Pros and Cons of Prepaid Power Plans

April 23, 2022

If you are considering a prepaid power plan, you need to know the advantages and downfalls of this service.

Every ‘power’ story begins by making sure you made the right energy choice concerning your Ohio provider. Once you know you got the most affordable rate, you can start considering prepaying your energy consumption. 

How do prepaid electricity plans work?

Prepaid power plans work just like prepaid debit cards, only you get energy instead of a prepaid latte or gym membership. The money you prepay goes toward powering your home with electricity and natural gas.

What are the advantages?

Naturally, there are quite a few advantages to opting for this service. To begin with, prepaying is more convenient, so you avoid your busy life getting in the way of paying bills which results in late fees. You become much more aware of how much you are paying each month, and you can decide when you would like to top up your balance. Moreover, you don’t have to worry about accumulating debt because you will notice if your costs skyrocket. You will not be getting monthly bills, but you will a good idea of your balance as you will be able to read from your meter screen. Additionally, many providers offer “Emergency Credit” which allows you a certain amount of extra credit in case you can’t top up your balance, giving you more time before your utilities are shut off. Also, you are protected against fluctuations of natural gas and electricity costs as your rate will be fixed.

Moreover, you can completely forget about deposits, credit checks and approval processes as paying in advance eliminates the need for them entirely.

What are the disadvantages?

As great as the above advantages sound, prepaying energy has its disadvantages.  First and foremost, the cheapest tariffs might not be accessible as prepayment meters are more expensive than others. Therefore, you cannot benefit from the fact that Ohio is a decentralized market or in other words, you renounce a bit of the freedom in making your energy choice.

Moreover, if your meter is depleted and your supply gets turned off, you will need to access your meter directly to restore your supply and that might be difficult.  Additionally, if the meter ran out of credit, you would need to repay that as well before you’re able to turn it on again. You might think this could never happen to you, but the truth is that it’s more probable than you think. For example, if you go on a short holiday without charging your credit- your utilities will end up being shut off, including your fridge which can cost you hundreds of dollars of spoiled food.

How to keep your energy bill down?

As previously mentioned, you need to make sure that you choose an energy provider that suits your needs best. You begin by doing your research on Google to list all your options or an apples to apples Ohio comparison if you will. Fortunately, many sites do all the heavy work for you and have ready-to-go lists waiting for you to browse.

Once you are certain you made the right energy choice, you need to re-evaluate your lifestyle and habits to identify areas where you can be more energy-efficient. Improvements can include investments into making your home ‘smarter’ or zero-cost changes such as washing your laundry in cold water whenever possible and turning off the lights every time you leave a room. Finally, living in Ohio has so many benefits and outdoor activities are one of them. There are many energy-free activities you can enjoy such as hiking.


Whatever you decide, know that there are benefits and disadvantages to every decision we make. Prepaid power plans are good for you if you want simplicity that eliminates paying hassle, control and no fluctuation. However, if you have trouble remembering to pay and want to make sure you have the cheapest deal out there, this might not be the best arrangement for you.

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Andi Perullo de Ledesma

I am Andi Perullo de Ledesma, a Chinese Medicine Doctor and Travel Photojournalist in Charlotte, NC. I am also wife to Lucas and mother to Joaquín. Follow us as we explore life and the world one beautiful adventure at a time.

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