5 Reasons Your Electric Bill is So High
Let’s face it. When you open up your electric bill each month, you simply take note of the total amount due and then schedule that exact amount to be transferred from your checking account. You probably don’t take the time to do a little extra digging into your bill to find out where this number is actually coming from.
What you might not realize is just how much information you might be missing out on. And, there’s even more information that you might want to know that’s actually not included in your electric bill. So, let’s talk about five things you probably don’t know about your electric bill!
1. What’s Racking Up Your Bill
It’d be nice if you could see what was actually racking up your electricity bill so you could do something about it. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. Instead, you’ll just have to look for ways to cut costs and reduce electricity consumption on your own.
Here’s how you can do that.
- Don’t turn on the lights, television, or other electronic devices unless you’re in the room and currently using it.
- Unplug chargers and devices that conduct electricity, even when your phone or other electronic device isn’t hooked up to it.
- Bump up the thermostat a few degrees in the summer and down a few degrees in the winter to reduce strain on the system.
- Look into using energy-saver modes on your electronic devices or invest in low-energy devices instead.
- Keep all windows and doors shut when the air conditioning or heat units are on to keep indoor temperatures consistent.
These are some of the biggest culprits when it comes to explaining your high electricity bill. Just be a little more vigilant about the devices you’re using and how you’re using them and you should see your bill go down within a few months.
2. Recent Local Rates
You can probably figure out what your recent local electric rates are by looking a little deeper into the fine print of your electric bill. This value is usually described as “kilowatt-hour,” or kWh.
What you might not know is that these electric rates are always changing, sometimes from one day to the next. In fact, electric rates have gone up an average of over 1% a year in the last several years.
If you’re really interested in just how much rates are changing throughout the year and how this is impacting your bill, there are some resources out there that keep you in the loop. You can check out the exact rates per kWh within your state and how much these rates have changed in the last year.
3. What Green Energy Really Means
You’ve probably noticed somewhere on your electric bill the opportunity to sign up for some sort of green energy plan. While everything that’s “green” is hyped and wildly popular these days, green energy might not be exactly what you think it is.
In reality, switching over to green energy usually increases your monthly energy bill. And, you really have no idea whether or not you’re truly getting green energy or not. After all, you’re still receiving your electricity from the same company as before.
If you’ve noticed that your rates have recently spiked, it might be a good idea to see if it has anything to do with your enrollment in green energy plans.
4. How Much Tax You’re Paying on Your Bill
As if spending up to a few hundred dollars a month on electricity wasn’t bad enough, there are also a ton of fees and taxes that come with your bill. You just might not notice because you’re focused on the total amount due.
In fact, close to ¼ of your bill might be fees and taxes alone!
Here’s what you might also be paying for.
- Billing fees
- Delivery fees
- Fixed charges
- Demand charges
- Environmental charges
What you might not know is that plenty of states are now bumping up the minimum amount of electricity you must use per month. If you’re not reaching this level, you might actually be paying even more on your monthly bill.
So, being more environmentally friendly and conservative might end up costing you even more in the long run.
5. What Everybody Else is Paying
When you first moved in, you probably just chose the closest energy provider that’s within a reasonable distance to your home. You really didn’t do your research and chose what was convenient instead.
That also means that you might be paying more than your neighbors on your electricity bill without even knowing it. That certainly doesn’t make sense to us either.
One of the best ways to tackle this issue is by scouring online resources. You can figure out which providers offer the lowest rates and compare these values to what you’re currently paying. You can then choose an energy provider that’ll give you a bit more bang for your buck.
No matter what you do, you’ll have an energy bill to pay once a month. And, when it comes to your monthly energy bill, you want to do whatever you can to cut costs and be more environmentally friendly. If that’s your goal, here are a few things you can do to get there.
- Set your thermostat a few degrees higher in the summer and cooler in the winter.
- Unplug chargers and devices when they’re not being used.
- Seal up your windows and doors to keep warm or cool air from escaping.
- Only turn on the lights or television when you’re actually in the room.
- Invest in devices that are low-energy and fuel-efficient.
Most importantly, do your due diligence. Make sure you’re looking into your energy bills and checking out where these extra costs might be coming from.