My husband has been with First Choice Power for several years. We realize that with the expenses of everything increasing that our power bill would as well. Though when we receive our August bill, it was $440. That is a charge of .238 per kilowatt hour. Which is double the price that we paid last month and last year. I call the company and ask them why the increase? They tell me that since we are on a month to month basis the rates can increase by 35% every month if they wish to do so. They tell me that they sent us a letter 3 months back stating that rates would increase and that we should get "locked in on a fixed rate of .174 cents per kilowatt hour. "
Then I state "why does our bill say that the usage was an estimate of 1804 kilowatt hours", and she says that they sent out the bill before actually checking the meter. The meter was read and the kilowatt usage was in fact 1540. So I ask for the credit of $75.00 now because I cannot afford the bill received. She states that they cannot do that, that they will credit next months bill.
First of all I never received a letter stating the charges were going to double. Second of all I checked with my mother who lives 10 minutes away in Sanger and has Coserve electric and she says that her charge per kilowatt hour the same month was .12 cents, and upon research realized that if we switched to Stream Electric the month to month charge would be at the most .15 per kilowatt hour. This is the same electric, coming from the same wires to your home, just a different provider.
Upon trying to figure out if it would be more beneficial to switch or just get in at a fixed rate with First Choice, I asked the customer service dept to go over the rates charged for the past 12 months, and the rates that they were going to charge for the next few months. They said that they cannot even tell me what the rates will be in October, therefore pretty much validating the fact that this company can charge whatever they feel like charging. I think that they realize people are afraid of other utility companies charging a deposit.
We switched to Stream Energy today, locked in for 6 months at less than .15 cents a kilowatt hour. I can tell you right now that our credit is far from perfect, and they did not require a deposit. Hopefully they are a more honest and dependable provider. I would tell everyone who feels as if they have been taken advantage of by First Choice Power to research their options. Not every company is raping their customers like this. Please be educated.