Learn about the Level Pay Plan and how it can help you manage your monthly natural gas bills.
The Level Pay Plan helps smooth out the ups and downs of your monthly natural gas bill by averaging your annual natural gas use and costs over a 12-month period. You pay an average bill amount each month instead of actual charges. The Level Pay Plan is not a discount program; no savings or lower rates are involved.
How the Level Pay Plan Works
First, we estimate your expected monthly usage and charges based on your past natural gas use and projected future rates. The result of this calculation is your beginning monthly Level Pay Amount, also called the Plan Amount. This is the amount you'll pay each month for a six month interval.
Each month we'll also calculate and show you your actual charges for natural gas service. The difference between Actual Charges and Plan Amounts billed is known as the variance.
After your sixth month on the Level Pay Plan (and every six months after that), we'll re-evaluate your Plan Amount and adjust it up or down to minimize the accumulation of variance balance on your account. Keep in mind that you may pay less than you actually use in the winter, but more than you actually use in the summer, and that accumulating a small variance is normal.
You'll be notified of an adjustment to your Level Pay Amount on your natural gas bill one month prior to the change. Be sure to read your bill closely each month. If further adjustment is necessary, you'll be sent a letter of notification.
Level Pay is available to:
Most residential customers, including master meter customers, who receive natural gas service from SoCalGas®.
Certain commercial and industrial customers who use fewer than 3,000 therms of natural gas per year.
When you cancel Level Pay, we'll reconcile what you paid with what you've actually used. Your next month's bill will show either a balance due or a credit on your account, depending on whether your actual charges exceed what you've already paid on the plan. Once you cancel the Level Pay Plan, the balance on your account is due and payable within 19 days.
How to Calculate Your Variance
Your variance is the difference between your Actual Charges and the amount you were billed on the Level Pay Plan — called Plan Amounts Billed.
Your Beginning Variance is the Ending Variance from your previous month’s bill.
Your Ending Variance is the Beginning Variance plus any difference between Actual Charges and Plan Amount billed for the current period.
If your Actual Charges are greater than your Plan Amount, your the Ending Variance balance will increase. Or, if your Actual Charges are less than the Plan Amount, your Ending Variance balance will decrease.
A variance is normal for all accounts. During the spring and summer months, you are accumulating a credit variance that will help to pay for your winter bills. A debit variance accumulated during the winter will be offset by the credit variance you will accumulate on your summer bills. However, your variance will most likely never be zero.
For example, if you just signed up for the Level Pay Program beginning in December with a Plan Amount of $60, then for the period December through May, we will bill you for your Plan Amount of $60. We will also present your actual charges during each of those months. If the Actual Charges for December are $85, then your accumulated variance after your December bill is $25 ($85 - $60). If your Actual Charges for January are $95, then your accumulated variance after your January bill will be $60. Your Beginning Variance in January was your Ending Variance in December of $25. The difference between your Actual Charges and Plan Amount was $35. Therefore your Ending Variance for January was $60 ($25 $35).
Failure to Pay
Your Level Pay Amount must be paid in full, by the due date of the bill, each month. Otherwise, you may be removed from the Plan. If, for some reason, you're unable to make your monthly payment, please call SoCalGas at 1-877-238-0092. The unpaid amounts will be shown as a previous balance on your future bills.
If you're removed from the plan for failure to pay your Level Pay Plan Amount promptly, you need to settle your outstanding balance before re-enrolling. Once that's done you can call us at 1-877-238-0092 to re-enroll. You'll then begin a new six-month Level Pay Plan cycle with a new monthly Level Pay Plan Amount.