If you’ve been laboring under the impression that the only way to slash your energy bill is to reduce your usage, you’re in for a treat — energy bills may be as inevitable as death and taxes, but you can indeed, in fact, quite successfully negotiate with your power company.

Your chances are best if you live somewhere supplied by a variety of different companies, but you’ve been a long-term customer of the power company you’re currently with.

You certainly wouldn’t be the first person to be offered a lower rate simply by pointing out that a competitor offers a better deal right as your contract is about to run out. If that’s too indirect to get your message across, you can put it more bluntly.

Say that you’re considering switching to another company to save money, and ask the company what they can do to get you a better rate. More often than not, new doors will open.

In addition, you can take advantage of savings offered to customers who use autopay or who sign longer contracts — not a negotiation exactly, but definitely something that can simultaneously make your life more convenient while also saving you some hard-earned cash.

Is your energy company not budging? When all else fails, remember that you can still shop around and switch to a new provider. They often entice new customers with special offers, which will also ultimately save you.