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Peoples Gas parent to be acquired in $9.1 billion deal

Trending: Utilities are consolidating and getting bigger.

Peoples and North Shore, already part of a utility holding company headquartered in Chicago, are being bought by a Wisconsin-based utility holding company.

NICOR is owned by a utility holding company with its headquarters in Atlanta.

The acquisition of Peoples is following a trend of consolidation of regional utilities. The leading argument for consolidation is that redundant “overhead” costs can be consolidated. What consolidation usually means is that the local utility is no longer local. Remember that Peoples, NICOR, and ComEd are not competitive companies eking out an unknown profit. They have a monopoly (much like the game!) where they get to recover their set profit margin on expenses incurred in providing their essential service. That is to say, the more they spend on providing their service, the more profit they make which is why regulators approve their costs.

monopoly money

So consolidation means what? Typically, regionalized services by utilities means a loss of stable local jobs accompanied by higher costs. Remember it’s not a competitive industry. They get a regulated return for delivering energy. That’s why reducing costs does not translate to lower energy costs (note; if they spend less, they make less profit). Consolidating accounting, customer service, and management typically results in longer wait times, longer outage times, and higher returns to corporate shareholders.

The good news is that you do have competition for your energy services. Realgy Energy Services offer electric and natural gas service that is consistently below the utility. We compete for your business, by saving you money. And we do enjoy competing with bigger utilities!

Read the full Chicago Sun-Times article: “Wisconsin Energy buying Peoples Gas parent Integrys for $9.1 billion”.

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For all our natural gas and electric customers not currently on a fixed price, Realgy offers ServiceMatchTM as follows:

ServiceMatchTMBuyer has the right to present all written offers to RES that provide pricing and terms for service under the Program. RES will match the proposed terms and pricing from all qualified electric or natural gas service providers. If RES cannot offer better terms or pricing or match the same terms and pricing, RES will transfer Buyer to the new electric or natural gas supplier upon Buyer’s written request at the end of the Term. ServiceMatchTM is not valid when Buyer has a Fixed Price.


Please be aware that ServiceMatchTM is not a new service.

Realgy offers this and other services including but not limited to PriceWatchTM and natural gas storage, to all our eligible customers.

If you have any questions regarding ServiceMatchTM, fixed prices, or the end of your current Term, contact a Realgy Energy Services customer service representative at 860-300-6747.

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Storage Season is here!

The natural gas you have stored starting April 1st running through October 31st will begin to be added into your monthly natural gas usage from November 1st through March 31st.

You have probably noticed your summer bills were a little higher than normal, this is because Realgy Energy Services has been storing 20% of your natural gas annual usage at the lower summer rates, to be used during the winter months when the demand and more importantly the pricing for natural gas historically increase.

You may be asking do I have natural gas in storage, and if so how much?

If you are a customer of Realgy Energy Services and you live in Indiana or Illinois and are services by one of the following Utilities: Nicor, Nipsco, North Shore and Peoples Gas.

You most likely have natural gas in storage.

To find out how much natural gas you have in storage you can either:

Log into your account and view your account summary

Call one of our customer services representatives at (877) 300 6747

Enjoy the saving that the Realgy Energy Services Storage Program provides and have a wonderful toasty warm winter!

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Realgy Energy Services Now Offering Natural Gas Services to Residential Illinois Customers



At their customers’ request Realgy Energy Services is now serving Illinois residential natural gas customers.

The president of Realgy, Michael Vrtis has announced that the Illinois Commerce Commission has given authorization to extend service to residential customers in the North Shore, Peoples, and Nicor service territories. Realgy was previously authorized to service only retail commercial natural gas accounts in Illinois.

“Our expansion into the residential natural gas market is the next logical step in Realgy’s plans to expand service to our customers in the Illinois energy market,” said Vrtis. “It’s the perfect complement to extend our existing Illinois electric service. This expansion will give all residential and commercial customers in Illinois a chance to save money on both their natural gas and electricity.”

Realgy Energy Services is an energy marketer serving retail and residential customers in Indiana, Illinois and Michigan. They have been serving Illinois customers beginning in 2004; since that time they have had a perfect record (certified A+) with the Better Business Bureau; and have been recognized as an Inc 500 company in 2011 and 2012.

Realgy, LLC
Michael Vrtis
675 Oakwood Avenue
West Hartford, CT


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Realgy Energy Services has been approved to serve Illinois electric and natural gas commercial and residential markets

At the request of our current Electric and Natural Gas customers Realgy has sought and received approval from the Illinois Commerce Commission to expand our services in the Illinois energy markets.

“This is the next logical step in Realgy’s plan to expand in the Illinois energy market and is the perfect complement to our existing gas services in the Nicor, Peoples, and North Shore markets,” stated Michael Vrtis, President of Realgy.

The Realgy Energy Services Illinois electric service area now includes both commercial and residential customers in Commonwealth Edison, Ameren Illinois, MidAmerican Energy and Mt. Carmel Public Utility. Realgy was previously only approved to serve commercial Commonwealth Edison customers.

The Illinois natural gas service area now includes both commercial and residential customers in Nicor, Peoples Gas, and North Shore. Realgy was previously only approved to serve commercial Nicor, Peoples Gas, and North Shore customers.

If you would like to enroll a residential or commercial account in any of these service areas, contact a Realgy Energy Services Energy Broker, at (877)-300 -6747 X 32 and have your bills ready.

For the full press release please visit the Realgy Energy Services Blog Press Release: Realgy Energy Services Now Offering Electricity Services to all Illinois Customers and Press Release: Realgy Energy Services Now Offering Natural Gas Services to all Illinois Customers

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Natural Gas Safety

Natural gas in one of the safest energy sources available; it is non-toxic and has no odor in its natural form. Natural gas will not ignite by itself, but combined with air and a spark it will catch fire.

When not burned completely natural gas produces carbon monoxide (CO), which can cause flu-like symptoms including:

headaches, nausea, dizziness, drowsiness or fatigue, burning eyes, confusion and loss of coordination

Over 10,000 people receive medical treatment and hundreds die each year from carbon monoxide poisoning. In many cases, victims are aware they are not well, but become too disoriented to save themselves. Particularly vulnerable are pregnant women, small children, senior citizens and people with heart or respiratory problems.

It is always recommended to have a working CO detector in your home or business if you use natural gas as an energy source.

In its natural state natural gas has no smell, so your utility company adds a chemical odorant called methanethiol to help make natural gas leaks easier to detect. If you smell rotten eggs, it’s most likely not a well hidden Easter egg, but a natural gas leak, leave the building and call your Utility Company right away. You can find an emergency hotline on most utility invoices if there is not emergency number call the customer service number.

Learn more about Natural Gas Safety and Emergency Procedures:
Nipsco, Stay Safe “Natural Gas Leak Emergencies
Semco Energy, Safety and Emergency Information “Reporting a Gas Leak
DTE Energy, Safety “Natural Gas Safety
Citizens Gas, Safety “If You Smell Gas
Michigan Gas Utilities, “Emergency Procedures
Nicor Gas, Safety “Emergency Information
Consumers Energy, Safety “Gas Leaks and Safety Tips
Peoples Gas, Safety “Emergency Procedures
North Shore Gas, Safety “Emergency Procedures

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