Texas Coalition for Affordable Prices sheds light on shady pricing schemes in electric market

The complex nature of the electricity market in Texas could be costing consumers more than they know, according to the Houston Chronicle. Unfortunately, this may have been going on for years.

Over the last 20 years, residents who live in the more competitive power markets in Texas have been paying higher prices for electricity year after year, compared to those who purchase electricity from regulated municipal utilities, based on the Texas Coalition for Affordable Prices. That organization purchases power in the deregulated areas. 

The Chronicle reports that the Texans who pay the higher prices account for roughly 85 percent of the state.

Texas locals who select their electric providers dish out 9 percent more when matched against the residents who live in regulated markets of cities like Austin and San Antonio, the coalition reported. When it comes to those who live in metropolitan cities like Houston, those citizens have been dishing out almost $400 more a year, for 15 years.

While Texas regulators began the Power to Choose initiative that promoted transparency and let residents select and compare plans, that selection process soon became quite confusing due to layers of complex pricing strategies consumers were forced to wade through. As some companies went as far as plugging “free nights and weekends” plans, even those who selected that plan had to learn the hard way that they were getting charged more for weekday rates. 

One company promised residents that $600 would be credited to their bill for signing up for a two-year plan, but that plan had a price tag of nearly twice as much as another plan offered by the company.

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