What to Ask When Selecting an Energy Provider

Retail energy choice gives towns, cities and other municipalities the chance to access innovative products and services, and potentially lower energy costs.

But with retail choice comes the responsibility to select the provider that will best meet your needs. When researching energy providers, be sure to ask these five questions:


5 Questions to Ask when Choosing a Retail Energy Provider



Question 1

How have you helped other local governments like mine manage energy costs?

Why ask? Your supplier should have a track record of servicing public-sector organizations of your size.

What should I listen for?

checkmark icon

 Challenges the provider helped the customer overcome 

checkmark icon Products and services used

checkmark icon Specific results

Read Rhode Island League of Cities & Towns' entire story.



Question 2

What kinds of tools do you have to help our municipality navigate energy markets and control costs?

Why ask? Your supplier should empower you with information to make smart energy decisions.

What should I listen for?

checkmark icon

 Market trends and forecast reports

checkmark icon Historical volume data

checkmark icon Benchmarking data 



5 questions to ask when choosing a retail energy provider

Question 3

What products and services do you offer to help our municipality lower demand for energy—and costs?

Why ask? A provider should be committed to helping you use less energy and cut costs.

What should I listen for?

checkmark icon

 Demand Response program

checkmark icon Energy efficiency solutions

checkmark icon Alternative energy products



Question 4

What kinds of products do you offer municipal customers that want to explore market-based pricing?

Why ask? Your provider should tailor their offerings to suit your level of risk tolerance.

What should I listen for?

checkmark icon Index priced and hybrid supply products

checkmark icon Strategic services to help execute purchasing



Question 5

How do you structure your pricing, and how would a monthly bill break down for a local government entity like ours?

Why ask? It's vital that you understand how you'll be charged for energy.

What should I look for?

checkmark icon Clear indications of costs that are charged separately (e.g., capacity, line losses)

checkmark icon Costs charged by contracted volume vs. consumption


With due diligence, your municipality can find an energy supplier offering the right product mix and the expertise to help you manage your energy bills while providing taxpayers with essential services.


To learn how Direct Energy Business can help local governments like you

Visit our Government page.

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