Wow, I am listening to my local news radio. According to the person on the radio 60, 000 homes have had their power cut off this year due to bills that have not been paid. This number becomes even more staggering because by law, in winter they must turn the power back on, to allow people to have heat in their homes, they can in fact only turn the power off in warm months here.
One out of five people in winter will have a power bill that will be higher cost then their mortgage bill.. Please stop and think about that.. higher then the monthly cost of their house payment..
And the real kicker.. the government keeps pushing.. save power.. save power, turn this off, unplug this and that.. but because we “the people” have been conserved enough that the regulator board says, you saved enough energy in a group way that we did not make enough money so we are approving increases.
38% higher power bills over the past four years in the power rate hikes.. not the use, but the base costs for those paying those bills.
They were talking about the fact that one third of all funds going from our charity groups in our province are going to help people keep the lights and power on. WOW!
There is a national wide saying that is growing bigger and bigger.. Do you eat or do you heat!
A number of folks have been talking about the fact that they are choosing to eat less in order to pay the power bill.. I have to admit that this makes my heart break just a little.. I work in so many way to help the local food shed, I work hard to increase knowledge in regard to ways to save food.
The big “news” from the government is that we are going to save 30 to 50 dollars as they have stopped a old collection fee.. we have had this happen.. we have in fact seen that 30 dollars less per month.. its nothing, a drop in the bucket and offers no relief. I guess if I am trying to be kind, 30 x 12 would maybe add up to the costs of one small condo or apartment bill.
One of the other things talked about on the radio is that the lowest income folks can no longer find small apartments that include everything, that now you pay rent and your power-heating bill.
When its brought to the government, they have one thing they say.. YOU need to use less power.. but when we use less power, we still are paying.. I know.. I have had a summer power bill where I used 28 dollars worth of power and the bill was still 200.. yup.. that’s all the extras they tack onto my bill.. and don’t forget that they add a tax on the bill itself, We have already paid tax on the money earned, and out of that Tax’s money, I pay another tax on it on top.. Sigh!
As most folks know we are very power frugal compared to the average person given that my power bill reflects the costs of a whole farm, not just a house. According to my power company, I am in the top 10 percent of the best savers in my area.
We replaced all the older things in our house, new fridge, new stove and new washer and dryer, we use the shuttle chef to help save cooking costs, we use the crock pots to help keep costs down, why run the bigger oven spaces if I do not need to, plus they are backups as well.
We run a very cool house, we keep the heat off normal until nov and we tend to have it back off in very early spring, normally I close off the whole upstairs of the house in winter and do not heat it at all, We have no AC, we use Ceiling fans and sometimes a small little fan and we use black out curtains for the summer heat and to help keep the warmth in winter but in the winter, we also use passive solar heat.
Thankfully we have been ok with the fact that most of cloths are dried on the line outside, that we make things in bulk and save on costs, that we put on extra layers and lap blankets and so forth as needed, that we have extra thick feather blankets and so forth..
We are also looking at moving more and more to wood heat for the house.. which has its own costs and time to be given to it.. but it will be so worth it in the long run
However we have a major game changer coming.. Operation Beloved BattleAx (aka my mom 🙂
Last year my mom came in the fall for six weeks, she struggled with the cooler house and trust me it was not cold, heaters got turned on months early and it increased our power use for everything, laundry, showers, extra cleaning and the extra room heater, which while very good on power use, it was electic use but it made more sense to add a single room heater to the area’s my mom was then to heat the whole house. It increased the basic power bill by just over 200 for the four weeks.
Yesterday my mom said.. let’s have a ice machine like Big Brother Does. I stopped working on what I was and went HUH!? and then said.. ugh No.. I am not paying to have an ice machine plugged in.. we had a pause.. and I said.. really, Ice cube trays in the freezer.. I had to laugh a little.. but I know my dear mom needs little extra’s but on some things we are going old school.. we pay to run the freezers, and if she wants four six or a dozen trays filled and frozen daily and moved over into a bag so she can have as many as she want.. No problem, that can happen but to add a extra machine that is used maybe once or twice a day max..
She will get as much ice as she would like, and I will keep the power use down 🙂 Win-Win
It did make my head stutter for a few seconds though..LOL
Now after being honest on something that was both funny and a tiny bit huh to me.. my mom does need more heat and more cooling then we do. I think a propane fireplace in the new area will go along way, so will careful placement of windows, ceiling fans but I expect that for at least a few rooms we will need to consider AC for her
And we are going to be heating the upstairs as well as we are going to be building a Master Bedroom, sitting room and half bath on the main floor so that mom does not need to do the stairs, it will be on the side of my main old part of the house using my entry door off my current deck into my dining room-kitchen area.
So not only are we going to be adding in the regular costs of a third person, but we will be adding in heating the upstairs in winter but we are also increasing our basic floor space and we will be adding in AC for at least the new rooms.
I am going to find it a challenge and half to figure out how to use less power in other ways to balance out the bill.. It will be a mix of allowing time to figure out what the basic add in costs are.. I am expecting them but I do believe that I can work with it..
I am up to the challenge of figuring it out.. How is it going in your neck of the woods? Do you have a ever increasing power bill? Have you been lowering the power use but still seeing the bill go up?