Recommended Reliant Energy Plans
About Reliant Energy
In 1999, Houston Industries Inc, parent company of Houston Lighting & Power Co., reorganized itself into Reliant Energy Inc. When Texas deregulated its energy market, Reliant Energy again reorganized, separating out CenterPoint (distribution), Texas Genco (electricity generation), and Reliant Energy (energy retailer). In 2009, New Jersey-based NRG purchased Reliant Energy. Since then, the company has grown to be one of the largest electricity providers in Texas, serving over 1.5 million customers. It has gone on to win several prestigious business awards, including the 2019 Smart Energy Innovation award, the 2018 Better Business Bureau Education Foundation Pinnacle Award for ethics, excellence and quality in the workplace, and several customer experience awards.
In The Community
Reliant has long been engaged in Texas community initiatives, supporting charitable causes from the Gulf Coast to the Panhandle that have included Junior Achievement, Literacy, scouting, and scholarships to name just a few. Reliant has also stepped up in times of trouble to help with relief for hurricanes, power for cooling centers, and other sorely-needed programs to help Texans rebuild after a disaster.
Begun in 2016, the Reliant Gives Vote Program lets Reliant Energy employees to support nonprofit organizations they feel are making a difference in their communities. In 2018, Reliant employees volunteered over 8,000 hours, and donated $3 million to more than 150 community programs across Texas. This year, 2019, has seen donations to Lunches of Love, Shriner's Hospital for Children, and Bo's Place, a bereavement center that helps children and families cope with the death of a loved one.
Reliant Customer Assistance Service
Reliant is very sensitive to customers having financial difficulties or are facing a serious illness. Under certain circumstances, they allow extra time for customers to pay their bills, provided the customers discusses their situation with an agent in advance. Reliant also established their Community Assistance from Reliant Energy (CARE) program to provide payment assistance to qualified customers who have experienced an emergency or temporary hardship impacting their financial status. The program is funded in part by contributions from Reliant customers who can donate to it on their monthly bills.
Compare Reliant Energy Rates
Variable and Fixed Rates
Reliant's Energy prices depends mainly on whether the plan's rate is variable or fixed. Variable rate plans reflect the market rate for electricity. Because the market rate changes constantly, Reliant can change the rate for their energy charge for these plans at any time. They notify customers about changes in writing at least 14 days before any change will be applied to your bill or take effect.
Fixed rate plans, however, have fixed prices. Once you agree to a fixed rate plan, the contract keeps the price for your energy charge constant throughout the term of the contract.
How the Right Plan and Rate Saves You Money ??" Variable rate plans tend to be great conveniences for short term periods. For example, if you're moving or if you're between plans and you need extra time to shop for a fixed rate, then signing onto a month-to-month variable plan with a low introductory rate can save you money BUT only for that first month. Remember, you're only using the month-to-month plan to give you extra time to shop. You want to switch to a fixed rate electricity plan before the rate on your month-to-month plan jumps at the end of your first month.
Electricity prices change constantly. During periods of extreme weather, like winter and especially summer having a variable or fixed rate plan can either cost you or save you hundreds of dollars. That's because high energy demand causes the energy charge rate per kWh to rise ??"sometimes suddenly. Customers with variable rate plans could see Reliant's energy charges shoot up from 9 cents per kWh to 20 cents or more from one month to the next. Meanwhile, customers with fixed rate plans face no additional costs because the price for their Reliant Energy fixed rate plan was locked-in ahead of time.
Average Energy Charges
According to Reliant plan EFLs, energy charges for fixed rate plans tend to run approximately 8.5 cents to 9.5 cents per kWh. Most plans come with base charges that range roughly from $5 to $6 per month. However, some plans with no base charges usually have slighty higher energy than average charges. On the whole, Reliant's energy charge rates are straight forward, very competitive, and rely on fewer ‘fine print” gimicks when compared to their competitors.
That said, customers still need to be cautious. A few Reliant plans do allow usage tier pricing to have a big effect on the energy charge. For example, if usage is below 800 kWh per month the energy charge can be around 8 cents per kWh. If usage rises to more than 801 kWh per month, the energy charge might rise to 10 cents per kWh. Both weekends free and nights free plans also try to convince customers to find a balance in their usage. While they offer free electricity during nights and weekends, the plans energy charges are much 2 to 3 times higher than average during the daytime/weekday. As with all of these types of plans, it's up to the customer to control their usage in order to reap the savings.
As always, Customers need to read plan EFLs carefully and fully understand how a plan's pricing works before signing up for it.
How do I get the Cheapest Reliant Energy Rate?
There are four basic steps
- Understand your usage
- Know your credit rating
- Understand TDSP (Local Utility) Fees
- Understand The EFL (Electricity Facts Label)
Reliant Energy Rates for HoustonCompare Reliant Energy Energy to These Electricity Rates in Houston
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Reliant Energy Rates for Corpus Christi
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Reliant Energy Reviews
With over 1.5 million customers, Reliant is one of the biggest retail electricity sproviders in Texas. The Texas PUC Sorecard rates the company 4 of 5 circles. It recently reported a total of only 178 complaints about Reliant between March and August, 2019.
