CLEVELAND - Door to door salesman, flyers, and phone calls are popular this time of year as gas suppliers try to get you to lock in their advertised low rates for the winter. However, Five on Your Side investigations have found consumers are confused about the program and rogue salesman are making it hard to make sense of all the offers.
Joe Daugirdas, also known as Joe the Coupon Guy , said to first consider whether you want a variable or fixed rate term. It depends on the market. Sometimes, a variable price will give you the best rate but if it's a rough winter and prices go up you will pay. With a fixed rate, you know what you will pay for the term of the contract.
If you sign up for a contract, read the fine print. There are often early termination fees attached. We've done two stories recently on these fees. If you are charged with a fee and don't think you owe it, demand proof. An Akron man recently demanded proof and said it wasn't his signature on the contract. He disputed it and the fee was dropped .
Before you make any decisions, do your own research. Look beyond the hype and marketing from the gas or electric supplier. The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) has an Apples to Apples Chart that breaks down all the fees for the various programs.