PUCO offers energy choice tips

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) encourages Ohio’s utility consumers to be informed when considering energy options.

The power for Ohioans to choose their energy supplier has been around for more than a decade. As a choice-eligible customer of an electric or natural gas investor-owned utility, you have the opportunity to choose the energy option that is best for your home or business. Approximately 2.6 million electric customers and 1.8 million natural gas customers in Ohio are participating in energy choice.

In recognition of National Consumer Protection Week, March 6–12, 2016, the PUCO would like to remind consumers of a few tips to ensure that you make an educated decision for your energy needs.

Take your time. Review your current utility bill to determine your energy usage and your price to compare. Consider contract details, such as length of contract, cancellation policies and any associated fees, before making any decision to enroll with an energy supplier. Look for terms like fixed vs. variable rate.

Protect your personal information. In order to sign up with an electric or natural gas supplier, you will have to provide your account information. The PUCO encourages you to wait until you are ready to sign up with an alternative supplier before providing this information.

Confirm the identity of marketers. As with anyone who knocks at your door or contacts you by phone, make sure energy marketers confirm their identity and the company they represent. The PUCO certifies energy marketers and they are required to follow PUCO rules and regulations.

Visit the PUCO’s Energy Choice Ohio website. The PUCO provides a one-stop-resource for information about choosing an electric or natural gas supplier. Utilize the tools available at www.energychoice.ohio.gov to compare available offers on the Apples to Apples comparison charts, look for questions to ask suppliers and read facts about energy choice in Ohio.

Be confident in your decision. Whether or not you decide to shop, being informed in your decision will help you feel confident. By being aware of the terms and conditions of the agreement you may choose, you can continue as an informed energy consumer.

For help with utility-related matters, call the PUCO Call Center at (800) 686-PUCO (7826) or visit www.PUCO.ohio.gov.

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