Summer is here. Since the wait is over, there is nothing left to do except kick back, enjoy the seasonally bright, sunny weather, and crank up the AC. That last step, though, although necessary, is going to cost you a lot of money.
Let’s face it: your summer energy bills are going to be higher than usual
The summertime is the time of year when you put the air conditioner is on full blast for every minute you are indoors out of fear that you will otherwise melt in your own Pennsylvania home. Unfortunately, running the air conditioner cost money—a lot of money compared to your other home appliances. In fact, it can account for anywhere between a third and half of your total energy bill.
This drives your energy bill way up due to usage alone—customers with variable electric rates in PA also have to worry about volatile summer energy rate fluctuations (we will discuss this later). While you can expect your energy costs to be higher than normal during the summer, you don’t necessarily have to pay a whole lot.
The state of the energy industry in PA varies, so you should start shopping around for new energy suppliers now
As a PA energy customer, you benefit from what is known as energy industry deregulation. In short, this means that instead of being beholden to a single electric supplier in PA that can do whatever they want to you (within the boundaries of the law), you have access to a competitive energy market where you can choose from dozens of PA electric suppliers, all of which are trying to beat out the competition for your business. Switching suppliers can not only save you money on your summer electricity bill, but your electric costs throughout the year.
There are many electric suppliers in PA—you just have to find the right one
As some people have already found out, simply switching PA electric suppliers does not guarantee that you will save. You need to find one that actually offers a package that will save you money. Here is how to do that:
Avoid variable rate plans
In a stable, reliable energy market, a variable rate plan is not a bad idea, because you gain the benefit of potentially saving if energy prices fall. However, the PA energy market is too volatile to sign up for a variable rate plan. Many people are finding this out the hard way, as increased energy demand wrought by the destructivec2013-2014 winter has caused some variable rate energy bills to multiply six times over.
Instead, only look at fixed rate plans. These plans allow you to lock in an energy rate, regardless of the state of the energy market in your area.
Be careful with introductory rates
Occasionally, a PA electric supplier will offer you a great fixed rate, only to hike it substantially a short time after you sign up. This is usually due to the offered rate being an introductory rate designed to attract your business
Be sure to determine whether or not you are being offered an introductory rate. If so, find out if the real rate will save you any money.
Use a comprehensive comparison tool
You don’t have to scour the internet to dig up all of the PA electric suppliers that service your area. All you need to do is use a free price comparison resource such as MakeTheSwitchUSA.com, which allows you to compare details about all of the energy suppliers that operate near you for free.
The summer is the perfect time to find a new natural gas supplier
In PA, the energy market is completely deregulated. This means that you can not only shop around for a new PA electric supplier, but also a new natural gas supplier. And the summertime is the best time to find a new natural gas supplier.
This is due to the fact that natural gas is mostly used for home heating. As such, it doesn’t get used much during the summer. Since natural gas is still being produced during the summer, its supply greatly outweighs the demand for it; as a result, the cost for natural gas goes way down. Locking in a new fixed rate natural gas supplier will save you a lot of money on your energy bill when the wintertime comes around.