Have you ever called your utility company to ask them about any savings programs or credits they have for you?
But why? Why would they want to save you money? Don’t they need to make more money to stay in business and beat their competition?
And, isn’t this even more urgent here in Texas where you have lots of companies fighting for your business?
Yes, they do.
Why Utility Companies Encourage You To Reduce Your Electricity Usage
Now, they don’t help you do this for selfless reasons. It’s not because reducing your energy usage helps the environment.
The thinking is that you have 3 ways to make more money as an electric company:
- Raise your prices, which would only cause customers to leave or consider other electric companies, and often is legally not possible
- Improve the efficiency of the grid, which is extremely costly and sometimes politically contentious
- Hit energy reduction targets set by regulators so you can boost rates
Legally, electric companies have regulation governing them that forces them to promote ways to save energy to you. When they do this successfully and meet a certain goal, they can raise their rates.
So, it’s not necessarily a wonderful, selfless act that they offer you savings. However, it does help you. And when they do encourage you to save money, regardless of the method or actions they promote, they are offering a legitimate opportunity to save money and energy. It’s not a scam.
Examples of what some electric companies have done include sending a consultant out to your home, giving you points you can exchange for prizes for reducing your energy use, and offering a cash prize for bringing your electric use down a certain percentage.
What If Your Electric Company Doesn’t Have any Such Programs?
You can always encourage your electric company to create these programs, reminding them that it will help them make more money. Of course, there’s no guarantee that they will act.
But if you ask about it enough, and get other friends and family you know to do the same, you just might convince your electric company to take action. And if you do, it’s a big win-win situation for you and your electric company.