Never just accept a bill from your utility company. You should always look carefully at what you’re being charged and have a full understanding of what it all means. Utility companies get away with all kinds of mistakes and over charging because their customers aren’t savvy when it comes to understanding the bill. More times than not, the company isn’t even intending to be malicious. It’s simply bureaucratic and inefficient, which is often the case for institutions that are regulated by civic authorities. However, with a simple review and scan of your bill, there are several areas that can save you money if you understand their importance. Here are three essential items to look for on your bill that make a difference in how much you pay.
Rate of Kilowatts
Understanding Your Bill Will Save You Money
The way that your electricity bill is calculated is a charge per kilowatt. This rate is something changes with the market rate of electricity
, and can go up and down dramatically. If you see a huge difference in your bill and you seem to be using the same amount of electricity from month to month, this is probably why. There are sometimes opportunities to buy into competitive rate of electricity in urban areas, but not always. You should be aware of how much you’re being charged for electricity, though, because there are ways to use substantially less kilowatts by unplugging appliances and using energy efficient light bulbs.
Comparing Different Months
Keep Track Of Your Monthly Expenses
If you feel like you’re paying too much on your utility bill, try comparing it to past months. Certain things should make logical sense that you can deduce for yourself. For example, if in the summer you’re running an air conditioner, then your electricity bill should drop in the colder months. If this isn’t happening, then you know that the utility company
probably made a mistake somewhere along the way. It’s possible that your meter is having an issue or that you’re on some sort of billing plan of which you weren’t aware, such as level billing. There are lots of little details you may not notice at first from month to month, but once you become aware, you may find inconsistencies that can save you money. First you need to identify them, though.
Estimated Versus Actual Billing
Estimated Expenses Are Not The Same As The Actual Billing
Estimated versus actual billing makes a big difference in how much you’re paying for your utility bill. Estimated billing means that the utility company claims they didn’t have access to your meter on the day that the reader came by, and they base it on past months. This is problematic if you’re going from one season into another, since you’ll be charged a summer electricity rate in a winter month. Although they’ll refund your overpayment as a credit, you’re still paying more out of pocket which not everyone is able to do. You should always look for the estimated charge on your bill
and call immediately to request a new meter reading. You should also act the customer service representative the date on which the reader tried to gain access to your meter. Many times, meter readers will barely linger for more than a second if they don’t receive an answer to the doorbell within a minute, because they’re inundated with a schedule to keep. Unfortunately, this is the reality of a utility company, but that doesn’t mean that you should have to overpay. Make a note of when the reader is supposed to come next, and make sure you’re home to avoid estimated, inaccurate bills.