Respond Power Customers Have Questions

Respond PowerAccording to some forums Respond Power is an active electricity company in Pennsylvania and has been doing the door to door sales thing in Philadelphia. Don’t knock door to door sales. Those guys have will power but still stay on your toes and ask questions as they need to work for that new electric customer.

In a newly deregulated electricity market a door to door electric service sales person can be a little confusing as some customers don’t yet realize they have a choice in Pennsylvania. PPL is all many people even know in places like Philadelphia.

It is up to an electric company sales person to explain what electric choice means and differentiate themselves and separate their company from the pole and wires company for that area.

Respond Power Electric CompanyFor instance a customer at a home that is approached by a Respond Power electric company rep may think that because their electric company for the last several decades was PPL that this guy is with PPL electricity company.

You cannot fault Respond Power for the natural confusion that develops from an electricity market new to electric deregulation as is the case with Philadelphia.

Here are the facts folks, Respond Power is a retail electricity company and the reason you would want to switch to their electric company is if they offer a cheaper electric rate over PPL or whomever you may use.

When deciding to switch to a company like Respond Power you want to review their electricity agreement contract. Here are some typical questions you would want to ask listed below.

Questions to Ask in Order to Review Respond Power Rate Plans Being Offered Door to Door

  • Is this “competitive” rate a fixed rate or a variable rate? Typically a variable rate is a teaser price that initially looks low in price but is raised on customers after the first month.
  • Is this a fixed rate? A fixed rate normally should remain the same the entire length of the energy contract.
  • Is this an “all-in” bundled electricity rate? A bundled rate includes all of Respond Power’s charges as well as PPL electric utility charges (PPL is the pole and wires company in Philadelphia not to be confused with PPL EnergyPlus)
  • If this is a fixed electric rate does it include all charges including PPL pole and wires charges as well as any ancillary charges, fuel surcharges and misc charges averaged into the rate? Follow up with, are their fuel surcharges that will increase this rate during the term of the contract? The fuel surcharge question is useful as some Philadelphia retail electricity companies have been known to advertise a fixed rate and hide a fuel surcharge in the contract. Respond Power has not been accused of doing a tactic like this.

We assume Respond Power adheres to ethical and legal guidelines in their sales and marketing as well as how they have their energy contract written. These questions will help in verifying that you are getting a good electric rate without hidden fees and charges.

If you were confused as we have seen on some forums as thinking that the Respond Power door to door sales rep was PPL Electric Company we want to make it clear that these are two separate companies.

If you switched to Respond Power you will still get one bill but you will see the electric bill split into two separate sections. One section will show the retail electricity provider charges from Respond Power and the other section will show the PPL electricity transmission and poles and wires charges.

During the process of being told that you will still get an electric bill from PPL it could be that some customers simply misunderstood and thought that they were choosing PPL as their electric company at a cheaper rate.

In reality a customer who misunderstood in this way had switched away from PPL electricity company and chose a “competitive” rate with Respond Power at hopefully a cheaper price than they currently pay with PPL.

9 Thoughts on “Respond Power Customers Have Questions

  1. Bill R on April 30, 2011 at 3:31 am said:

    We were “visited” today by Respond Power reps. My wife spoke with them first and asked me if we were interested in saving 10%. I told her that we’re already managing our energy costs – generation in Vermont and distribution through PECO. Apparently these sales people wouldn’t take “no thank you” as an answer, they waited at the door until I spoke with them.

    I explained I understood the deregulation.
    —–> That wasn’t good enough.

    I asked if they were with PECO. They said no, but PECO sent them. They stated that PECO sent a notice in one of my bills. They insulted my intelligence by saying that “I must have missed the notice in my electric bill” – Oh I saw the notice about costs going up, but nothing, nada, zilch about Respond Power.

    They insisted that they weren’t selling anything – but they were selling energy.
    —–> That wasn’t good enough.
    I explained that we already purchase our energy from a supplier in Vermont – I switched in 2000 when the PUC allowed consumers to purchase energy generated by companies other than PECO.
    —–> That wasn’t good enough.
    They repeatedly asked to see our bill to determine if we “qualified” – I asked “what is the threshold”. After scratching his head and me rephrasing – he responded “250 Kwh, if you use more than that you qualify”. Gee willikers, everyone must qualify.

    I asked for literature and if RP has a website – they gave me a single page w/ marketing bullets, but no real information other than a phone number. They stated “others” would come – I asked them to squelch that. I would research and decide – if another sales person from Respond Power showed up, well there never will be a working relationship between us and them (sure…. that’s gonna stop ‘em ;)

    Anyway… Respond Power (RP) is a legit company that uses hard sell tactics misrepresenting almost everything. The BBB gives RP an ‘A-‘ rating – although RP is not accredited http://www.bbb.org/new-york-city/business-reviews/electric-companies/respond-power-llc-in-orangeburg-ny-122685/

    Comparing rates at PaPowerSwitch.com does show a savings vs. PECO, but only about 6%, not the 10% mentioned by the sales people (or the 12 – 15 mentioned on their website).