Reliant has maintained a high standard for many years, rating a 723 out of 800 in the J.D. Power 2016 Retail Electric Provider Residential Customer Satisfaction Study. This put them 7 points below the study's average Texas score but within the survey's “pleased customer” scoring range. Reliant also maintains an A+ rating on the BBB. Other reviews for Reliant Energy from Consumer Affairs and Yelp score the company low due to complaints involving customer service issues. However, Texas Electricity Ratings gives Reliant Energy 5 stars for their community outreach and plan innovation, and 4 stars for their complaint resolution efforts. Most TER customer reviews give high marks to billing and account management as well as order experience, plans and promotions, and price.
|Provider||2019 Texas Electricity Ratings||Consumer Affairs||Texas PUC Rating||Yelp||2016 JD Power Ratings||2019 Better Business Bureau|
|Reliant Energy||5 Stars||1 Star||4 of 5 circles*
*(Texas PUC reports a total of 178 complaints filed between March - August, 2019)
Texas Electricity Ratings
Overall Score for
4.3 / 5
Read Reliant Rating Details
Reliant Scores and Ratings
Reliant EFL and Plan Expiration
Electricity customers sometimes loose track about what happens when the contract with their provider ends. To be clear, Texas law states that Texas electricity customers shall be notified (by mail or electronically) at least 30 days or one billing cycle prior to the date of contract expiration, but no more than 60 days or two billing cycles in advance of contract expiration for a residential customer.
According to Reliant's terms of service, variable rate plans and fixed rate plans do not have the same rules about notifications.
Reliant notifies variable rate/month-to-month customers in writing at least 14 days before rate changes will be applied to their bill or take effect. Again, Reliant can change variable rate prices at any time.
However, Reliant notifies fixed rate customers at least 30 days before the end of the initial contract term as spelled out on the Reliant Energy EFL. This contract term notice tells customers that if they do not renew their contract or switch by the time the contract ends that they will be automatically switched to Reliant's month-to-month variable rate default plan.
For example, if your new 12 month plan begins on January 1, you should expect a contract term notice later that year on December 1. If you don't renew with Reliant or switch to a different plan or provider, you could see your next bill's rate jump by 2 or 3 times the amount you were originally paying. And because this rate is variable, your rate will change every month.
Value Added Plans
Plans for Renters
Reliant's Apartment 9 plan offers a fixed rate for 9 months. The energy charge for 0-1,000 kWh averages about 8.5 cents per kWh. Anything over 1,000 kWh comes in roughly at 10.5 cents per kWh. Including TDU charges, the average rate across Texas for this plan comes to about 13.8 cents per kWh for 1,000 kWh usage. The term length makes it well suited for students or other renters who don't expect to be staying in their residence for a full year.
Plans for Texas Sport FansReliant offers several energy plans to attract Texas sports fans. Reliant offers sports-themed 12 month fixed rate plans, each one with its own incentive to appeal to football, basketball, and rodeo fans.
- Signed Football Jersey or $100 Visa Incentive Plans ??"Customers in Dallas and Houston get a signed jersey an invitation to an autograph session with the Dallas Cowboys or Houston Texans. The $100 Visa plans offer prepaid Visa cards and invitation to an autograph session, too. Both plans are essentially identical. They offer a 12 month fixed rate with no usage charge per billing cycle if usage is equal to or over 800 kWh. However, if customer's usage falls below 800 kwh, it incurs an additional $9.95 charge per billing cycle. The plan sports an early termination fee of $150.
- Rockets Secure Advantage 12 plans ??"Houston customers can choose a plan that offers an authentically signed Clint Capela basketball and an invitation to an autograph session with the Houston Rockets. Or customers could chose the $100 Adidas gift card version of the plan which also includes invitation to an autograph session. Both plans are 12 month fixed rates with no usage charge per billing cycle when the usage is equal to or over 800 kWh. However, if the customer's usage falls below 800 kwh, there is an additional $9.95 charge per billing cycle. The early termination fee is $150.
- Reliant Rodeo plan ??"For those who like horsing around, there's even a plan offering discounts on rodeo wear. Like the other sports plans, this plan is a 12 month fixed rate with no usage charge per billing cycle if usage is equal to or over 800 kWh. Again, when a customer's usage falls below 800 kwh, it incurs an additional $9.95 charge per billing cycle. The early termination fee costs $150.
Google Nest PlansBy turning your home into a Google Nest Home, think of how you can stay informed, save time, save energy on your usage.
- Reliant Learn & Conserve ??"Both 24 month and 12 month plans are available. These offer a Google Nest Learning Thermostat or the Google Nest Thermostat E. Both smart thermostats can be controlled via your smartphone or tablet and can help reduce your energy usage by 15%. There is no base charge nor usage charges, just a straight energy charge and TDU charges. Early termination fees are high. The 12 month plan is $150, the 24 month plan is $295.
