Xcel Energy says customers in Colorado can expect lower natural gas heating bills heading into winter this year compared to last year. The utility company said that with normal weather in October through December, the average residential customer's natural gas bills are expected to be about 35% lower than the last three months of 2022.
According to Xcel Energy, comparing this October through December to last year:
- The average residential customer's natural gas bill for the fourth quarter is expected to be about $85.62 per month, compared to $130.90 for the same three months last year, which is a decrease of about 35%.
- The average small business customer's natural gas bill for the fourth quarter is expected to be about $356.50 per month compared to $564.57 for the same three months last year, which is a decrease of about 37%.
Xcel said the reason is related to the lower cost of wholesale natural gas compared to a year ago, "The proposed fourth quarter Gas Cost Adjustment of $4.71 per dekatherm is more than 50% lower than the $10.09 per dekatherm that was in effect on Oct. 1, 2022. Xcel Energy uses every option available to get the best prices for its customers by buying and storing energy when it is less expensive."
Additional Information from Xcel Energy:
Even though natural gas bills are expected to be lower this winter, Xcel Energy always encourages customers to take steps to save energy and money, and to reach out if they need help with their energy bills. Customers can take advantage of the range of energy efficiency programs and saving tips the company offers to help manage their energy use and keep their bills as low as possible. Customers can find energy saving tips at xcelenergy.com/tips or learn more about energy efficiency programs and options at xcelenergy.com/programs_and_rebates.
Customers are also encouraged to contact Xcel Energy if they're having trouble paying their bill. The company can provide customers with options such as payment plans, energy assistance programs or an Averaged Monthly Payment. Customers can learn more about Xcel Energy's energy assistance programs at xcelenergy.com/EnergyAssistance or call 1-800-895-4999.
While natural gas commodity costs are down 50% compared to a year ago, the price of natural gas has increased heading into the fourth quarter, compared to the third quarter. Customers will see higher natural gas bills heading into winter than they did over the summer, with cooler weather and more use of natural gas for heating. The average residential customer's natural gas bill will be about 15% higher in the fourth quarter than the third quarter and the average small business customer's bill will be about 16.7% higher than the third quarter. This is still significantly lower than last year.
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