You Have Questions. We Have Answers.

We’ve answered some of the most common questions we’ve received from customers, whether it’s about how WattDawg works or about Texas’ deregulated electricity market itself.

To begin with WattDawg, visit the Sign Up! page.

According to an online article from the Houston Chronicle, consumer advocates say there are 325 plans in the Houston metro area alone, and the state’s website that is designed to help consumers make the best choice is far too complex and complicated. (2015, April, Houston Chronicle, “Some Say Electricity Website has Power to Confuse, retrieved October 17, 2017).

We’re here to help you negotiate the best price per kilowatt-hour available because, to date, we aren’t aware of any utility provider who is advertising a rate that includes what it costs them, and the actual price expected to pay. Currently, the rate you’re charged is based on leverage and negotiation skills.

If you decide to go it alone, here’s a tip compliments of the Houston Chronical.

“There’s often more to a plan than the average price displayed. So, the best way to choose is to narrow your options to four or five plans that could be a good fit, then start looking through the fine print to decide which is best. The details contained in a pair of documents known as the Electricity Facts Label and the Terms of Service can often mask the actual costs of a plan.”

Some companies bank on negotiating with the creation of chaos instead of the best rate. For only $10 a month or $120 a year, WattDawg can take this burden off your shoulders by being your top advocate for the best service and electric rate.

When you sign up with WattDawg, you will receive our full services, which includes negotiation of electricity rates, daily rate monitoring and timely contract renewal.

You can switch plans anytime you want, though most fixed-rate plans charge customers an early termination fee if you switch providers before your contract expires. You can find out when your contract ends by contacting your electricity provider or checking your account details online. You’re also supposed to receive a letter in the mail at least 30 days before your contract expires. It sometimes pays to break your contract early if the rate you are paying is above the current rates being offered. It’s our job to figure that out for you

When you change providers, you’ll be able to indicate the date you want the switch to occur. Customers can switch providers without facing an early termination fee if they schedule the switch no earlier than 14 days before their current plan expires, according to the Public Utility Commission.

Most variable-rate plans are month to month and don’t charge early termination fees, so customers on those plans can switch at any time. Check your plan for details.

If you did nothing when your last plan expired, you’re on a plan your provider picked for you – and chances are you’re not getting the best deal available.

No, a contract is not required to do business with WattDawg. Our goal is not to force you to stay with us and keep paying us money, but rather to cultivate a successful business relationship that lasts for many years.

A lot of online websites that offer a variety of electric providers’ rates are complex. The terminology on these websites can be difficult for consumers to understand the electric rate price ranges and what is included when agreeing to a charge rate, as well as confusion about the termination fees and timelines of the contract.

Another reason consumers avoid these electrical rate comparison websites is because it takes a generous amount of time to research, read and find the best deal. There are hundreds of utility companies offering thousands of offers for customers to sift through, decipher and understand, not counting the time it takes to negotiate a deal.

For most people, saving time and avoiding the contract chaos is well worth the investment of $10 a month or $120 a year. When considering the time and money we save you in negotiating the best per hour kilowatt rate, your return on investment is usually far above our subscription rate.

We also monitor your rate daily compared to the current rates being offered. Should the difference become big enough, we will switch your contract.

Several months before the expiration of your contract we start negotiating your new contract. We avoid the costly mistake of letting your contract expire, which, in most cases, puts you on a very costly flex rate. One month on a flex rate can cost you hundreds of dollars or more.

As far as companies that claim they are not charging you a rate, they are paid by the utility providers when the company of choice negotiates your electric rate. Their fee is built into your electrical rate charge offered by the provider.

A variable-rate plan means the cost of your plan can change every month. If they offer low introductory rates to entice you into a contract, that low price offer can, and probably will, change. A variable-rate plan means you must constantly monitor your electrical rate to avoid what is called ‘sticker shock’ later.

A fixed-rate plan is a price that doesn’t change over a designated time period, but please be aware that there may be separate fees and terms in the fine print that are included.

Your family’s household electrical needs are different from your neighbors’ or friends’. There are a variety of diverse options available. With so many choices, it makes it difficult for consumers to analyze the details of contrasting fees and terms when shopping for plans, but that’s where WattDawg comes to the rescue.

When you decide to hire us as your consultant, we’ll first review the fine points of your current contract to determine if your provider will charge you a termination fee for early withdrawal. We begin the process by running the numbers against your termination fee to discover if it’s a financial advantage for you to switch electrical providers. At that time, if you decide it is more advantageous to stay in your current situation, you can cancel your subscription fee, no questions asked. It’s that simple.

We are here for you and want what’s best for you. If we decide to continue doing business together, we’ll move forward with comparing rates offered by hundreds of providers against your record of power usage. Using our in-depth analysis, we will run hundreds of options and scenarios to find you the optimum electrical rate. Then we’ll use our company leverage and negotiation skills to persuade the energy providers that it’s in their best interest to offer our clients a superior rate.

The provider’s customer service record is the top priority and the most crucial factor, not their self-advertised retail name. There are some clients with misguided understandings that believe if they choose a company with a familiar name, that choice equals more reliable service when considering power restoration. They also think it will mean less electrical outages. Unfortunately, that isn’t the case. Regardless of provider, your electricity is delivered through the transmission and distribution company’s (Oncor/CenterPoint/TNMP/AEP) power lines. When there’s an outage, the transmission and distribution company is tasked with restoring it, not the retail provider.

By no means are they normal. Some retail electric providers’ plans charge fees for consumers who don’t use a certain amount of electricity. Others offer discounts to customers whose usage exceeds a certain level. The net effect is the same: Customers with energy usage below a certain threshold – often 800 to 1,000 kilowatt-hours per month – can wind up paying for electricity they didn’t use. You can see if the plan you’re considering has a minimum usage fee in its Electricity Facts Label or Terms of Service.

Minimum usage fees can nullify the savings customers might expect when they conserve power. Customers in smaller homes, including apartments, should pay particular attention to these fees. Check your old bills to see how much power you consume throughout the year to get a sense of how often you’ll likely have to pay the fee.

There’s almost no limit to the types of fees electricity providers try to levy on their customers. Some companies charge you anytime you make a payment. A few assess fees for speaking to customer service agents by phone. Some charge for a paper copy of the bill, and some companies even charge customers for their own credit check.

To avoid signing up for a plan with unreasonable fees, be sure to read the Electricity Facts Label and the Terms of Service. It’s a lot to take in, but failure to do so could cost a lot in the long run. To remove the hassle and worry of reading all that fine print and legal mumbo jumbo, sign up for WattDawg!

It’s become popular for electric providers to offer freebies like high-tech thermostats, restaurant gift cards or sports team apparel for customers who enroll in particular plans. Generally speaking, it’s not a good idea to pick a plan based on giveaway items. It can be pretty gimmicky. Keep in mind, your electricity bill may be the single biggest bill you have, outside of rent or car payment. When you pay $1,000 or more over the course of a year, you have to ask: “Is it really worth it?”

The same goes for plans that offer free nights and weekends. Those plans may have significantly higher rates the rest of the week. They may make sense for someone who owns a vacation home, but not for too many other people.

Absolutely! Websites, like Power to Choose, only list some of the available plans, typically those designed to lure new customers. However, some electricity providers may be willing to go even lower on price to get a new customer or avoid losing an existing one. It’s WattDawg’s job to investigate this and all options in order to get you the best rate.

The electricity provider requires your Driver’s License and Social Security Number in order to sign up. Rest assured that all your personal information is diligently guarded and will only ever be shared with the provider you sign up with – no one else!