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What changes after enrolling with an energy supplier?

May 23, 2017

Congratulations on making the decision to select an energy supplier!

Though your service won’t change with your utility, you have taken an important step in taking control of your monthly energy budget. No matter what supplier you’ve selected, your utility will still continue to service your lines and wires, and will continue to deliver your energy supply.

But wait…my bill looks different.

If you’re like most people, chances are, you’re not looking at your energy bills for anything other than to see what amount is due that month. If you’re set up for auto-pay, you may never look at it. But what happens when all of those sections you never paid attention to before start to look a little different? It’s likely you’ll think something has changed. And though the look of a bill will differ from utility to utility, choosing a supplier doesn’t actually add any charges.

Insider Tip: It takes 1-2 Billing Cycles for your supplier to actually show up on your utility bill. Why? Because the utility cannot interrupt your billing cycle to make the change. The changes are applied when your meter is read for the month and a new billing cycle begins. …So don’t be alarmed when it starts showing up!

So why might there be additional  line items listed on my utility bill?

If you’re seeing more line items listed on your utility bill than you did before you selected a supplier – this is totally normal! When you were receiving your generation supply from the utility all of the charges may have been listed as a bundled in in rate. But because you’ve chosen a supplier, the utility may make the decision to break down the charges so customers can see what they are paying to the utility and what they are paying to the supplier.

What do the different charges on my utility bill mean?

Once again, terminology will differ from utility to utility, but there are some generic terms you might be able to relate to whatever is actually on your bill. Here are a few:

Some other generic terms that you might see on your bill:

If you see the below on your bill, they are most likely from your utility. You should reach out to them with any questions you may have.

Transmission service: Costs associated with transporting the energy via lines from the generating plant to the local substations.

Generation service charge: Costs associated with the energy you actually use.

Customer charge: Fixed costs for any services including meters, meter reading, and customer billing.

Rider fees: Riders are temporary charges approved by the Public Utility Commission. These can be placed on the bill to regain past expenses the utility has endured (due to extreme weather events, extreme cost, etc.).

Learn more about choosing an energy supplier