What To Consider When Choosing An Electric Company: Irving, TX
The search can seem daunting. Sifting through hundreds of potential electric companies and plans is a lot to take on.
There are key pieces of information to look for that will help you in your search.
In this guide, we’ll you what to look for in an electricity plan and how to choose the best plan for your household.
On this page:
Electricity Providers: Irving, TX — How Many Are There?
The number of retail electric providers in your area depends on your zip code. When you search for cheap electric companies in Irving TX, there could be anywhere from 10 to over 100 companies.
Sifting through these results is overwhelming.
The reason for the long list is that the deregulated electricity market in Texas allows consumers to pick which electric provider best suits their needs.
Here’s the problem.
How do you pick one? What matters most to your household, and how can you quickly evaluate energy plans in Irving?
Factors To Consider When Evaluating Irving Electricity Providers
The search has begun.
You’ve started sifting through the electric providers that serve Irving and the surrounding areas, but where should you start? There are so many options to look at.
Maybe you’ve started to make spreadsheets or pros and cons lists. Remember Venn Diagrams from grade school?
This may seem daunting. But don’t worry.
Our partner, Power Wizard, has a proprietary algorithm that allows you to find the best electricity plan for your needs. And it only takes 2 minutes to complete. Click here to find the best plan for you.
Here are some key factors to think about as you begin your search.
Factor #1: Your Usage
When you look at an electricity bill, you typically see kilowatt-hours (kWh) usage.
What does this mean?
A kilowatt-hour (kWh) is a way to measure how much electricity you are using. A kilowatt-hour is 1,000 watts used for 1 hour.
This means that a 100-watt lightbulb lit for 10 hours would use 1 kilowatt-hour. Or, a 60-watt lightbulb would use 60 watts of energy in 1 hour, or .6 kWh of energy for each hour it’s on.
Imagine calculating that for each lamp, appliance, and hairdryer in your home.
Here are some examples of what 1 kWh will do:
- Using a laptop all-day (20-50 watts)
- Around 3 hours watching a plasma TV (280 - 450 watts)
- Less than 1 hour using a dishwasher (1,000 - 1.500 watts)
Why does this matter?
Depending on some key factors, your electricity usage could look very different, and this is reflected in your monthly bill:
- Your lifestyle
- The appliances you use
- The size of your home
- The square footage that needs to be warm or cooled with AC
Each electricity plan needs to reflect your usage in order to best serve you.
Similar to many cities in Texas, in Irving, electricity companies vary in the packages they offer and which incentives they include for signing a contract.
Keep reading to learn about the different types of plans that are offered.
Factor #2: Plan Options
There are three major types of electricity plans.
Fixed Electricity Rates
Fixed-rate plans maintain consistent electricity rates no matter what happens in the market.
If prices are rising in your area, your rate will stay the same. If prices are falling, however, yours will not change with it. This can be unfortunate if you’re locked in a long-term contract.
These plans do have the benefit of stable budgeting. There will be no surprises.
Look for these plans when electricity prices are at their lowest in Irving, such as early-spring.
Variable Electricity Rates
Variable-rate plans shift with the market and can change month to month.
This is useful if you’re in transitional housing.
But if your budget doesn’t allow for the rise in prices during the peak months, then these plans may not be for you.
Indexed Electricity Rates
An indexed electricity plan means that your rate is tied to an underlying variable.
This is when it pays off to look at the fine print of each plan and find out what this means for you. These plans can be variable or fixed.
In addition to these basic plan options, the plan specifics can get complicated.
Some plans have free nights and weekends. Some plans will automatically increase your rate when you renew your contract.
This is often done without notifying you. Think about it this way:
You may be paying 9.7¢ per kilowatt-hour, but after you renew they’ll automatically sign you up for a plan that’s 11.7¢ per kilowatt-hour.
Factor #3: Rates
Because the electricity market is deregulated, providers have to offer varying incentives to gain your business.
Here are some key ways that rates differ from plan to plan:
- It’s a competitive market. The number of companies offering electricity plans in that area can alter the rate depending on how competitive the market is.
- Location matters. Different seasons come with different electricity needs. And some zip codes may have higher rates than others.
- Overhead for electricity suppliers. Different companies get their energy from different sources, and this can affect the cost.
- Minimum use charges. No matter how much energy you use, many companies will charge a minimum amount.
Something to keep in mind: Just because a company offers a lower rate, does not mean it’s the best plan for you. There are other factors to consider.
Advertised rates are only a piece of the puzzle. There could be hidden fees or misleading rates.
You might have come across a particularly low rate for a certain usage level. This can make you feel hopeful.
But there may be a hidden bill credit tacked on to your monthly charge. Be sure to always research the plan details.
Best Electric Company In Irving, TX
In short, there is no “best” electric company. The best electricity plan for you and your home might look completely different from your neighbor’s home.
Here are some key things to think about as you’re shopping around:
- Are you a gamer?
- Do you need the AC on all day or just in the afternoon?
- Do you have one AC unit or multiple?
- Do you enjoy soft light in the evening or a fully lit home?
- Do you have multiple people needing hot water for their shower or just one?
- Do you like your home to be a warm 75° in the winter?
- Do you need to charge 3 laptops and 4 cell phones at once?
Size of your home.
- A 500 sq ft home is going to need far less energy than a 2,500 sq ft home.
Type of appliances. Some appliances, especially newer ones, are more capable of energy conservation. Appliances like:
- Washing machines; and
- Smart thermostats…
… have evolved in the last decade. What kind of appliances does your home have?
How to Choose An Electric Company: Irving, TX
You have two main options to find what works best for you. There are formulas to calculate the energy usage of your home, but no easy formula to find out the best plan to fit your needs.
You can compare the different providers manually.
This can involve creating a personal document of pros, cons, needs analysis, and priorities. If you’re savvy at Excel, this could work. It will take some time if you’ve got the skill.
Or, you can let an algorithm look at your needs and compare plans.
Our partner, Power Wizard, can do this work for you. The process only takes about 2 minutes to complete. They’ll search through hundreds of retail electric companies (REPs) so you don’t have to. Click here to find the best plan for you.
How To Change Electric Providers In Texas: Irving
If you are currently in a plan you’re not happy with, there may be some hurdles to jump before you can switch companies. There may be cancellation fees or other penalties.
We have created a guide to make switching companies easier.