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What Does Your Electricity Cost?


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Greetings,

I just did a quick Google search for electricity rates. Found data for 2003 (close enough, right?). http://www.eia.doe.gov/neic/brochure/electricity/electricity.html

Here's the easy reader graphic (attached):

U.S. Electric Industry Residential Average Retail Price of Electricity by State, 2003 (Cents per kWh)

Here in California we pay a high rate, and to add insult to injury, we have a tier scheme where the price for eachkW-Hr increases if you use more than the baseline allowed (based on your home size as defined in the 1970s - the first USA energy crisis).

Here are my 2005 rates:

Total Energy Rates ($ per kWh)

Baseline Usage $0.11430

101% - 130% of Baseline$0.12989

131% - 200% of Baseline$0.17806

201% - 300% of Baseline $0.21937

Over 300% of Baseline$0.21937

Baseline allowance is 247kW-hr.

What does that mean in Christmas lights?

Assume four hours per day, from Thanksgiving to January 1st (inclusive) or 40 nights, for a total of 160 hours. So my baseline would be limited to just 247/160 = 1.54kW per hour.

Let's see... C9 = 7W so I could run 1540/7 = 220 of those, or 308 C7 1/2 5watt bulbs. Or about 1,540 mini bulbs at one watt each, say, forty-four strings of 35 each. And that's not including the TV, my computer, or anything else inside the home...

I'd like to hear from others across the country that may have a better (or worse) deal than me.

Comments Welcome!

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Man, looks like I am lucky to live where I live. We have great basketball teams(yes I even include UL in this statement) and cheap electricity. I had about 25,000 lights, 25 inflatables, as well as several other things and only 24 channels of lor last year and my bill only went up 50 dollars. Not bad at all. Feel sorry for you all that live in California and Hi if there are any:(

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Steven Singleton Jr. wrote:

We have great basketball teams(yes I even include UL in this statement) and cheap electricity.

OK, I'll let you by on that, even though I sense that come a week from now, you'll be editing this post and taking that back.

I haven't really paid much attention to our cost, mostly because my parents still pay it. I know it goes up, but I'm not sure how much...I'll have to let you know when the bill comes in this year.

Pretty much all I really do (so far) is make my parents shake their heads in wonder as I tell them my plans.:happytree:

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Isyour price including delivery charge and taxes?

This is how mine here inMD isbroken down:

.040 electric supply: .026 distribution charge: state tax, franchise tax, local tax add up to .0025

total of .0685

Now my last bill with the Halloween Lights on it was cheaper than the month before due to no A/C running.

However the real kicker of this is that on the last bill it says This Bill reflects the changeto non-summer rates but if you look at the charges they are exactly the same.

If it makes it easier for you to compare 560 kwh came to $46.76.

You also have to remember though that here I will get hit with a high gas bill as gas has doubled. I do have a contract with the local company and I have a lock in for $1.39 a therm but last year that lock in was 75 cents a therm.Right now with no lock in it is $1.60 a therm.Sohouse is a little bit on the cold side right now trying to save on the heating side of the bill.I am figuring an extra $200 or more for heat a month this winter. Was so happy we had a warmer than usual November.

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Mary Jayne wrote:

Isyour price including delivery charge and taxes?

This is how mine here inMD isbroken down:

.040 electric supply: .026 distribution charge: state tax, franchise tax, local tax add up to .0025

total of .0685

.....

If it makes it easier for you to compare 560 kwh came to $46.76.

Mary Jayne,

Actually, we have many additional charges on top of the actual energy usage charge in Kilowatt-hour units. Go here to see a breakdown of that portion of the Pacific Gas and Electric (our local utility) bill: http://www.pge.com/res/understanding_bill/standard/page4.html

For comparison the example bill is for 600 kW-hr consumption and cost $94.62. So we're approximately twice what you pay. Ouch!

Comments Welcome!

