Frequently Asked Questions

How is an electric cooperative different from other utilities?

Heartland Rural Electric Cooperative is owned by the members. Because of that, taking care of those who use our power is our top priority. We don’t answer to investors or distant stockholders.

Neighbors joined together back in the 1930s to start America’s electric cooperatives. Because of that, Heartland REC remains committed to the betterment of local communities. Cooperatives work to support the communities they serve. And co-op employees, managers, and even board members live and work in the communities they serve and are available to listen to the needs of the communities. Heartland members make their voice heard through the annual election of members of the Board of Directors, by attending the annual Meeting of the Members, and by attending the public meetings that are held as decisions are made regarding rates and other important issues at the co-op.

What rates does Heartland offer?

Most homes and farms are on our Peak Savers rate, but the Time of Use and Time of Use EV rates are also available upon request.

We also have discounted rates for members whose homes are heated with a heat pump. Heartland has several rates in place for its small and large commercial members, based on their load requirements. All of our members, regardless of the rate they pay, also have a Power Cost Adjustment added to their monthly bill. The PCA varies monthly as it tracks the changes in the cost of wholesale power purchased by Heartland.

What are my options for paying my bill?
  • Automatic Payments – Heartland allows you to set up automatic payments on your due date, which is typically the last business day of the month. You can set up automatic payments through SmartHub. Automatic payments can be made using your bank account or credit/ debit card. Contact us at (800) 835-9586 if you have questions.
  • SmartHub – Our free SmartHub service, available online and on your smartphone, allows you to make payments using your debit/credit card or bank account whenever and wherever you want. Visit our SmartHub Member Portal Guide page to learn more.
  • Automated Phone System – Heartland follows the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard, which means our Member Service Representatives do not handle credit card payments over the phone. However, you can make credit card payments 24/7 using our automated system by calling (888) 999-5517.
  • Drop Off or Mail In – Payments can be dropped off at our Girard and Mound City offices, as well as at Community National Bank and Trust in Iola. Checks can also be mailed to the address listed on your bill. Please note that payments must arrive at our office on or before the due date in order to avoid late fees—even if the post office was responsible for delayed delivery. For this reason we strongly encourage other forms of payment.

Heartland members looking for an alternative to the monthly electric bill can select our Prepaid billing option, which is a pay-as-you-go method of paying for the power you use. Members who sign up for this program pay no upfront deposit, and have no late fees or connection fees if power is disconnected.

What happens if I don’t pay my bill?

Bills are considered past due if payment is not received by close of business on the due date shown on your bill. Past due bills will incur a 5% penalty. Service will be subject to disconnection 10 days after the account becomes past due. If you are struggling to pay your bill, please call us at (800) 835-9586. We can work with you to make payment arrangements or refer you to organizations that provide assistance.

What is all that stuff under “Detail of Charges” on my monthly bill?
  • For those on our Peak Savers rate (which is the vast majority of our members), the Energy Charge is approximately 10.2 cents per kilowatt hour. (Those on the Time of Use or Time of Use EV rates will have different energy charges at different times of the day.)
  • The Service Availability Charge is $39 per month and covers fixed costs such as poles, wires, and transformers, as well as our staff members.
  • The Power Cost Adjustment reflects month-to-month changes in the cost of wholesale electricity.
  • The Property Tax Adjustment helps us fairly allocate the cost of property taxes.
  • Through Operation Round Up, consumer-members’ bills are rounded up to the nearest whole dollar and the difference is pooled into a fund for distribution to non-profit organizations that promote the health and well being of eastern Kansans. Heartland consumer-members are opted in by default, but you can contact us at (800) 835-9586 to opt-out.
  • The Peak Charge (again, only applied to those on our Peak Savers rate) is $2 per kilowatt used during your one hour of highest usage during the month on declared Peak Days. Lower your usage from 3 to 8 p.m. on Peak Days and you can save money on your bill. This charge only occurs in June, July, August and September.
  • County Taxes are also collected by Heartland and passed on to the county in which you reside.
Detail of Charges Cost
Energy Charge $134.81
Service Availability Charge $39
Power Cost Adjustment at $0.003865 $5.13
Property Tax Adjustment $-0.32
Operation Round Up $0.90
Peak Charge $12.48
Total This Service $192
What other charges might I incur?

If you have a security or yard light, a charge for that may appear on your bill, depending on whether you own it or whether it is owned by Heartland.

You may also be charged a monthly fee for a security light or generator transfer switch if you have asked Heartland to install that additional equipment.

Certain situations will lead to service fees being charged, especially in the case of late payments or if power is disconnected due to nonpayment. Heartland’s Temporary Service Minimum Fee is $50. The Meter Test Fee is $35.

Heartland’s Returned Check Charge is $35. The Collection Charge is $50. Heartland’s Cutoff Charge is $50. The After Hours Remote Reconnect Fee is $40, and the After Hours Field Reconnect Fee is $90.

Heartland will charge members for materials furnished and for work done on members’ premises beyond the equipment owned and installed by the cooperative; for trouble calls not occasioned by negligence on the part of the cooperative, and any other work or service requested and authorized by the customer. The cooperative will not charge for replacement or repair of equipment furnished and owned by the cooperative, except when repairs or replacement are caused by negligence or misuse by the customer or the customer’s agents.

What is a capital credit?

As a member of Heartland Rural Electric, you will be allocated capital credits each year that revenues exceed expenses. Your capital credit amount will be based on your electricity purchases in relation to the total electricity purchased by all members during that fiscal year.

For more information on Capital Credits visit our Capital Credits page.

What should I do when I have a power outage at my house?

Check your breakers and fuses to make sure the problem is not within your electrical system.

Report the outage using SmartHub or by calling (800) 835-9586 anytime day or night. Choosing our automated system is the quickest way to report an outage or check the status of an existing outage, particularly during widespread outages.

The SmartHub app can provide automatic notifications on the status of an outage. For larger outages, we typically provide updates on our Facebook page.

Can I install solar panels or a wind turbine?

Heartland is eager to work with our members who want to install renewable energy systems at their home, farm or business. Renewable energy is good for our environment, and can be an affordable way to generate power. For more information, visit our Renewables page.