Friday, February 13, 2009

R U being ripped off by your electric company?

I am! For the past couple of months, I've noticed a significant change in the amount that I'm being charged for electricity. First off, let me say, I live in a town house, around 1200 sq. f, not big at all. The house is all electric, which means that I only have one bill, but it also means that I have a heat pump. Having said that, for those of you who've lived in a house with a heat pump, you know that it blows cold air, and your home never really feels warm. I've taken steps to insulate my home by installing new energy efficient windows and sliding glass doors, and I keep my temp set at 71 or 72 degrees which is supposed to keep your house warm and at the same time keep your bill under control. Well, let me be the first to say, it does not keep the house warm, especially with a heat pump, nor does it keep your bill under control. I'm not home during the day, I'm at work and my son is in school, so how much energy are we really consuming?

If you live in the DMV area, I know you've seen the countless reports on the news about angry customers who received the highest bills they've ever received recently. I've heard my friends and family complain about the bills they've received, so I know I'm not the only one. It just angers me that the companies can't give a valid explanation as to why the bills have increased as much as they have. To name some of them, in this area you either have, Pepco, Smeco, BG&E, or Dominion Power. In a report in the Washington Post, customers are speaking out. One customer paid $650 for a month, up from $350 the month before. What in the world did he do for his bill to increase by that much for a month? The report also states that the rates per kilowatt hour dropped from almost $120 to $55, which makes me wonder, why are the prices for the consumer going up and not down. The only explanation that a rep could give is that it's been cold and people have been staying in more and turning the thermostat up, consuming more of their stuff. WTH type of explanation is that? From what I can tell, the cold has never stopped anybody from going out. If he had said, the fact that folks don't have money to go out and are staying in more, I would understand, but to say it's because of the cold? Please! They also claim the longer Holiday billing cycle. Yeah, OK. I think all of this is a bunch of BS.

Another thing that angers me is that we're being charged for something that most of us have no idea if we're being charged correctly. I for one, do not ever see a meter reader near my house. When do they come out? And if they do come out, how do we know they are reading the meter correctly? How do we know the company is charging what it should be charging us? My personal opinion is that they estimate what you would use during a certain month. For instance, they know that most people use more energy around the Holidays, with the lights and Christmas tress and all, so they estimate that your usage would increase. Therefore, your bill is always higher around that time whether you use more or not. I've written to my electric company twice, with no response or explanation. My next step is my Congressperson. I've read that this area does not regulate electricity markets, which means that they are allowed to charge what they want. It was supposed to help the prices based on the competition. We see that's not working.

If there is anybody out there who can help me to understand how I'm being charged it will be greatly appreciated. I'm all ears. For now, my only recourse is to continue to write my electric company, move on to writing my Congressperson, and write in this blog to vent my frustrations. O yeah, I guess I better add, pay my bill, regardless of the cost because if I don't, my son and I may end up frozen to death because I'm sure they will not hesitate to cut it off if the bill goes unpaid.

No tidbits this time. If you have some for me, I'm all ears.

Sweet T

1 comment:

Blacdiamon said...

HELL YEAH!!!!! The temp is set ot 73...I'm hoping the devil knock on the door and ask if i want to borrow some heat....BASTARDS!

On the real it's cold in my house

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