The energy industry is undergoing rapid change, and technology is paving the way for innovation in the way energy is used, produced, stored and shared.
While the changing energy market has created more options for consumers, it has also resulted in more utility scams and misleading information surrounding solar installations in particular. That’s because of two factors.
Utility scams are common because of the vast number of utilities that exist, and consumers are understandably anxious with the threat of disruption to their electric, heating or water service. Second, new products and services in the energy industry provide an opening for scammers and pop-up companies to provide misleading information or shoddy products and services.
Avoid Phone Scams
A common phone scam typically begins with a phone number that appears to be from a valid utility company, claiming you have a past due account and threatening to disconnect service or take legal action. The scammer will typically demand that you use a prepaid debit card or money order, often within a very short, urgent time frame to pay the “past due” amount.
These scams are also transitioning online to contact you by email.
You can combat these scams by being aware of the status of your account. Never give your banking or personal information to someone you did not contact. Never open a link or an attachment from an email address you do not recognize.
If you ever have a question or concern about your electric bill, call LaGrange County REMC immediately at 877-463-7165. Do not use the phone number or email address given by the scammer.
Avoid Solar Scams, Use Trusted Sources
If you’re considering solar for your home, make sure you are working with a reputable company. Because this is still an emerging industry with evolving technology, there has been an increase in pop-up companies in the market to make a quick buck. Representatives of rooftop solar companies may have more sales experience than knowledge of the energy industry, and their primary goal could be making a sale and moving on to the next prospect.
LaGrange County REMC can offer a candid assessment to determine whether rooftop solar is right for you. If it isn’t, we can also assess whether our Co-op Solar program would be the right fit for your needs.
In this ever-changing environment, it’s important to remember you have a trusted energy advisor – your local electric cooperative. We are a community-focused organization that works to efficiently deliver affordable, reliable and safe energy to our members.
Remember, we’re just one call or click away, so please reach out with any questions about your electric service or bills — we’re here to help.