As we’re sure many of you know, recently you can’t avoid the Duke Energy Progress Referral Program announcements. Many of our customers are wondering why O’Brien is not a part of this program. It’s because the program is misleading. Duke Progress Energy is advertising a free service, that’s not exactly free. This article will go into detail about the Duke Energy Progress Referral Program, and what they are not telling you.
If you’ve recently been on the Duke Energy Progress site, you’ll see their “Smart $aver” promotion. This description is directly from their site: https://www.duke-energy.com/home/products/smart-saver/referral-program
When you need to find a reputable pro, the last thing you want is to waste time and money looking for the right one. That’s why we’ve created our FREE referral network. Whether you’re looking to improve your HVAC system, insulation, or plumbing and electrical needs, we take the stress out of finding a great pro.
First we’d just like to point out that at O’Brien Service Company we pride ourselves on our customer service. We don’t think a customer contacting us directly is a waste of time, nor money. If you need a new HVAC system we offer complimentary in home evaluations; no waste of money there. Visit our website and read our 600+ customer reviews, that’ll help take the stress out of finding a great Pro. If you’ve heard the recent Duke Energy Progress Pandora ad implying that HVAC companies are unable to answer their phones, go ahead and give us a call. See if we are competent enough to answer.
As far as the word, “FREE”, most people have learned by now that nothing is really free. With the exception of our free in home evaluation of course. The Duke Energy Progress Referral Program states they will give you a list of pros for “free”. However, did you know those pros have to pay for the referral if you use them? That’s right. If you contact Duke Energy Progress for a referral and decide to replace your HVAC system with their pro, the pro will receive a nice big bill! And that cost will be absorbed somewhere.
On the same page on their site: https://www.duke-energy.com/home/products/smart-saver/referral-program it states:
Up to $1,675 in rebates
Our Smart $aver rebates offer a variety of rebates to help you save money and improve the comfort and quality of your home.
This is a bit misleading, since a contractor does not have to be in the Duke Energy Progress Referral Program in order to offer rebates. Not only can O’Brien offer rebates on a new installation, we fill out all the paperwork in our office and submit it for you! The inflated additional rebates promoted by the referral program from Duke Progress Energy actually comes out of the contractor’s fees.
Why Isn’t O’Brien in the Program?
So to answer the question why O’Brien Service Company isn’t a part of the Duke Energy Progress Referral Program, the program is deceptive. Saying the program is free, then charging the referred contractor excessive fees usually ends up costing the consumer.
Utility companies, due to the single source provider they represent, have legal responsibilities preventing their interference to freedoms of smaller businesses. Charging smaller businesses significant fees for referrals, but their website fails to acknowledge this. They reference on their website the qualifications required, yet completely omit the fee portion that will prevent the contractor from participating.
We just wanted everyone to know the truth regarding the Duke Energy Progress Referral Program. We don’t want our loyal customers to be charged with additional fees for signing up for this program. So when in need of HVAC services, contact the contractor directly. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us. Or better yet, maybe call Duke Energy Progress and get their opinion on the matter.