March 29, 2019

How to Set Up Utilities in Your Washington, DC Home

How to Set Up Utilities in Your Washington, DC Home

Moving into a new home can be exciting and scary, especially if you are relocating to a new city. One of the most necessary (but less exciting) tasks is setting up all of your utilities.

If you are new to Washington, DC, then Smart Settlements is here to help! Read our list of utility companies in the District and how to go about making your home move-in ready.


Potomac Electric Power Company (PEPCO)

Within thirty days of your move-in date, you can contact PEPCo to schedule your start date. Electricity to your new residence is turned on at 8:00 am on the first day of service.

  • How to start service: Fill out the form online or call (202) 833-7500.
  • Deposit: In most cases, there is no deposit. However, if the customer has an outstanding PEPCo bill, had previously disconnected service, has delinquent payment history, or caused interference with electric service, he or she will pay a deposit of $100 or twice the “normal” monthly bill amount, whichever amount is less. The deposit is returned to the customer when service is properly disconnected or after 12 months of successful payments, whichever happens first.

Clean Choice Energy

Rather than being a stand-alone utility option, Clean Choice Energy works with PEPCo to offer a clean-energy upgrade to DC residents. Not all homes in the District can use Clean Choice’s services, so check for availability at your new address here.

  • How to start service: Sign up online or call (800) 218-0113.
  • Deposit: No separate deposit required. If there is a deposit required from the electric company, then that is incurred through it.

Water and Sewer

DC Water and Sewer Authority

For new homeowners: If the home is changing ownership, service cannot be started through email, over the phone, or via fax. The new owner’s title company must use the DC Water portal to submit the change of ownership. There cannot be a balance on the old account, and a $50 initiation fee is charged to the new owner.

For new renters: If you are renting or leasing your new DC home, then the residence’s owner or authorized management company must give DC Water your information by calling (202) 354-3600, emailing, or faxing (202) 354-3711.

They need to provide DC Water with:

  • The new tenant’s daytime telephone number
  • The address of the residence
  • The DC Water account number for that address

Natural Gas

Washington Gas

Not every District home uses natural gas, but new residents can switch service into their names by contacting Washington Gas using the methods below. If your new home does not currently use gas but you would like to add it, see the availability at this website, then fill out the Service Information Request Form and follow this checklist.

  • How to start service: Fill out this online form or call (844) 927-4427.
  • Deposit: Washington Gas completes a soft credit check to determine if a deposit is required. If the home is already set up for gas, a service initiation fee is applied. For completely new gas service, there is a set-up fee for adding gas to your new home.

Cable and Internet

Verizon FIOS

As with many media companies, you save money if you purchase both cable and internet services from Verizon although many bundled packages require long-term contracts. However, ordering either cable or internet is possible. If your home does not currently have FiOS, check the availability in your area.

  • How to start service: Order packages online or call (877) 225-9137.
  • Deposit: Many current promotions eliminate the deposit and set-up fees. There may be equipment rental fees added to your bill, though.

Comcast Xfinity

Like Verizon, Xfinity offers the best rates for long-term contracts that include both cable and internet. However, you can order either cable or internet as its own service. See if Xfinity is available in your area.

  • How to start service: Order your package(s) online, chat with a representative on their website, visit an Xfinity store, or call (800) 934-6489.
  • Deposit: Yes, there are typically activation and/or installation fees that range from $50 to $90, depending on what work needs to be completed. There may also be equipment rental fees added to your bill.


RCN is a media company that serves the American Northeast, including parts of the District. Many plans have 12-month pricing, although you do not always need to sign a contract to use RCN as a provider. As with the previous two companies, you can save money by bundling cable and internet services. See if RCN provides service in your neighborhood by looking at this list.

  • How to start service: Order online or call (800) 746-4726.
  • Deposit: A list of all applicable fees is found here.

Satellite Television

Satellite is still a viable option for DC residents, and it is less dependent on location than cable. The best packages typically involve 12- or 24-month contracts, and often have promotional elements that expire after a certain amount of time.


  • How to start service: Call (877) 660-0107.
  • Deposit: Deposits may be required for equipment.

Dish Network

  • How to start service: Order online or call (855) 587-0782.
  • Deposit: One-time fees may be required for the equipment you use.

Internet Only

DC Access

If you are cutting the cord on cable and live in either Capitol Hill or Adams Morgan, then DC Access is an internet option for you. See the service map here.

  • How to start service: Order online or call (202) 546-5898.
  • Deposit: There is a one-time installation fee of $99. If you are in a building with DC Access already set up, then the fee is $49.

DISCLAIMER: The information gathered here is deemed reliable as of the date of publication, but each aforementioned company has the right to change its information, rates, and processes. Contact each company for specific answers and the most updated information.

For additional information on this topic contact Evelyn Miller, Partner, at 202-753-7400.

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