Utilities lock in rate or not?

It's that time of year when I consider locking into electric and natural gas rates. I pick this time because usually the gas rates are the lowest for the year, not always, but most times for my region. I've been locking in for decades and sometimes it's been a huge win, but other times (like moving and termination of contract fees) it's a huge loss. One big difference in this year is we now have a high efficiency gas furnace, heavily insulated house, and efficient lights, washing machines, etc. All that to say, my utilities already run on the low end for all our neighbors (our utility companies send a chart if you ask), so the saving would be minimal since usage is already very low. I'm wondering, is it worth the risk of locking in if the savings are minimal? 

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  • Hi Khaki Storm !

    This is very interesting! Our provider hasn't given us the option to lock in a rate. They do allow us to lock in a monthly payment, based on our average usage (so if our bill is $25 six months a year and $75 the other six months, they'll let us pay $50 year round) but not a specific rate. Do you call in to request the lock or is it a service your provider advertises for? 

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  • We have to go with a 3rd party company to lock in and in general it doesn't seem to have been worth it. 

    In your case, are you planning on moving? if there is no risk of cancellation fees and you save money, I say do it. But if the savings are so minimal, it may not be worth all the paperwork (ala Your Money or Your Life thought process).

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      • Khaki Storm
      • YNAB book topics online: https://support.youneedabudget.com/r/q5w48j
      • Khaki_Storm.1
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      MXMOM or if state legislators are thinking of changing something, I might have to look into that. 

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    • Khaki Storm
    • YNAB book topics online: https://support.youneedabudget.com/r/q5w48j
    • Khaki_Storm.1
    • 2 yrs ago
    • Reported - view

    It's all through 3rd parties the way our utilities are deregulated. The state has a comparison website to compare rates. This post is for rates, not the level or budget billing options. 

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    • Khaki Storm
    • YNAB book topics online: https://support.youneedabudget.com/r/q5w48j
    • Khaki_Storm.1
    • 2 yrs ago
    • Reported - view

    On the rate, and sticking with BBB rated companies in the A range, I'd save less than $5 a month to lock in now and possibly face a $50 cancelation fee. The highest savings of all offers was $16 a month; however, that company has 46 BBB complaints with poor resolution. Most people are complaining that other fees get crammed in the bill. 

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