Help With Your Electric Bill
If you’ve faced a sudden loss of income, you may find it difficult to pay your electricity bill. The good news is there are a number of ways you can cover it and keep your lights on during these times.
So, If you need help with your electric bill, keep reading to learn about the various places you can get it.
How to get emergency help paying your electric bill
No one plans on having an emergency, but sometimes they happen. If you're in a financial bind and need help paying your electric bill, don't worry - there are options available to you.
Contact the utility company
Call your utility company as soon as you realize you may not be able to pay your bill. They may be able to work with you to come up with an affordable payment plan. Chances are they'll understand your situation and offer solutions to receive electricity even if you're struggling with your payment. Be sure to jot down when you called them, who you spoke to, and what they agreed on – get an email confirmation if possible.
Ask about utility company relief programs
Many utility companies have created special programs for customers who need help with their electric bill.
JEA in Florida, for example, is crediting customer accounts during COVID, allowing them to save up to $25 per month on electricity. Tacoma Public Utilities in Washington is offering a similar emergency bill credit to customers in need.
It’s a good idea to visit your utility company’s website or give them a call to find out if they have any programs, like these, in place.
Research Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
LIHEAP is a federal program that supports approximately 6 million low-income households each year with utility bills.
If you qualify, LIHEAP can send money directly to your utility company to cover a portion of your bill. They can also help you improve the energy efficiency of your home by sealing doors or windows, installing insulation, or fixing a broken air conditioner or furnace. Since each state receives a different amount of government funding, your location, as well as your household size and income, will dictate whether you’re eligible.
Request charity aid
Charitable organizations can provide you with the temporary financial relief you need to keep your utilities running. These nonprofits have funds set aside to support people who are experiencing financial hardship, so don’t hesitate to contact them.
Salvation Army, Jewish Federation of North America, Catholic Charities, and Love Inc. are several examples of national organizations that have programs built to assist those facing shutoffs. You can contact these organizations directly to see how they can help you pay your bill on time.
Look into short-term loan options
Also known as a cash advance, a payday loan is a small-dollar loan that typically aligns with your income dates – meaning that you’ll pay back your loan when you get your next paycheck. It’ll likely come with a fee for every $100 borrowed up to a certain amount, which is determined by the regulations in your state.
For over 25 years, Advance America has proudly served the hardworking with personal loan options. Advance America combines a 5-star Trustpilot customer service rating with a simple application and instant approval decisions to make the process seamless. You can apply for a payday loan in-store and walk out the door with cash. In some states, you can also apply for a payday loan online and receive money in as soon as 24 hours after you submit your application. A payday loan is a fast, convenient way to cover your electric bill.
Make an effort to reduce your electricity bill
The lower your electricity bill is, the easier it’ll be for you to pay for it. So try to do what you can to reduce it as much as possible by washing and drying dishes by hand and make sure to clean your HVAC filters on a regular basis. Also, don’t forget to turn your lights off when you’re not using them. You can also plan to save towards longer-term energy efficient items like a programmable thermostat or insulating your home. By following these easy tips, you’ll find your electricity bill to be more affordable.
Why is my electric bill so high?
If you're wondering why your electric bill seems so high, a few things could be causing the issue. One possibility is that your home is not very energy-efficient. If your windows and doors aren't properly sealed, for example, you may be losing heat in the winter and cool air in the summer, which can drive up your energy costs.
Another possibility is that you're using more electricity than usual. This could be because of appliances that are always left on or higher or lower temperatures that require you to run your air conditioner or heater more often. Making your home more energy-efficient can be an excellent long-term solution, while being mindful of your electricity usage can help in the short term.
How to save on your electric bill
You can save money on the electric bill by making minor changes to how you use energy in your home. Whether you're looking for ways to reduce your carbon footprint or just want to find some easy ways to save a bit of cash, these tips can help you slash your electric bill without too much effort:
Get energy-efficient light bulbs
An easy way to save on your electric bill is to switch out your light bulbs for energy-efficient options. LED bulbs use about 90% less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs. Additionally, they can last up to 25 times longer. So, not only can this help you save money on your electric bill, but you may also save money in the future by not having to replace your bulbs as often.
Change air filters often
Another easy way you can lower your electric bill is to change your air filter regularly. A dirty air filter can make your AC unit work harder, which uses more energy and drives up costs. Many filters need changing every 1 to 3 months, but check yours regularly and make changes as required.
Turn off the lights
This one is pretty self-explanatory. When you're not using a particular light, make sure to turn it off, so you're not wasting electricity. This simple habit can go a long way in reducing your overall energy usage and costs.
Seal air leaks
Homes can be full of tiny air leaks that can allow cool air to escape and warm air to seep in, making your AC unit work overtime (and driving up your electric bill). To help prevent this, consider taking some time to seal cracks or gaps around your doors and windows. You might also want to invest in weather stripping or caulking to prevent air leakage.
Switch to a programmable thermostat
A programmable thermostat can save you money by automatically raising or lowering the temperature when you're not home. In the winter, set it a few degrees lower when you're sleeping or at work to reduce heating costs. During summer, do the opposite by setting the temperature a few degrees higher when everyone is out of the house.
How to get help if your electricity is disconnected
If you find yourself in the tough situation of having your electricity disconnected, don't panic — there are several steps you can take to get it turned back on. First, contact your electricity provider and let them know about the disconnection. They may explain why your electricity was disconnected and your options to restore it. Depending on the situation, this could involve catching up on unpaid bills or fixing a faulty meter. If necessary, you may be able to arrange a payment plan to ensure that you pay all future bills on time.
In addition, consider reaching out to local resources for assistance with paying overdue bills, such as government aid programs or nonprofit organizations. By taking these steps and communicating with your electricity provider, you might quickly address any issues and restore your power.
Advance America can help with your electric bill
If you need emergency help with your electric bill in the form of quick funds, Advance America can help. We offer a range of personal loans, like payday loans, emergency loans and installment loans, that can get you money right away. Getting a loan is a quick and easy process, and you don’t need perfect credit to qualify. Once you fill out an application online or in-store, you could receive your money that same day if you get approved. Choose the loan that works for your situation to start meeting your short-term financial goals.