Last updated: May 2019
Before I was a mortgage broker, I worked for years in the wholesale natural gas (and power) marketing and transportation industry. The two energy forms are very closely related, hence why you, as a home owner or tenant, might get someone knocking on your door trying to get you to sign a "retail energy contract" to secure natural and/or power supply. Usually the offer sounds like you will save a bunch of money.
The reason I am writing is, too often - as a mortgage broker - I hear stories or see client's credit reports wrecked by collections from these energy retailers, and the client's plan to buy a home is delayed trying to sort things out. In most cases, the client didn't know what they were signing and missed the part about the big early contract termination penalty. So, if you don't want to read this blog to the end, here's the punch line. DON'T sign things you don't understand (RTFC*). There are NO real savings to be had in the first place. You will do better to simply take the "default regulated-energy supplier" for your area, who - by law- can only pass through the actual market price they pay for energy to you, with no price mark-up.