    So yep you can save money on your energy costs – you could have been doping that for 11 years. These folks are leveraging the new deregulation in their favor. The PUC removed the caps utilities could charge in 2011 and allows them to operate on the markets. This can’t be good in the long run – think Enron (they manipulated energy costs on a DIY market which almost bankrupt the state of California).

    Caveat Emptor, and if you think it will change anything call Respond Power (877 973-7763) and respond to their sales tactics. Push hard and don’t take no for an answer until they say it 10 times. I’ll wait for the second coming ;) and flame whomever I speak with at Respond Power. I can deal with one hard sales pitch, but I am not willing to subject my family to a barrage of interruptions. If I wanted hard sales, I’d go buy a car.

    ==============================================
    ========= PECO says ==========
    ==============================================
    What the Electric Choice Program Means to You
    The Electric Choice Program was developed by the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) and the state’s electric distribution companies. As of 2000, PECO customers can choose a competitive Electric Generation Supplier to supply their electricity, or to be served by PECO under default generation service.

    One-Step Process
    The Electric Choice Program involves a one-step process: supplier selection. No matter which company you choose to supply your electricity, PECO will continue to deliver it to your home or business, as well as, provide you with the same reliable service you’ve come to expect.

    Obligations
    All PECO customers have their choice of electric generation suppliers. You do not have to choose a supplier and there are no deadlines for participation.

    Will I save by choosing a competitive Electric Generation Supplier?
    Any additional savings that you receive each month as an Electric Choice customer will depend on the rate charged by the electric generation supplier you choose.

    The prices charged for electricity by your EGS could be higher or lower than the prices PECO charges for the same service.
    PECO’s Price-To-Compare can be found at any of the following websites:

    -> All rates
    http://www.peco.com/pecores/energy_rates/energy_choice/pricetocompare.htm
    http://www.papowerswitch.com
    -> Residential rates only
    http://www.oca.state.pa.us/Industry/Electric/elecomp/ElectricGuides.htm

    PECO encourages you to shop for your electricity supply and make a choice that best suites your needs.
    ==============================================

  2. I was recently visted by these sleaze bags from this fraudulent co. I directly asked them if I was going to keep my service by signing the form. They said yes they worked for my company!!! I was lied too! They said that they were doing some kind of analysis. I know a sucker born every minute. My excuse, I’m a traumatic brain injury survivor and was taken advantage of. Is there anything I can do to get out of this “sales agreement”? I didn’t want in it.

    • admin on April 11, 2012 at 6:23 pm said:

      Anita, you can call the Public Utility Commission in your area. They will investigate the matter and fine them for this behavior. I am very sorry that someone took advantage of you in this way. The problem is they likely hired people with absolutely no professional conduct or track record and so these are the results they get. Slamming like this should never be allowed. Be sure to contact your PUC about this!

  3. Paul Z. on February 17, 2012 at 5:41 am said:

    A door-to-door salesman from Respond Power came by trying to sell me on their service. I told him I wasn’t interested and he left. A week later I get a notice in the mail informing me that they signed me up anyway! Had to call PECO and have them cancel it.

    • Paul Z. on February 21, 2012 at 8:35 pm said:

      Follow-up to this post, I got in touch with customer service at Respond Power and was told that they had a signed application with my name on it. I told them that I never filled out or signed the form the sales agent had with him and asked if they could send me a copy of it. They did, and it was signed, but not in my handwriting. I can only assume the sales agent forged my signature to close out the paperwork. Respond Power says that they stand by their sales practices. They refused to acknowledge that the signature wasn’t mine, but said they would cancel my service anyway.

      • admin on April 11, 2012 at 6:18 pm said:

        Paul, that is unbelievable. They obviously took no care in who they hired to go door to door selling electricity service. Slamming is a very serious offense and should have harsh enough penalties to prevent providers from hiring low life’s that will forge a signature.

    • admin on April 11, 2012 at 6:20 pm said:

      We saw your previous comment and let me just say that this type of practice is so low on the scale of professional conduct that I don’t see why a stiffer penalty is not put into the regulatory law. Slamming should be harshly punished by the Public Utility Commission every time.

  4. PA homeowner on March 13, 2012 at 11:52 pm said:

    “We assume Respond Power adheres to ethical and legal guidelines in their sales and marketing as well as how they have their energy contract written.”

    Maybe the company itself adheres to ethical guidelines, but their sales contractors DO NOT.

    Two extremely pushy individuals from Respond Power defied the clearly marked NO SOLICITING signs in my neighborhood and went door to door one night a month or so ago. After I came home from work I walked around the block to get my mail and noticed a car circling around the street slowly. Not five minutes after I entered my home, the doorbell rang several times in quick succession followed by an incessant pounding on my door.

    Against my better judgment I answered the door to find two individuals who stated they represented Respond Power. “Okay ma’am, we caught you at a good time. You just got home.”

    Did they watch me walk to my door after I grabbed my mail? Did they watch my light come on? Obviously. I am sickened by their unethical tactics. I gave them a resounding no.

    • admin on April 11, 2012 at 6:16 pm said:

      Even the very large energy providers have these feet on the street customer gathering campaigns. It is quite aggressive I agree and I would not be a happy camper either.

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