Many low-income Texans are eligible for discounts on their electric bills. If you are an electric customer and can choose your retail electric provider, there is a low-income discount program called LITE-UP Texas that can assist you. LITE-UP Texas offers discounts on summer electric bills (May through August 2010) for qualifying electric customers. For more information, read the PUC's fact sheet on low-income assistance for electric customers or visit our LITE-UP Texas website for an application.
Low-income Texans served by investor-owned utilities, electric coops and city-owned utilities should ask their electric provider if they have low-income assistance programs.
Working With Your Retail Electric Provider
Your Retail Electric Provider has other programs to assist you in paying your electric bill. It is important to remember that your Retail Electric Provider will work with you on an individual basis to help you keep your lights on.
- Average Payment Plan: All customers who are not currently delinquent in paying their electric bill may take advantage of average payment plans that bill you a similar amount every month. Your monthly bill will be based on previous or estimated usage and your rate may be adjusted periodically depending on your Retail Electric Provider. If you switch providers while on an average payment plan, you will have to pay any balance due if actual usage exceeded the estimated usage.
- Payment Assistance Funds: Your Retail Electric Provider may have payment assistance funds available to assist you in times of need. If you know that you cannot pay your electric bill, contact your Retail Electric Provider.
- Bill Deadline Extension: Your Retail Electric Provider may offer a bill deadline extension that will allow you to pay your bill later than the due date.
- Deferred Payment Plan: Your Retail Electric Provider may offer a deferred payment plan that will stretch out payments over a period of time, making it easier to pay your bill.
It is important to have good credit when choosing your Retail Electric Provider. The Retail Electric Provider that you choose can investigate your electric bill payment history before accepting you as a customer.
A Retail Electric Provider can report bad debt/payment history to authorized credit reporting agencies.
Energy Efficiency Programs
Programs are available to help you save money on your electricity bill by making your home more energy efficient. For more information, call the Texas Department of Housing & Community Affairs toll-free at 1-888-606-8889. Based on where you are calling from, you will be directed to the nearest agency that offers assistance.
Information regarding additional energy payment assistance is available at 1-877-399-8939.