So why not make that big electric bill work for you? Devotees of credit-card rewards programs use bill paying to their advantage, earning points for every dollar they spend.
No-Fee Payments with Discover
More than 90% of utility companies offering credit-card payment options, according to Chartwell, but most are done through a third-party vendor that charges a convenience fee, which can range from $1.50 to $6.95. Less than half of the utility companies surveyed by Chartwell offered a fee-free card acceptance program and of those, only three were large investor-owned utilities. Most were small, rural electric cooperatives or municipalities.
|Use central air conditioner||696 (69.5%)|
|Have a window AC unit||166 (16.6%)|
|Ceiling fan||55 (5.5%)|
|Open the windows||84 (8.4%)|
Online bill-pay platform ChargeSmart, which processes payments to more than 500 utilities, is now offering no-fee payments for customers using Discover Card to pay their energy and water bills. The card's consumer-reward program is one of the top ranking for credit cards.
But if you pay with plastic, there is one catch: Consumers who don't pay their credit-card bill in full each month end up paying interest on the bill. Not a good thing.