Utility Pricing – Why Comparing Is Important


The fact is that gas and electricity suppliers are few and consumers many. Demand only keeps rising and with more and more new connections being set up, customers, business and individual, have to pay high prices to light and heat their homes. There is also a lot of speculation about which is cheaper – gas or electricity. There is no simple answer to such a question as it depends a lot on where the consumer is located and what is more easily available – gas or electricity. With a few more utility companies entering the marketplace and trying to harness green energy, it has become easier for consumers to compare energy price and get an idea of the market.

Natural Gas Plant
Natural Gas Plant

Tips to do comparisons:

Identifying the measurement units is important as they may vary from country to country for electricity and gas. Across the board, electricity is measured in kilowatt hours (kWh).

People can find out information on rates in their region by going online and providing basic information like supplier, zip code and information required. Rates charged per measurement in units are offered for different suppliers in the region which lets consumers choose the one they find affordable.

Another important task for consumers to do is to find out how much fuel appliances consume based on the fuel they use – gas or electricity. This information is given out by manufacturers in their usage instruction booklets as well as on cartons. Nowadays there are quite a few websites which offer information on their products, making it easy for customers to check it before they can decide which appliance to buy. Manufacturers are also working hard on making energy efficient appliances with available technology.

As far as gas company rates are concerned, consumers have to multiply it by the number of units needed by an appliance on an hourly basis. This is important as it will determine what kind of appliance to buy, based on cost. End users have to also consider whether they are buying environmentally friendly products and ensure that they do regular maintenance for optimal functioning.

Customers should also check out electricity usage rates for appliances as well. It is important to note that not all appliances are available with gas and electric configurations and some usage is restricted to just one mode.

Working at Energy Plant
Working at Energy Plant

Other tips to consider:

Consumers would do well to determine the number of hours per week they use particular appliances and calculate costs for gas and electricity separately to find weekly operation numbers. They should be able to figure out annual operating costs; this number will change constantly as production prices and supply prices will fluctuate based on seasons.

Another thing to keep in mind is that price differences will always exist between gas powered appliances and electric ones – installation costs and the cost of running appliances will also vary.

In most regions, people may have a choice of suppliers, which makes it easier to switch and so the compare energy price comes into picture; but for those who don’t, they have no choice but to go with what is available. Sometimes, suppliers are willing to work out payment plans.