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Dear PoPville – What is a reasonable estimate for how much Utilities should cost?

by Prince Of Petworth May 5, 2011 at 2:30 pm 51 Comments


Photo by PoPville flickr user dcjabbour

“Dear PoP,

This rental option post, the ridiculously low utilities cost and the comment about it actually being high got me thinking about our utilities.

Like the post, we too live in a five person group house but the utilities are nearly triple what they pay – we spend an average of $120 per month per person! This is my first “pay the utilities” living situation in DC so I have no clue how to compare it but I always thought a hundred per person was the average.

We have Comcast for TV and internet, an electric hot water heater (which is the main culprit, I fear), gas heating and stoves, central AC (still not on), in house washer/dryer and the usual lights, computers and whatnot. I feel like we are pretty conscientious with our energy use but maybe I am wrong. And it isn’t even summer yet so we don’t have the AC going!

So I guess my question to the readership is (1) does this utility breakdown per person ($120 for 5 people) sound ridiculous?, (2) if so, how much do they pay in utilities? and (3) what has worked for them to cut down on the bills?

Short of the five of us showering together once a day with the lights off I’m stumped. Do we need to get a home energy audit or whatever people keep trying to sell us?”

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