Smart Grid / PrePay Service

PrePay Service, the new “pay as you go” payment option

How would you like to open a new MLGW account without paying a deposit and know that you would avoid all future late fees?   This money-saving “pay as you go” plan is a new opportunity for residential MLGW customers with smart meters.

MLGW customers with smart meters now have the option of paying for utilities whenever they want, as often as they want—with no deposit, no late fees and no electric reconnect fees.  MLGW’s new PrePay service gives you more control, convenience and cost savings than traditional billing.  MLGW PrePay is a plan similar to a prepaid cellphone or to filling up your gas tank—you pay upfront and, as you consume, your remaining balance decreases.  You can “refuel” by adding money to your MLGW PrePay account any time you choose.  The www.MyUsage.com website and mobile app give you access to your daily PrePay account information, plus you select the best methods to notify you of remaining balance, daily usage and other details.
 

PrePay may be a good option if you want to:

  • Avoid paying deposits, late fees and electric reconnect charges
  • Set your own payment schedule by paying smaller amounts toward your utilities, whenever you want
  • Lower your utility expense through greater attention to usage with alerts, website and mobile app
     

PrePay customers must start their account with a $100 initial payment.  As costs for daily utility use and other MLGW-billed services reduce that amount, notifications are sent using customer-specified channels to provide your existing balance.  When the balance approaches $35, a low balance alert is sent to remind you to add money to your PrePay account soon.  As long as you keep your balance above $0, your services continue.

The average prepaid utility customer reduces their utility use by 10% to 12%, since greater awareness typically leads to conservation, according to industry studies.  That’s money you can spend on other things, all while receiving service from MLGW.

To enroll in MLGW PrePay, visit any MLGW Community Office  and speak to a Credit Counselor to sign the PrePay Service Agreement.  (NOTE:  PrePay currently is available to new MLGW customers.   Existing customers will have the option of enrolling later in 2016.) 

 

PrePay and Standard Account Comparison

 

Standard Account

PrePay Account

Electric Rate

Same

Same

Deposit Required

Yes, typically $200

No

Minimum Initial Balance

$0

$100

Late Fees

6% of unpaid balance

$0

Reconnect Fee, electric (next day)

$25

$0

Reconnect Fee, electric (same day)

$25

$0

 

Stay Connected

PrePay offers several methods for you to track your usage, payments, remaining balance and other important information.  The MyUsage.com website and mobile app  provide convenient access to your account details.  Likewise, you can specify which alerts you wish to receive based on your PrePay account status.  These options are available:

Alert Type

Email

Text

Telephone

Low Balance Alert

Yes

Yes

Yes

Pending Disconnect Alert

Yes

Yes

Yes

Daily Balance Alert

Yes

 

 

Recharge Alert

Yes

 

 

Disconnection Alert

Yes

 

 

Reconnection Alert

Yes

 

 

 

PrePay Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can anyone sign up for PrePay?

No.  PrePay requires residential customers to have smart meters for all MLGW services as daily usage information is needed to calculate the daily PrePay balance.  In addition, PrePay initially is available to new MLGW customers, but existing customers will have the option of enrolling later in 2016.  PrePay customers cannot participate in AutoPay (monthly bank draft program), Budget Billing (average monthly billing) nor have Life Support services. 
 

  • Is there a fee to participate in PrePay?

No.  MLGW is offering the PrePay service as customer service option.

 

  • Why would I want to prepay MLGW for service?

By prepaying for services, you avoid the $200 security deposit to start an MLGW account and you eliminate late fees and electric service reconnection fees.  Plus, you can make smaller payments more often to avoid getting a large monthly utility bill.  And, studies show that PrePay customers ultimately save on utility expenses because they become more aware of their consumption.

 

  • What types of payments can I make with PrePay?

While you can add money to your PrePay account through any MLGW payment channel, you should keep in mind that some payment methods post to your account faster than others.  If you receive a pending disconnection text, it means your account has reached $0, so you will want to use faster methods (such as online or at an MLGW Community Office) rather than mailing a check to MLGW. 

 

  • Is there a minimum amount to open a PrePay account?

Yes.  New customers must pay $100 to open a PrePay account.  That money is immediately available to apply toward your daily cost of MLGW and non-MLGW services.

 

  • How often can I pay on my PrePay account?

As often as you’d like!  Traditional billing produces a monthly bill and you pay the entire amount, which can be challenging for some customers.  With PrePay, you can pay smaller amounts as often as needed.  MLGW recommends paying $50 each time, as our research shows the average daily cost of service is about $7.00—which will be higher during Summer and Winter when your home uses more energy for heating and cooling.

 

  • What services are included in PrePay?

Every service included on an MLGW bill is covered in PrePay.  Electric, gas and water services are updated based on your daily use.  All other MLGW and non-MLGW services—such as sewer, solid waste, stormwater and street lighting—are deducted based on pro-rated daily costs.  Your PrePay account balance is adjusted each morning by 11:00am, based on the previous day’s usage and pro-rated costs.

 

  • How do I see my balance with PrePay?

PrePay customers can use the My Usage website (www.myusage.com) and the MyUsage mobile app to view their account information, update alert types and update contact information.

 

  • Will I receive an MLGW bill with PrePay?

No, but MLGW will mail a monthly statement showing your total usage and costs based on your home’s traditional billing cycle.  This statement will have a “do not pay” notice and a $0 amount due.

 

  • What happens if my PrePay account balance reaches $0?

If you forget to make a payment and your PrePay account reaches zero, you will receive a pending disconnect notice, which is your reminder to make a payment immediately or your service will be disconnected.  If payment is not received that day, a disconnect order will be scheduled for the following business day.

 

  • What happens if my PrePay account is disconnected?

If you make a payment immediately, your MLGW services will be restored shortly after.  If you do not make a payment, you will be removed from PrePay, put on traditional post-paid billing and you will receive a final bill.