- Reliant Speak & Play 12 Plan is also a simple fixed rate. It that gives customers a Google Home smart speaker and voice assistant. Use it to surf the web, find out weather reports, play music, or even pay your Reliant bill. There is no base charge nor usage charges, just a straight energy charge and TDU charges. Early termination fee is $150.
- Reliant Truly Free Weekends 12 Plan offers customers a free Google Nest Hub. The Google Nest Hub lets customers use their voice to control lights, outlets, video cameras, even doorbells via. Meanwhile, the plan is a 12 month with a high fixed weekday rate. However, from 8:00 PM Friday to 12:00AM Monday, there is no energy charge or TDU charge. On average, customers can get 32% of their usage for free. Early termination fee is $150.
Security PlansAround 2015, Reliant moved into the home security ecosystem with plans and devices for Texas electricity customers. Reliant's security plans offer home security and comfort whether you're there or across town via the Reliant Connect app. You can lock doors, adjust lights, and receive notifications via email or text. Reliant's security plans are available only to Reliant Energy customers. There are three different packages, all with 24/7 professional monitoring:
The Essential package offers baseline home security; one motion detector, three door/window sensors and a control panel that operates and monitors the sensors. The control panel communicates by cellular signal and can be controlled remotely through an app on your phone.
The Basic Video package mostly adds video monitoring and record capability to the Essential package. You get the same motion detector, three door/window sensors, and app-compatible control panel, plus choose between an indoor video camera or a video doorbell.
The Video Plus package comes with the same basic equipment as the Essentials package and includes your choice of two additional options:
- Choice of two indoor cameras, or one indoor camera and WiFi doorbell camera, or one outdoor camera.
- Choice of two thermostats, or 1 garage opener, or two smart plugs, or one door lock, or one image sensor.
Since every home has somewhat different security requirements, Reliant wants customers to call for a quote. However, according to Reliant, the basic Essential package starts at $24.99/month. Compared to similar home security services such as ADT and Vivint, Reliant offers competitive pricing. Customers can buy additional sensors, cameras, smart locks, smart outlets, smart LED bulbs, and other additional devices for the price of the hardware Reliant installs. Meanwhile, all package contracts begin at 36 months (3 years).
AC Warranty PlansReliant electricity customers get a 10% discount when they sign up for one of Reliant's AC/Heating home maintenance plans. Services include better system efficiency with duct sealing, air filter delivery, tunes up, and smart thermostat installation as well as convenient inspections for leaks, worn parts, and poor performance.
Plans available include AC Services and Repair, Heating Services and Repair, AC/Heat Protection, Nest Thermostat, Indoor Air Quality, and Air Filter Delivery. Customers in Dallas and Houston with single family homes can also sign up for a Home Energy Check Up to learn about their home's energy efficiency.
AC, Heating, and Indoor Air Quality service requires customers set up an appointment for a $49 initial diagnoistic fee to come and assess your system before any repairs or maintenance can be made.
Reliant's AC/Heat Protection program covers your home's central cooling and heating systems (up to two complete systems) and ductwork. Reliant offers three levels of claim coverage ??" Basic costs $9.99/month, Premium is priced $19.99/month, and Elite which costs $29.99/month. Per claim limits run from $500/claim to $1500/claim. Each service call costs $60. Customers can avoid heating and air conditioning breakdowns by catching the small problems before they become big, expensive headaches.
Solar Plans and ProgramsReliant Energy has supported renewable energy for years. It's one of the few Texas electricity providers that buys energy from its customers. It also offers its customers ways to participate in carbon offsetting through its EcoShare Program and solar-charging battery power accessories from Goal Zero.
The Reliant Simple Solar Sell Back 12 plan gives you credit for the electricity your solar panels generate and return to the grid for the same price of the electricity you buy. As a fixed rate 12 month plan, the credit for your excess generation is applied automatically to your monthly Reliant bill. The plan is available only in the Oncor and Centerpoint TDU territories. Because potential customers would be acting as power producers, they must call Reliant to discuss their system capacity and enroll in the program.
The Reliant 100% Solar Plans are for customers who don't own solar panels but still want to support renewable energy. Reliant offers fixed rate solar powered electricity plans from 2 local solar farms in Houston and Dallas to a limited number of homes. Terms run from 12 months to as long as 60 months. Plans include a $12 monthly membership fee. An added perk is that customers can leave the plan at any time; there are no cancellation fees.
Reliant Energy Bill Pay
Reliant Energy makes bill payment fast, simple, and convenient. Customers can choose a variety of payment options. These include paying online by logging into their secure Reliant Energy account. Another online option is Reliant's Quick Pay portal on their website where all you need is your account number and zip code. Of course, there's also traditional bill paying methods that include payment by mail, overnight mail, phone, or even in person at a convenient location in your area.
To keep bill payment simpler, Reliant Energy customers can eliminate bill payment tasks altogether by setting up AutoPay so that their Texas electricity bills are paid automatically every month via their bank or credit card. Reliant Energy also offers customers handy account management tools such as their own app for iOS and Android devices. They can also sign up to receive weekly estimates of their bill so that they can expect how much their monthly bill will be.
Zip Codes with the Cheapest Reliant Energy Rates in Texas