If someone calls or knocks on your door promising a better deal on electricity, be cautious — you could be misled into switching to a supplier that will cost more.
Salespeople who offer to save you money may ask for your account number or to see your bill. Most likely they are selling a low introductory rate or trying to get your account number so they can switch you to a different provider without your permission.
Each year the Village bundles residential and small business electric accounts and seeks competitive bids from electricity suppliers. The state law that gave the Village this authority also allows companies to market their programs directly to consumers. While these companies may be approved by the state, high-pressure salespeople often are accused of misleading consumers about the costs and risks of signing up.
ComEd, which owns the wires and poles, continues to distribute the power and is responsible for outages and billing, regardless of the power supplier. The costs of power generation and distribution appear as separate line items on your bill.
Enrollment for Oak Park’s municipal electricity aggregation program typically opens in the fall and eligible customers are enrolled automatically unless they have opted out previously through a very specific process. Representatives from the Village or its supplier never solicit door-to-door or by telephone.
Following these basic guidelines may help avoid scams:
- Never share your account number in person or over the telephone
- Never allow a solicitor to see your bill
- Never make a payment to a door-to-door solicitor or over the telephone
- Never share your credit card number, social security number or other personal information
Residents who feel threatened by an aggressive solicitor are urged to call 911. Anyone with concerns about the status of an electricity account can call ComEd at 1.800.334.7661. You will need to provide your account number for this service. For more information on the Village’s electricity aggregation program, call 708.358.5778 or email email@example.com.