The difference between utility companies and electricity providers - $100

Texas, USA


The Utility Company (TDSP): Think of them as the highway. They own and maintain the power lines, poles, and infrastructure that deliver electricity to your house. They're also responsible for reading your meter and handling power outages. You don't get to choose your utility company – it's assigned based on your location, similar to having just one main road through town. Examples of Texas utility companies include Oncor, CenterPoint Energy, and AEP Texas.

The Electricity Provider (REP): Now, picture the car on that highway. This is your electricity provider, often called a Retail Electric Provider (REP). Unlike the utility company, you have a choice here! REPs compete for your business by offering various electricity plans with different features. These plans can have:

Rates: Fixed rates offer predictable costs, while variable rates can fluctuate with market prices.
Contract lengths: Choose a plan with a term that suits your needs, like 6 months or 2 years.
Some Retail Electric Providers offer bonuses such as free nights and weekends. Others have plans that use solar or wind power.

Related Article: The Difference Between Utilities and Electricity Providers

EcoWatch Methodology on Energy Providers in Texas

EcoWatch understands that Texans care about the environment. Electricity providers prioritize strong "green plans" powered by solar or wind. The focus on sustainability is shown in their scoring system. Texans can choose a plan that fits their budget and environmental values.

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