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Ok but compare the fact that we pay for gas heat here, which I imagine you don't need much of in CA. Our gas and electric bill comes together. So in the summer time my Gas and Electric Bill is on average around $120-$150 when A/C is running.Also I have a very small house...1 1/2 story brick bungelow. Now in the winter time last year my highest bill was $300 in either Jan or Feb. Average around $225...this winter Iam expecting bills of $500 or more in the colder months.

So now how does that $96.00 sound?

Though I will admit that my ChristmasLights will not have the impact your lights do but while you are sitting in warm and sunny CA...I am sitting in a house where the temps are beingkept at 64%....sure itsounds nice on a hot day but cold 64% is not as nice as a warm 64%. 68% is much better.

I was debating about whether or not to even do lights this year...trying to keep the bill down but then my neighbor and I got talking about how rough a year it has been for lots of people...my mother and father in FL had to evacuate 3 or 4times. So many have lost their houses or have had flooding problems and we are very lucky...so we thought maybe some lights to spread some ChristmasCheer....then I started reading on here and nextthing I know after the HalloweenLights came down I was already putting some lights in the little bushes.

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Mary Jayne wrote:

Ok but compare the fact that we pay for gas heat here, which I imagine you don't need much of in CA. Our gas and electric bill comes together.

So now how does that $96.00 sound?

Mary Jayne,

Not sure if you realised I'm only talking about electricity energy - we also have gas for water heating and space heating. We need to heat in the winter inspite of the myth that California is always sunny :*)

Our monthly bill has both electricity and gas charges. In fact if you follow the link I posted earlier it also has a tutorial on the gas portion as well. Either way we have steep increases in gas costs, the current market price for gas is $1.47/per Therm, up from $1.18/per Therm last year.

Our personal consumption (for electricity only) is around 1,800 kW-Hr in December, due to Christmas lighting, but an average closer to 1,300 kW-Hr monthly in the winter (It's A/C and the swimming pool pumps that really kill us in the summer). So we're using about 500 kW-Hr for Christmas each year and that costs around an extrahundred buckson top of our non-Christmas electrical consumption.

The only other point of reference I have is that Carson Williams (Wizards Of Winter display featured on yesterday's NBC Today Show) was quoted as spending about $150 more for electricity over Christmas.

Comments Welcome!

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Im in Texas and we pay a fuel surcharge....my display with no central uses about 1000 kilowatts @ 11.9 c per K. With the fuel surcharge it comes out to about $150 for the DEC bill. (1000 K's @ $125)

Gas is MUCH CHEAPER down here as we are one of the biggest states that prouduce natural gas.:D

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I understand you were wondering about how much electric is used by people for their Christmas Display and comparing costs. I don't have last years bill to see what I spent compared to the month or so before. This year I switched to mainly energy saving minis.

So even if we did have the same set up and I paid $75with you paying double that wouldof course be $150 andyes that is an ouch cause I canuse my extra $75 for after Christmas sales on lights.So what should I buy? Maybe an inflatable. Oh or maybe I should make some of those minitrees....I could havea nice littlegroup for $75. :tree::tree::tree::tree::tree:

Summer I run an average of 800 KWH in the months with A/C...no pool. Winter around 500.Never really compared the Dec bill to the others per KWH...maybe I really don't want to know because if I knew the actual cost...then I might not want to put them out anymore.

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Mary Jayne wrote:

.....

So even if we did have the same set up and I paid $75with you paying double that wouldof course be $150 andyes that is an ouch cause I canuse my extra $75 for after Christmas sales on lights.So what should I buy? Maybe an inflatable. Oh or maybe I should make some of those minitrees....I could havea nice littlegroup for $75. :tree::tree::tree::tree::tree:

Summer I run an average of 800 KWH in the months with A/C...no pool. Winter around 500.Never really compared the Dec bill to the others per KWH...maybe I really don't want to know because if I knew the actual cost...then I might not want to put them out anymore.

Mary jayne,

Go for the inflatable! There's a nice one with a giant plastic ball like a snow globe!

