Let’s Talk Utilities!

I know, I know. Utilities are not high on the list of topics we all like to discuss. Humor me as I take you back to early June 2023.

We closed on our beautiful, brand-new home in a burgeoning subdivision of Cypress. We closed on a Wednesday. Our furniture and most of our worldly belongings arrived on Thursday. We remarkably remembered to set up our internet, which they installed that Thursday. But we somehow made it to the following Monday before we realized we had not set up water, gas, electricity, or trash—all very essential services! An extremely kind and helpful neighbor shared her utility information with me. (Ours was emailed a month or month before we closed—not an ideal move on our builder’s part, but I digress…). This considerate neighbor told me the water set-up was a little quirky. As we were preparing to depart the next day, I packed up my kiddo and drove to the Inframark service center in Katy. Oh, wait—first I stopped by our local grocery store to pick up a money order. Because Inframark would only accept checks or money orders. No cash, no credit cards (and definitely no form of digital payment!). Whew! Task complete.

Gas was easily set up with a phone call.

Next on to electricity and, oh boy, were we jolted by that endeavor. Because we are in unincorporated Harris County, we have approximately 136 service providers available to provide our electricity. I’m not kidding! I don’t know that we made the right decision. We had no idea how to choose an electric company with absolutely no prior information on how much power we’d use. And we didn’t have a crystal ball available to look ahead to the 40+ days of 100+ temps that summer. With little more than a dart throw, we selected one of the many options available, and away we went (or, away our money went!).

If you are relocating to Cypress and would like a little guidance, here’s an official summary of setting up utilities:

  1. Determine your MUD district (when in doubt, ask a neighbor!)
  2. Inframark is your water provider. Find their start page here: https://www.inframark.com/customers/start-service(side note: I could be very wrong, but my understanding was that the initial $20 deposit had to be delivered in person. And they only accept checks, money orders, or cashier’s checks for in-person payments)
  3. CenterPoint Energy provides our gas service. Find more here: https://www.centerpointenergy.com/en-us/residential?sa=ho.
  4. Our neighborhood uses Best Trash (and your trash bill is paid through your Inframark water bill. Don’t ask me why–I’m just relaying info here!) Find more at: https://www.best-trash.com. (And yes, you need to set up trash service separate from setting up water service, even though you pay them together.)
  5. For electricity, I’m sorry, but it’s not an easy process. Ask neighbors. Ask your Realtor. We picked on provider who put us on a month-to-month plan, because we really didn’t know how much energy we’d use! If I absolutely had to give you a recommendation, I’d say find a provider that gives you the option to go month-to-month. Once you have about a year’s worth of usage, you can make a more informed decision.

If you’ve been in this boat and want to share any additional advice, please do so! If I’ve missed anything, feel free to ask questions below.

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