Wednesday, January 26, 2011


Our heating bill isn't on the "budget billing" option whereby you are allowed to pay the "same" amount all year round, calculated from last year's billing.

The reason we didn't opt for it is because I want to know just how we are doing with our gas usage even though it means paying more during the winter months. For some reason, I think I would be less aware of my thermostat otherwise.

Every quarter, some companies calculates actual usage and will adjust payment amounts if it is looking like things are getting out of hand. Another company will wait until the winter season is over and charge a one time "catch up" payment which could be an unwelcome surprise.

The quick survey of my colleagues' offices landed my office utility increases in the middle of the bunch. One person's bills have nearly doubled for heating and 50% increase in hydro. The other I asked had numbers close to mine but couldn't comment with heat due to budget billing.

In other news, I am starting to wonder if I made an error booking a flight with LAN. I've had 3 changes so far with the first one pretty extreme ie. as of April, LAN has decided they will not fly out of Canada anymore...

This particular trip won't be coming around for months. I just hope there will not be anymore 40 min phone calls...


  1. I do the same thing. The whole "balanced billing" option would leave me confused as to our actual usage. I like to know how our usage this month compares to the same month one year ago.

  2. I'm not enrolled in the budget billing option for natural gas usage either, though last month's bill was large. I've been even more frugal with the thermostat though. I like to know what our usage is too and I like the tiny bill in the milder months.

  3. I'm seriously considering cancelling the "equal billing" on our gas bill. The company always calculates that we will need more than we do (to their advantage) so they get my money sooner than I would normally give it to them. I usually end up with 1-2 months in the spring where I don't pay at all, because they have overestimated so much. DH and I have lived in the same house for 4.5 years-you'd think they could figure it out, but obviously, they are erring in their favour. Clearly, from this rant, this irks me.

  4. @ The Executioner, Jan & psychsarah;

    I find comfort in knowing what is going on, in real time even if it means a tighter budget over the winter months.

    Probably has to do with me not liking to be surprised. And it is so true -- the smaller bills later is like getting a small windfall!

    I never considered the gas company over estimating in their favour...