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How to Shop for Electricity

Electricity choice means people can shop around to pick the right plan, rate and provider to supply electricity to their home. Direct Energy is proud to offer tips and tools to consumers so they can find the right electricity plan for them.

Select your state below to learn more about how to shop for electricity in your area.

sign up for electricity

Areas We Serve

Find the Perfect Plan for Your Lifestyle!

Click your state to get more tips on how you can shop for electricity in your area and find the best plan for you. Explore common billing terms, how to read plan documents, how to sign up and more.

If you do not see your state, please contact your local utility.

What Would You Like To Learn About Today?

How do I Sign Up for Electricity?

You can sign up for electricity in just a few steps:


Create an account with your utility

If you haven't already, you'll need to create an account with your local utility. Unless you're moving, you should already have an account.


On contract with your current provider?

Check whether you are under contract with your current provider. If you are, make sure you won't be charged an early termination fee if you switch providers before your contract ends.


Have your utility bill on hand

Have a recent utility bill on hand, as you'll need your utility account information to enroll with a competitive provider. If you're moving and haven't received a bill yet, you can contact your utility for this information.


Shop for your perfect plan

Shop for the electricity plan that fits your needs. After you sign up, your new provider will contact your local utility to complete the process.

How Do I Shop for an Electricity Plan?

Things to consider when shopping for your perfect electricity plan:


Electricity rates will usually be listed as cost per-kilowatt-hour (kWh), the unit used to measure electricity consumption.

Total Costs

Your total costs could include your electricity charges (rate multiplied by usage) and operational fees associated with providing electricity to your home.

Plan Benefits

What benefits do your options provide? How does a particular electricity plan add value to your lifestyle?

Find A Plan You'll Love

We have a variety of electricity plans to help meet the needs of your home and family. Our fixed-rate plans allow you to lock in an electricity rate for a term length of your choosing and get protection from market price fluctuations.

Glossary of Terms

Here are a few terms you'll see when shopping for an electricity plan:

Electricity Deregulation

In deregulated areas, customers are no longer required to sign up with their utility for electricity. Instead, they can shop offerings from available competitive electricity providers to find the best one for their household.

Electricity Deregulation


Your local utility is responsible for transmitting, connecting and disconnecting electricity to your home, and for reading and maintaining your home's electric meter. The utility also maintains the power lines and other equipment used to transmit electricity. In some deregulated areas, your utility may compete on the electricity market, selling its own electric plans to customers.


Competitive Provider

Retail or competitive providers vie to provide electricity to customers. In areas with deregulated electricity, customers can shop and compare electricity plans from various retail providers, like Direct Energy.

Electricity Provider

Kilowatt-Hour (kWh)

A kilowatt-hour is the unit used to measure electricity usage. It represents the consumption of one kilowatt, or 1,000 watts, for one hour.


Electricity Rate per kWh

The rate per kWh is the price you pay for each kWh you use. This price is set by your electricity provider.

Electricity Rate per kWh

Term Length

The term length is the duration, usually in months, of your contract for an electricity plan.

Term Length

Electricity Meter

Your electric meter is used to measure how much electricity you have used each billing cycle. Your local utility reads and maintains your electric meter. If you've chosen a retail or competitive provider to supply your home, the utility sends this information to your provider so you can be billed accurately for your usage.

Electricity Meter

Fixed-Rate Plan

With a fixed-rate plan, you'll be able to lock in an energy rate per kWh for a term length of your choosing. Fixed-rate plans protect you from market price fluctuations, but you will typically need to sign a contract and your rate may be higher than the market rate during seasons with low energy demand.

Fixed-Rate Plans
You can be fluent in the language of energy with our energy glossary.

What Electricity Plans Does Direct Energy Offer?

We offer a range of electricity plans. Find the perfect one that fits your lifestyle.

Fixed-rate plans

Fixed-rate plans give you protection from changes in energy market prices for the full length of your contract. Prices may go up, but your rate will stay the same.

Variable-rate plans

With a variable-rate plan, you may be able to take advantage of seasonal drops in energy prices. The price you pay will change with the market price.

Smart home offers

We offer electricity plans bundled with smart home devices like the Amazon Echo Dot so you can enjoy convenience and peace of mind in your home. Use our Alexa skill to manage your account and track your electricity usage.

Free electricity plans

Time-of-use plans offer free electricity at certain times of the day or week. We offer plans with free nights and free weekends so you can save money when you're home and using the most electricity.

Have a question about a plan or need help placing an order?

Call us: 1-855-461-1926

Hours: 7:00am-7:00pm CT Monday-Friday, 7:00am-4:00pm Saturday

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