Money Saving Monday #5

Our electricity bill comes every two months. Our consumption varies but our cost has gone up beyond our consumption. Our total bill for electricity and water jumped $80 to over $400 on our last bill. (Our home is heated by natural gas so the colder winter months are not responsible for this jump.) And it’s only going to get worse. A government pamphlet that came in the mail today warns that electricity costs will increase 7.9% every year for the next five years. And this doesn’t include the delivery charge ($79 this month), regulatory charge ($15 this month), debt retirement charge ($14.50 this month) and HST ($36 this month).

When the government introduced the HST, it also introduced a 10% reduction to electricity bills. Sounds great, right? I’m not sure what this rebate is 10% of because on our most recent bill, it was $5.25. We’ll try not to spend it all in one place.

We had been talking about switching our water heater over to natural gas and this last bill was enough for us to go ahead and start getting estimates. We think the water heater may be a big part of the problem. We have no idea what else to do. Time-Of-Use Pricing has been planned for our area but has been delayed. The latest news is that mid-2011 we’ll be able to take advantage of off-peak prices. Until then, we’re doing our best to lower our consumption.

I’m home during the day and Adam and I listened to the radio and except for meals, stay in one room. When Thomas is home in the evenings, we watch about two hours of TV and again, we’re both in the same room. We don’t have lights and TV blaring day and night. I run a fan in Adam’s room for the white noise while he sleeps. I use the oven about once a week and the stove top about once a day. We just don’t see an unusual energy drain.

Any ideas what’s driving up our bill? Are your electricity costs going up and up and up?

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3 Comments

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3 responses to “Money Saving Monday #5

  1. MJ

    Do you have any energy vampires?
    Even when appliances are turned off, may still use electricity.
    Maybe unplugging as many as you can (microwave, dvd player, anything that flashes) at night and when not in use?

  2. It’s SOO hard to keep this cost down! Our heat is now at 20c… (it was at 18 till Jan almost, but it’s COLD now), and like you we just keep lights off when we can, I do laundry on weekends, dishwasher is ran every other night after I go to bed, etc… Its tough! 😦

  3. Electricity and Water bills have been increasing too for us this winter. But I think it’s because we had a few parties during the holiday season and were running the dishwasher often. Hoping the next bill isn’t as high.

    I would suggest unplugging things you’re not using too like MJ suggested. We plug in our microwave and toaster oven only when we need to use them. We’ve been doing the same thing as you too – hanging out in just one room, using the stove top once a day and the oven once a week (during low peak time).

    How often are you washing your cloth diapers? Has it increased in the last few months?

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