Added:
    Jul 21, 2014
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    940
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Connecticut is Warning you about Risky Variable Electric Rates Photo by Michelle Erca

Many Connecticut energy customers have been paying more than double what they expected to for their energy. This has little to do with their energy consumption and a lot to do with the confusingly deceptive variable rates offered by many electric suppliers in CT. The state is well aware of this, and they have been warning people against signing up for these extremely risky rates for months now. In a press release earlier this year, they estimated that the average residential customer can wind up paying about $1,200 per year extra on their energy bill with variable rates.

From the perspective of the rates themselves, the standard electric rates in CT hover around 9 cents per kWh; some customers with variable rates are being charged as much as 24.9 cents per kWh. There are currently ten electric suppliers that were recently found to be charging their customers in excess of 17 cents per kWh; they are as follows:
• Perigee Energy
• HOP Energy
• Palmco Power
• Xoom Energy
• Blue Pilot Energy
• Public Power
• Choice Energy
• NextEra Energy
• Starion Energy
• Discount Power


Anyone who currently uses one of these electrical suppliers should immediately have their energy bill analyzed; if you are currently thinking about switching, do not sign up for variable rates with these—or any energy suppliers in CT.

Although variable rates are often advertised as a way to take advantage of declines in the energy market, Connecticut is not a state where going with a variable energy rate is a good idea. Seasonal spikes in electric rates for CT customers are partially to blame for the rate hikes, but a number of other factors in the CT energy market are forcing variable rates up outside of the extreme heat of summer and the frigidness of winter when the heating and cooling system drives energy bills up. The most problematic of these factors is the deceptive marketing tactics conducted by several electric suppliers in CT who offer deceptively low “introductory rates” and then quickly increase the rate to excessive levels (sometimes during the first billing cycle).

In order to mitigate the problems caused by variable electric rates, the Connecticut state legislature put in place a new set of laws aimed directly at the electric suppliers that practice deceptive marketing tactics like the ones discussed above. Some of the changes include the inability to raise rates fir three full billing cycles after the initial signup and more detailed yet easily understood billing format requirements.

Even with the new laws, the best solution for optimal energy rates in CT is going with a fixed rate instead of a variable one. When you choose to go with a fixed rate, your energy rate is locked in, so even as energy rates in CT continue to skyrocket, yours will remain the same.

When it is time to switch to an electric supplier that offers fixed rates you should take the following steps:

Find the energy companies with the lowest rates

This is the most obvious step, but it can also be the most difficult one. Fortunately, there are powerful resources that allow you to quickly find the best fixed electric rates in CT—and the energy suppliers attached to them. The most useful of the aforementioned resources is CTEnergySavings.com. At this site you can quickly compare and contrast the rates—among other offerings—of multiple energy suppliers against those of your current company.

Prepare a list of questions

Once you have taken the above step to create a shortlist, it is time to start interviewing energy companies with a list of helpful questions. They should include the following:
• Is there a credit check?
• Do you charge late fees?
• Is there an early termination fee?
• What other services do you offer?
• Do you require a security deposit?
• Are there any enrollment fees?
• Is the rate fixed?
• Do you offer any incentives for me to switch?

After you have received satisfactory answers and chosen an energy company, it is time to sign up. Before you do, though, be sure to read the contract first to verify that you are getting what you expect.

Author's Profile

Author is always looking to discuss about the electricity suppliers CT and energy bills to save money. Currently he is sharing information about the electric rates in CT area.


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