Electricity customers in Houston and the surrounding areas live in one of the most competitive electricity markets in the world. Thanks to Texas Senate Bill 7 electric choice in Texas began in 2002, and since then customers have seen more electricity purchasing options each year.
Many Houston energy customers are paying electric rates that are more than 100% higher than they need to be. Some of these customers never learned about Texas electricity deregulation and have remained on default service with their incumbent electric company. Since 2002, electricity prices in Texas have been on a roller coaster. Electric rates tripled in the summer of 2008, only to come back down by the summer of 2009. Since then rates have had smaller peaks and lows, but the prices have remained volatile. Energy consumers who have never shopped for electricity saw their rates rise dramatically when market rates rose in 2008. When energy prices came back down, the incumbent providers in Houston (Reliant, First Energy) did not have an incentive to lower these customer’s rates.
There are also Houston Energy customers who have done electric shopping at some point in the past, but haven’t taken the time to compare electric rates recently. These customers would have signed an electric contract for a set term, maybe 12 months. When those 12 months ended, the electric company would have put the customer on a variable month to month rate. These customers usually don’t notice that their contracts have expired and continue to pay their electric bills as normal. When electricity prices go down, the competitive electricity company has no reason to voluntarily lower the customers electric rate.
Houston energy customers who haven’t compared energy prices in awhile should take the time to do so; they will probably find significant electricity savings and lower their monthly electric bill. We have seen Houston energy customers who had not shopped for electricity in over a year cut their electric bills in half.
Here are some current competitive electricity rates for customers in Houston in the Centerpoint territory: