October 15, 2020
Over the past couple months someone has been playing with natural gas rates like they’re a red rubber ball. (If that rings a bell “Red Rubber Ball” was a hit by the Cyrkle in 1966.) We have been fortunate that they have been very low, under $2.00 per mcf for several months during the summer. But the futures prices indicate that your February bill could hit around $3.50. But that’s nothing to go clear the toilet paper shelves about! Several years ago the rate was more than $6.00 per mcf.
When it comes to gas we shall repeat for the 38,000th time, NOPEC/NextEra’s variable rate is rarely beaten. People ask, how do I know if I have the NOPEC variable rate? It doesn’t tell you on your bill so you can call NOPEC at 1-855-667-3201. If they tell you that you don’t have the variable rate ask them to switch you to it.
The rate on your August bill was $1.64, the lowest rate since 2016! September bills were $2.00. But now on your October bill it “bounced” up to $2.72! Rates haven’t been this high for more than a year and a half. They’re up about 60% in the last couple months.
But here’s good news, your November NOPEC variable rate drops to $2.25! That’s why they call natural gas the most volatile commodity.
Next, if you don’t see NOPEC on the left side of your gas bill but you do see the letters MVR (Monthly Variable Rate) or MRR (Monthly Retail Rate) you are being robbed blind!!
If you see either of those letters put down your pumpkin spice latte and call Dominion IMMEDIATELY at 1-800-362-7557 and tell them to make you what is called an “SCO” customer! (Standard Choice Offer)
Electricity rates continue to be the lowest in years. If you have NOPEC for electricity that’s fine. The variable rate has gone down to 04.5 cents per kilowatt hour but you might want to consider their very competitive fixed rate right now, especially if you use electricity for both heating and cooling. They have a 12-month fixed rate of 4.86 cents per kilowatt hour. And if you’d like your electricity to be generated by wind, solar, etc., NOPEC’s 12 month renewable energy fixed rate is only 4.96 cents a kilowatt hour. There are lower electricity rates but a switch to them isn’t worth it unless you have a monthly average use of at least 2,000 kilowatt hours.
Finally, when in doubt, always call Ted with questions. 440-526-2606.
The opinions expressed are those of Ted Lux and do not necessarily reflect those of Mayor Hruby or City Council.