Cost Savings & Financial Assistance

Three Ways to Minimize Your Energy Costs:

1. Check your rate plan using a rate comparison tool

Both PG&E and SCE offer online calculators to help determine the most cost-effective rate plan based on your historical usage. Please note that while these calculators base their estimates on the cost of PG&E- or SCE-only service, they should offer 3CE customers insight into their best rate.

2. Switch to PG&E’s Electric Home Rate Plan

If you are a PG&E customer and have begun to electrify your home with an electric vehicle, battery storage, heat pump space conditioning or a heat pump water heater, you may want to consider the Electric Home Rate Plan (E-ELEC). This rate includes a $15-per-month Base Services Charge, but the average cost per unit of energy is lower. The plan works well for customers who charge their electric vehicle(s) overnight and shift their energy usage to lower-priced times of day.

3. Understand and respond to Time-of-Use rate changes

If you are on a Time-of-Use rate plan, it is important to understand the hours when electricity is most expensive. Generally, energy costs are significantly higher from 4 pm to 9 pm. The increased cost for these peak times is due to both higher demand and a drop in energy production, especially from solar. Moving your heavy usage from “peak” to “off peak” hours can let you significantly lower your electricity bill without changing your consumption. For example, if you have an electric vehicle or a Hybrid, please consider charging after 9 pm or midnight, depending on your plan.

Get Paid to Save Energy with OhmConnect

To help our customers manage their energy usage during peak times, 3CE has partnered with OhmConnect, a free service that alerts users when energy is most expensive. Signing up is easy, and participants earn rewards for saving energy. See below for more information.OhmConnect is a free service that rewards users for conserving energy. When you sign up, you’ll receive alerts when electricity is most expensive. If you use less energy during this time, OhmConnect will reward you with gift cards or even cash via PayPal — in addition to the savings on your utility bill. Participants can also win prizes and buy discounted smart-home tech in the Rewards Marketplace.

Sign up here

Financial Assistance:

Clean Energy. Same Financial Assistance Programs. 

3CE customers are eligible for California’s energy assistance programs. If you have recently transferred generation service from PG&E or SCE to 3CE, any payment assistance programs in which you were enrolled will remain the same and continue to apply to your monthly electricity bill. 


California Alternate Rates for Energy Program (CARE) and Family Electric Rate Assistance Program (FERA) (Monthly Bill Discounts) 

CARE and FERA are discount programs that provide significant discounts to customers who qualify for bill assistance based on their household size and income.


PG&E’s CARE and FERA Webpage 

SCE’s CARE and FERA Webpage

Medical Baseline Program (Monthly Bill Discounts) 

The Medical Baseline Program, also known as the Medical Baseline Allowance, is an assistance program for residential customers who depend on power for certain medical and independent living needs. This program provides: 

  1. A lower rate on your monthly energy bill 
  1. Extra notifications in advance of a Public Safety Power Shutoff 

How the Medical Baseline Program Works: All residential customers receive an allotment of energy every month at the lowest price available on their rate. This is called the Baseline Allowance

The Medical Baseline Program requires you to continue paying your monthly PG&E or SCE bill. Nonpayment can result in the disconnection of your utility services. 


PG&E’s Medical Baseline Webpage 

SCE’s Medical Baseline Webpage 

Arrearage Management Plan (AMP) Program (Bill Payment Assistance) 

AMP is a payment plan option to help qualifying residential customers reduce unpaid balances on their bills. In 3CE’s service area, this program is administrated by PG&E and SCE, regulated by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), and available to all customers.

PG&E’S AMP Webpage 

SCE’s AMP Webpage 

Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) (Bill Payment Assistance) (Energy Savings) 

Are you struggling to pay your electric bills and potentially could be disconnected? LIHEAP provides residential customers with financial support. 

There are several portions of the program that help accomplish this goal, such as: 

  • The Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) provides one-time financial assistance to help balance an eligible household’s utility bill. 
  • The Energy Crisis Intervention Program (ECIP) assists low-income households that are in a crisis situation. An example would be a household receiving a 24-48 hour disconnect notice or service termination by their utility company. Another example would be a household facing an energy-related crisis that could be deemed potentially life-threatening in the household, such as a combustible appliance. 
  • LIHEAP Weatherization provides free energy efficiency upgrades for low-income households to lower their monthly utility bills while also improving the health and safety of the household’s occupants.   
  • Education on basic energy efficiency practices and instruction on the proper use and maintenance of installed weatherization measures. 
  • Energy budget counseling. 


LIHEAP Webpage 

ComUnify (Santa Barbara County) 

Percentage of Income Payment Plan (PIPP)

The Percentage of Income Payment Plan (PIPP) is designed to help you save money by capping monthly electric and gas charges at a set amount, plus taxes and fees. The four-year program began in 2023 and is only available to a limited number of eligible low-income customers.

PIPP Webpage