Check with your utility company, mine has on-line tools to show each customer their personalizedyear's worth of energy consumption (in kW-Hr or $ for electric and also in Therms or $ for gas).

It really hits home when you see one's own spending pattern at a glance!

Enjoy the holidays - it's only once per year.

Comments Welcome!

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Mary Jayne wrote:

The penguins in your picture...I have one of their brothers. Was thinking about getting another with a blue hat...but kind of like the look of the three together.

Mary Jayne,

Always a favourite around here! We've just found a fourth one and now I'm giving some though about how to group them. That PIX was taken last year when they were sitting on a low wall at the front of our home. In previous years they've been on the roof with Snoopy, Santa, Mrs. Santa, and several snowpersons. I like the grouping, too! I have eight nutcracker soldiers from various garage sales, and they also work well in a group, and there's a couple of larger soldiers around here too..

I though we had at least one with blue and the rest with red...

In general we've found blow mould to be less popular and few appear for sale locally. They've given way to inflatables which are easier to store between seasons.

Here's a few more PIX from 2004:

Comments Welcome!

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OK, I live in Southern California, Last years December Electric Bill was $687.00, 3000 SqFt Home w/ 3 fire places (We use them a lot), My Gasoline bill runs an average of $120.00 WEEK for my truck, and $80.00 Week for my wife's van, I can hardly wait to see the natural gas bill, the average home cost more than $250,000.00, I won't even go into STATE sales and property taxes, I'm just glad I don't live in Hawaii.

Good climate cost a lot, and it's not always hot and sunny here (just most of the time), it rains sometimes also.

When the kids are grown, I'm outa here (gota find someplace warm)

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Well more than$250,000.00 is about average for a house here...you can get some cheaper handy manspecials but all the houses we looked at recently that are new go for at least double that and we sure don't have your California Dreaming Weather here.We too have our million dollar houses...Not as many as Hollywood does. I always say if I am going to pay that much for a house...I will go somewhere where the weather is better. Price of housing though is why we are staying where we are.

High property taxes...Oh MD loves its taxes, state isn't bad but the city is. Water bill...my son lives over the county line...his water bill for 3 months is $7, mine is $89, same water, same pipeline, almostsame amount, most of mine is taxes.

Gasoline prices were higher here in MD than anyother state for a while and that had a few senators asking questions. Good thing I drive a small car, but haven't been going anywhere much lately.

Gas heat...ouch...house is beingkept at64% thisyear...sometimes a little on the chilly side...extra sweaters and quilts...sometimes needed.

But the electric...wow...I have a small house...but you can keep your bill. Electricbill recently came in. Keep in mind no A/C this time of year but the Christmas Lights have been on every nightsince Thanksgiving for about 5-6 hours. Soabout 3 weeks worth.

Now the bill says that we have gone into winter rates verses summer rates...which is funny because the KWH priceis the same on my last bill as this one...however cost of electric for this past month...$46...so those energy saving minis do do the trick. Then again I did cut way back on lights this year...but still thought it would be more than that.

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I know no one is going to like this answer but,

If you live in an area (like I do) thathasthe power supplied by a Rural Electrical Co-op (REC) you can approach the board (your neighbors) and ask for a variance since you have a large, outdoor Christmas display.

In the past I have offered to pay somethingduring the month ofDecember but it's always been declined.

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Just got my bill today...0.07376 per kilowatt hour. Just in case you are wondering, thats $70.59 for 957 kilowatt hours. Year ago, same time bill, $71.85 (I don't know what I did, but I like it!) Hope it don't make you homesick Jen!! lol

Now lets not get started on natural gas!!:shock:

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Wow Rick.. Average houe down here closer to San Diego runs over $400,000! My house, which isn't that darned large (2200SF- 4 bedroom) is currently valued at $435,000... With any luck, the prices will remain steady just long enough for me to sell out, move somewhere else and buy a place outright....

And I feel your pain on the gasoline prices... I have about the same here for my truck.. ugh. Tired of the expense of living here...

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