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The following is an archived video story. The text content of that video story is available below for reference. The original video has been deleted and is no longer available.

Choosing Right Energy Supplier Could Save You Hundreds Annually

DAYTON -- David Crowell gets letters asking to leave Dayton Power & Light and sign a contract with a third-party supplier.

"It seems like we've been getting a lot more lately, especially in the last couple months," he said. "It says to lock in a low rate for 2014 saving us 35% on the electric. I don't quite trust that it's going to be that much of a savings in the long run. I've heard about contract termination fees and things like that and I'm used to paying what I paid so I had a hard time believing it."

"Without a doubt the worst thing you can do is stay with your defaulted utility company. Their rates are the highest so then the question comes: which one should you choose," said Duke Energy Retail Manager Kim Vogelgesang.

Because of less overhead cost, some companies can save you up to $350 a year or 35% of your bill. You'll just have to sign a contracts anywhere from a couple months to a couple years. If you cancel you'll have to pay a fee between $1-$300 since that company is prepaying for your energy under terms of the contract.

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio offers an "apples-to-apples" comparison of energy providers. Visit that website here: http://www.puco.ohio.gov/puco/index.cfm/apples-to-apples/

You can also check Duke Energy's website http://switchonohio.com/.

"It takes less than three minutes to sign up, grab a copy of your bill, go to the website, it'll ask you a couple of questions and that's it. Your power doesn't get interrupted, all you see you savings on your next bill,"
Vogelgesang said.

Ohio is one of very few states which has deregulation in energy bills, meaning you can choose who supplies your electricity. Still, only one in three people choose to change from their current supplier.

Ohioans often say they don't know they have a choice in suppliers or how to compare and choose the best option. According to PUCO, there are
four quick steps to choosing a new electric supplier:
           
Compare offers - Compare your current and prospective suppliers' price
(the "price to compare" found on your current electric bill).

Contact suppliers - Contact the suppliers in which you are most
interested. Ask any questions you have about their offer and what you
need to do to switch. You do not have to contact your local electric
utility.

Read and understand your contract - Check the
terms and conditions before signing a contract. Only give out your
current account number when you are ready to sign.

Receive confirmation - After you sign up, your new supplier will contact
your current utility and mail a confirmation to you. You have seven
days from the postmark date on the confirmation to cancel the contract
if you change your mind.

To help clear up the confusion about energy choice in Ohio, Dayton Recreation & Youth Services and Duke Energy Retail are teaming up to host educational programs at two recreation centers. These events are free and open to the entire Dayton community.

November 7 and November 14
11 a.m.
Lohrey Recreation Center
2366 Glenarm Ave
Dayton, OH 45420

November 12 and November 19
11:45 a.m.
Greater Dayton Recreation Center
2021 W 3rd St
Dayton, OH 45417

We asked DP&L workers why you should stay with them.

DP&L is a 100-year-old company with employees who live and work in our counties,"  said Mary Ann Cabel of DP&L.

Now, you'll just have to decide what's good enough for you.

Connect with ABC 22/FOX 45 Reporter Wale Aliyu on Facebook and Twitter.

 
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