Winter is just around the corner. And with tough economic times, winter heating
bills could be more of a challenge than ever. Minnesota Energy Resources wants to help you understand
what to expect this winter. We also have ideas about what you can do to better manage your heating
If your question is not answered here, or if you'd like more information,
please email contact us.
- Will my heating bills be higher or lower this winter?
- Based on what we know today, we expect the price of natural gas to be lower this winter
than last winter. And that's good news, because the price of natural gas is a large part of your
monthly heating bill. We can't predict exactly what gas prices or gas bills will be, because
several factors will continue to influence them. For example, your bill will be impacted by
winter temperatures and how much gas you actually use. But we estimate that compared to last
winter, if temperatures are normal, bills will be about 20% lower. Again, this estimate is based
on natural gas prices only. Your bill may vary based on your natural gas use.
Back to Top
- If natural gas prices are lower this year, do I even need to worry
about winter heating bills?
We may be seeing lower natural gas prices than last year. But we all need to
prepare now by doing what we can to use natural gas more efficiently and manage
upcoming heating bills. Minnesota Energy Resources is buying gas at the best
possible price for customers. You can prepare by using energy-saving tools and ideas
to use less energy and manage your energy bill.
Another way to manage your energy bill is with Budget Billing.
With Budget Billing, you'll pay an average bill monthly, instead of higher
bills in the winter.
Finally, customers with a limited or fixed income can apply for help. If you've
recently had a change in your job or income, you may find you're eligible for
energy assistance – even if you weren't
in the past. Find out if you qualify for energy assistance or weatherization
programs and apply early, because funding is limited.
Back to Top
- Is it safe to try heating my home in other ways?
- Be careful – the most important thing is to be safe in your home. Follow
instructions for safe, approved heating methods. Our safety tips
Back to Top
- What determines the price of natural gas?
Natural gas prices rise and fall for the same reason the prices of other goods
rise and fall. It's called "supply and demand." The amount of natural gas our
country produces and uses is closely linked to the price of the gas. If the
supply or demand for natural gas changes, a change in the price of the gas
follows. Sometimes, even news about possible changes in the supply of natural
gas can cause the price to change.
Right now, the price is lower because across the U.S. the supply of natural
gas in storage is high and production is stable. Conservation efforts by
consumers have grown, and an overall decline in the economy has some businesses
using less natural gas — so the demand for natural gas is down. And finally, a
calm hurricane season hasn't interrupted drilling for natural gas in the
Gulf of Mexico.
Minnesota Energy Resources purchases natural gas on your behalf, and we don't mark
up the price. In other words, the price we pay for the gas is the same price
Natural gas has always been a sensible value. And now that value's even greater.
Back to Top