Why Did My Bill Increase?
Depending on your electricity plan and lifestyle, you may have become accustomed to paying a certain amount on your electricity bill each month. When you get a bill that is dramatically higher than what you've come to expect, it may lead to confusion. We've outlined some of the most common causes of a sudden increase in your electricity bill.
The weather changed
Weather changes tend to lead to changes in your electricity bill because the harder your heating and air conditioning system works to make your home comfortable, the more electricity you consume. Using a fireplace in colder months and setting your air conditioner on "auto" are great ways to conserve electricity while keeping your home at a comfortable temperature.
- Find seasonal tips and more in our Tips to Lower Your Electricity Bill section.
Your electricity plan expired
When you sign up for a term electricity plan with a fixed rate, you are under contract for a specified amount of time. If your contract ends and you have not signed up for a new plan, you can be defaulted to a variable-rate month-to-month plan, which can significantly increase your monthly electricity bill. Reliant customers are notified before their contracts expire and are given new plan offers to prevent this from happening.
- To see if your plan has expired, log in and view your plan.
- If your plan has expired, log in to view new offers available to you.
You may be on a variable-rate plan. These plans have pricing that can vary from month to month, which impacts total bill amounts. Additionally, if your fixed-rate term contract expired and another term plan was not chosen, your account automatically rolled to a month-to-month plan with a variable rate after the date of expiration. Log in to view your plan details. If your plan has expired, view available offers.
Minimum usage requirement was not met
When your plan has a minimum usage requirement and it is not met, you can be charged an increased rate for the electricity you have already used. For example, if you are on an electricity plan that guarantees you a specific rate provided that you use at least 1000 kWh of power, but you only use 700 kWh that month, you will be charged a different rate, resulting in a higher than expected electricity bill.
- If you have a minimum usage plan, log in to view your plan for details on your minimum usage requirement.
Changes in charges from the Transmission and Distribution Service Provider (TDSP)
Your electricity plan may include recurring delivery charges from the TDSP that are passed through without markup on the bill. These charges are for the cost of transmitting and distributing electricity to the service location. Delivery charges can increase or decrease with approval from the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT). TDSP charges usually change on March 1 and September 1 of each year but can change at other times with the PUCT’s approval.
Monitoring your electricity usage
One of the best ways to manage your monthly bill is to keep track of how much electricity you use. You can do that using our helpful tools and find plenty of strategies to help decrease your electricity usage on our energy-saving solutions pages.