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USA Real Estate Blog

The Electric Bill Costs WATT?!? – Sylvia Powell – Medium

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One thing Americans can count on amongst stagnant wages, a crumbling infrastructure, and less government assistant to help the poor; are high utility bills — specifically their electric bills.

Have you ever stopped to wonder how your monthly electric bill compares to the rest of the nation? The bill will usually tell you how your usage compares to that of your neighbor or others in the neighborhood, but what about the rest of the country? Where is that comparison? Do you use more or less than the rest of the country? And if you use less, are you still paying more thanks to what your electric provider is charging you?

I came across a graphic recently that answers these burning (see what I did there?) questions and more. It takes a closer look at the costs of electricity across the United States, more specifically it breaks down the average price per kilowatt of electricity and the average annual bill (divided by 12 months)by each state. It seems like common sense that the states that have the lowest price per kilowatt would have the lowest monthly bill, right? You’d be surprised to find that this usually isn’t the case. **We do have to remember that this graphic doesn’t take outside factors into effect, such as if the home is heated through natural gas or electric which would make the electric bill skyrocket.**

Take Louisiana as an example for where the lowest price doesn’t always mean the lowest monthly bill. As a state, they have the lowest average price of electricity in the entire country at just 9.74 cents per kilowatt, BUT their average monthly bill is $115.60, just over the national average of $111.67. On the flip side, New York’s average price of electricity is almost double Louisiana’s at 18.03 cents per kilowatt but their average annual bill is only $103.22, falling below the national average. Which state would you assume has the highest monthly bill, or the highest price of electricity? If you guesses Hawaii for both you are correct! Hawaiis see an average monthly bill of $149 and their price for electricity is almost three times the national average at 29.50 cents per kilowatt.

I used New York as an example earlier of a state where the price of electricity is high yetthe monthly bill is not, but interestingly enough the state of New York dominates in the ‘Top 10 Least Expensive Electricity Providers and the Counties They Serve’ section of this graphic. As you can see below, seven out of the ten least expensive providers serve counties in New York, so where does that high price of electricity come from? The answer, whenever anyone asks about high costs in the state of New York, is New York City. You’ll see most of the counties listed are near the Canadian border and so many draw cheaper electricity from our neighbors to the north, while providers in NYC are charging an arm and a leg and bringing our state average way up!

To see which electricity providers landed in the top 10 MOST expensive, check out the infographic!

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